North East oil and gas engineering firm FES International has been given the go-ahead to expand its premises as part of an ambitious development plan marking its 17th year in business.
FES, which has more than 300 of its diverless bend stiffener connector (DBSC) units in operation across the globe, plans to increase its Ashington site by 12,000 sq feet to advance its manufacturing and testing facility. The business, which has invested £700,000 in research and development, hopes to unveil a new product range by next April.
FES employs 36 people in the North East, and has a further 400 people in its supply chain around the world. The firm expects to fill six additional positions within the coming months.
Over five years, it also hopes to double the £15m turnover it reported in 2012.
The expansion of its premises has been assisted through a grant from The Northumberland Business Growth Programme. Arch, The Northumberland Development Company, in conjunction with Northumberland County Council, was awarded £11.75m from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) to deliver the scheme, which provides financial support to businesses across Northumberland, encouraging the creation of sustainable jobs and the safeguarding of existing jobs.
FES managing director, Rob Anderson, said: “We began 2013 by moving into new 35,000 sq ft multi-million pound premises and we’re ending the year by expanding. It has been a significant year for us. This extension will mark the next chapter for FES and we are grateful to Arch, The Northumberland Development Company, for helping us realise this opportunity. This industry is all about innovation and that’s why we are continually investing in our people and facilities.”
Peter McIntyre, Arch group managing director said the RGF provided a “great boost” to Northumberland’s economy.