The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Ayrshire secures hundreds of jobs

HUNDREDS of Ayrshire jobs have been secured or created with the help of almost £10 million of Scottish Government support, it was announced today.


Investment projects by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Irvine and Prestwick based Aerospace firms Slingsby and Spirit have been awarded £9.8 million in Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) funding, training support and R&D grants, aimed at safeguarding 486 jobs, creating 45 new posts, and delivering a combined £54 million of investment into the Ayrshire economy.

First Minister Alex Salmond visited the Ayrshire sites of GSK, Slingsby and Spirit today where he met staff whose futures have been secured with the help of the RSA funding.

GSK manufactures pharmaceuticals, Spirit specialises in wing components for aircraft including the Airbus A380, and Slingsby manufactures composite products for aerospace and defence industries.

First Minister Alex Salmond said: “The Scottish Government recognises the real challenges that individuals, families and businesses face in the current economic climate, and that is why we are working hard to strengthen the economy and to increase employment opportunities.

“We are using every tool at our disposal to stimulate Scotland’s economy, including nearly £10 million in various forms of government support to help secure and create 531 jobs in Ayrshire and to attract £54 million of private investment to the area.

“I am delighted that GSK, Slingsby and Spirit have demonstrated their confidence in Scotland’s economy, and the skills and experience of the local workforce, with their plans for significant investment in the Ayrshire area.

“RSA and other grants help to attract investment into our communities, create new opportunities for employment and support much needed jobs across the country - all of which are vital to increase growth and ensure Scotland enjoys a strong economic recovery.”

GSK Irvine site director Alan Catterall said: “We are delighted to welcome Scotland’s First Minister to our factory as part of his Ayrshire visit. The factory is investing £31 million over the next three years to secure a robust future. This investment is supported by the £4.6 million RSA grant from the Scottish Government. This partnership will secure 330 highly skilled jobs in the production of antibiotics in Scotland. A training grant of £275,000 from the Scottish Government will provide for additional skills enhancement for the GSK staff on site.”

Scott McLarty, operations and HR director for Spirit AeroSystems (Europe) Limited said: “Opening our new R&D facility in Scotland is an important part of ensuring that Spirit maintains and grows its critical role in the design, development and manufacture of aircraft wing structures.

“We intend to remain at the leading edge of this technology and the new centre here at Prestwick underlines our commitment to that goal.”

Managing director of Slingsby, Steven Boyd, said: “We took the decision to expand at Prestwick not only to tap into the potential market, but also to benefit from the excellent skills base that exists north of the border. We have not been disappointed. I am delighted with the progress in the business to date, and look forward to a bright future based on our ability to innovate and provide cost-effective solutions for customers in the aerospace, defence, marine, energy and other markets.”

Lena Wilson, chief operating officer of Scottish Enterprise and CEO of Scottish Development International, said: “This investment in the Ayrshire economy is excellent news and the decision by GSK, Slingsby and Spirit to continue to invest here underlines Scotland’s position as a first-class place to do business. Each of these companies are excellent examples of forward thinking, ambitious and innovative businesses who set their sights high and contribute significantly to the Scottish economy.”

GSK Irvine will receive a RSA grant of £4.6 million and £275,000 Training Support that will safeguard 330 jobs and secure £31 million of investment to the site.

Slingsby will receive £249,000 in RSA and £348,312 in training assistance which will secure £1,247,000 investment into the site and help to create 28 jobs.

Support to Spirirt of £4,300,000 for various projects is aimed at securing total investment of over £21 million into the site and will help to safeguard 156 jobs and create 17 jobs, as well as keeping the company at the cutting edge of technology.

In the last quarter (July to September), RSA funding offers have been accepted by 32 businesses, linked with overall planned capital expenditure of more than £70 million and the planned creation and safeguarding almost 2,500 jobs across Scotland.


Spirit Aerosystems


Slingsby Advanced Composites

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