Thursday, 29 May 2014
Aston invests £20 million at Gaydon
Work is under way on what is claimed to be “one of the most significant and exciting developments” at Aston Martin.
Aston Martin’s factory and global HQ at Gaydon, Warwickshire for several years, is receiving a £20 million boost as the business prepares to “grow substantially” its manufacturing facilities and workforce.
Preparations are well advanced on an extension to the British luxury sports car maker's state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities, as the business gears up for its next generation of new sports cars.
Alongside the building work, Aston Martin is embarking on a recruitment drive with around 250 new jobs in engineering, manufacturing and commercial functions to be created over the course of the next few months.
The specifics of the ambitious development plan at Gaydon include a new chassis and pilot build facility, new offices, and an extension of the parts and logistics storage area. The new facilities will cover an extra 10,000 square metres and the major development work is due to be completed in 2015.
Aston Martin’s chief financial officer, Hanno Kirner said: "The investment in our Gaydon HQ forms part of our long-term strategy which is focused around being the number one British luxury sports car brand."
Keith Stanton, Aston Martin’s manufacturing operations director, added: "I am very happy to be able to execute another part of our manufacturing strategy by extending our already highly-efficient facility.”
"The improvements at Gaydon are a big step forward, and the development will enable us to streamline and finesse our manufacturing processes which, in turn, will allow us to be leaner and even more competitive," he said.
And, by that presumably, he means more cost-effective, and more profitable for the company which has had a few years in the doldrums, financially – and product-wise. But in the great scheme of things, £20 million is 'small beer' at this stage alongside the likes of JaguarLandRover but it is necessary to stay alongside the commitment from Mercedes AMG. Unlike some other great British marques from the past, like Alvis, Aston Martin Lagonda is one that refuses to die.
Stanton added: "We have the vision of being the best producer in the luxury sports car sector and a new facility, along with the support of our flexible, highly-efficient workforce, will enable us to achieve our goal."
Meanwhile, more than 500 applications have been submitted for the 12 places available in the latest round of Aston Martin's highly-regarded apprenticeship scheme, as the brand continues its mission to recruit and train the cream of the automotive sector's future manufacturing personnel.
Beyond its significant investment in, and commitment to, the development of its apprentices, Aston Martin will welcome 14 new graduates to the business in 2014.
Kirner made the point: "We have confirmed that the coming years will see Aston Martin implementing the biggest investment programme in the 101-year history of the brand, with a plan to inject over £500 million into the company's next generation of high performance sports cars."
Aston Martin design director, Marek Reichman concluded: "The announcement adds important detail to our ambitious plan, and underlines our wholehearted commitment to continue to design and develop the world's most iconic sports cars through investment in numerous areas of design, engineering, manufacturing and technology."