MORE THAN 60 disabled workers will be offered their jobs back at a Coventry car parts manufacturer after the firm was saved from closure.
The plant was at risk when Arlington Industries Group went into administration in May 2020.
But now, as part of the eight-figure sum rescue, the newly named ‘Evtec Automotive’ plant on Torrington Avenue will continue to make car parts for the major companies in the UK automotive sector.
There will also be a strong focus on supporting the growing electric vehicle (EV) sector.
The automotive firm has long employed disabled workers. Originally it was part of Remploy, a scheme formerly sponsored by the Department of Work and Pensions to provide on-going sustainable employment for disabled people.
Evtec chairperson David Roberts is behind the acquisition which was completed this week.
He has a long history with the plant, having acquired it from Remploy back in 2013, as the Government scheme disbanded.
It was then renamed Rempower and became a part of the Arlington Industries Group which suffered financial trouble in May due to Coronavirus hitting car sales and manufacturing supply chains.
David Roberts left Arlington in 2015 due to family reasons, and was approached last year by regional car manufacturers to buy the plant out of bankruptcy, and form the new company Evtec Automotive Ltd.
The Evtec team, under Managing Director Kevin Hubbard, has been working hard on filling the plant’s orderbooks while the deal was under negotiation, and has reached its pre-coronavirus monthly sales of £7million.
It is on target to rescue approximately 200 jobs by end of March 2021, with 35 per cent being given to disabled workers.
From its 80,000sq ft plant, Evtec Automotive will continue to supply parts to the automotive industry, including OEMs, tier one suppliers and the aftermarket. Clients include auto manufacturers Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Ford and Nissan, and also Aston Martin, Lotus, Levc, Mclaren, David Brown Automotive, Little Car Company and Tevva Motors.
Electric vehicles (EV) will be fundamental to the company’s success. As the demand for EVs grows, so does the requirement for various assemblies that cover battery, cooling wiring and hydraulic systems, which are widely used in hybrid and electric vehicles.
Mr Roberts said: “The Coventry plant’s rebirth, in 2021, under the Evtec Automotive brand, represents its next natural evolution as it becomes an essential service to OEMs in the UK and Europe for complex assemblies in electrical and cooling systems.
“Rebuilding on its key ethos of practising disability in the workplace, combined with high ethical and social standards, the business is positioning itself as a key tier one supplier to the rapidly growing EV sector.
“With JLR and Ford as major customers and wonderful supporters, the business has an ambitious growth plan as demand for electric vehicles grows.
“Employing more disadvantaged people combined with a commercial profit and being part of making our planet a greener place for our children, it can’t get any better.”
Mr Roberts sits on a number of company boards and has plans to replicate the model of employing disabled workers across other existing sites and companies.