A Firm that has become a vital component of the Nissan supply chain has seen turnover rise 2.1% on the back of mixed fortunes in European car registration markets.
Gestamp Tallent designs and builds chassis and parts for most motor manufacturers, including BMW, Ford, Jaguar, Honda and VW. It operates from based in Sunderland, Newton Aycliffe, Cannock, Llanelli and Fareham.
Latest accounts published by the firm, which employ around 1,500 people at the Newton Aycliffe site and 196 at Sunderland, reflect the rising positivity within the UK motor market, but paint a bleaker picture in the eurozone.
The firm posted sales of £419.3m for the year ended December 2013, a small lift on the previous year’s £410.5m, while pre-tax profits were largely in line with 2012 after removing a one-off disposal made in the previous year, at £20.6m compared to £24.8m.
The overall profit for the year was £16.4m, down from £19.6m, which was affected by heavier investments in research and development of £8.08m compared to last year’s £5.34m spend.
Headcount rose from an average 2,115 to 2,139 over the period and payments to the highest paid director also rose from £311,267 to £339,915.
During the year the company, which has key markets in the UK, Western Europe and Asia, said it also made donations of £4,234 to charities.
The strategic report accompanying the accounts described the firm’s financial performance as “acceptable”.
The directors said: “In respect of the automotive market in 2013 UK car registrations exceeded 2.2 million vehicles, a year-on-year rise of 10.8% and following a 22nd consecutive monthly rise returned to registration levels last seen in the pre-recession year of 2007.
“The economic picture in Europe was less positive with car registrations at 11.8m for 2013 having declined the sixth consecutive year and was 1.7% lower than the previous year. This total level of registrations was the lowest since 1995.
“The company is focussed on demand from its customers both in the UK and abroad, not regional registrations, and a strong domestic market can be significantly cancelled out by reduced demand elsewhere.
“The company will continue to invest in production and strategic assets in the coming years recognising both the need for new manufacturing lines but also the need to replace and complement existing strategic assets.”