A Black Country engineering group has invested £500,000 in a new centre of excellence as part of a relocation.
Deritend will shift much of its operations from its base in Wolverhampton to its site in West Bromwich which has undergone an expansion.
The company, which was founded in 1898, specialises in the repair and replacement of electric motors, pumps, gearboxes, electronic controls and induction equipment.
The relocation has given it additional space to create a dedicated fabrication shop which will help it serve new client wins in the food, water and waste sectors.
It is also planning a fresh recruitment drive of around 25 new roles if it is successful in an upcoming round of tender bids.
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Chief executive Richard Hale acquired the company as part of a management buyout in 2001 and the firm’s clients include Severn Trent, Thames Water, JCB and Cadbury’s Mondelēz International.
He said: “We keep UK industry and a lot of essential utilities going so we tend to be a good barometer for economic recovery, being the first to feel a recession and the first to emerge from it.
“During the pandemic, we had to furlough about 50 staff as projects just dropped off a cliff.
“However, over the last three months we have seen output increase by 30 per cent and we are now operating at around 85 per cent.
“The really exciting news is that we are on the verge of potentially winning some major contracts and these will provide long-term work and possibly 25 new jobs, including workshop fitters, site fitters, welders and fabricators.”
The recent relocation to West Bromwich takes the company’s annual investment to more than £1 million, with new equipment installed and an upskilling programme implemented for the majority of its 120 employees.
Regional director Dave Booth added: “West Bromwich will be our regional centre of excellence for the Midlands, giving us additional space, a purpose-built layout and the opportunity to create our own fabrication shop.
“There is still a lot of uncertainty around but the service we offer means we have to be in a position to take on new contracts quickly and also meet emergency repairs if a manufacturing line goes down or there is a fault at a water treatment plant.”