Carrickfergus-based Woodburn Engineering is set to nearly double its workforce as part of strategic growth plans supported by the Invest Northern Ireland group.
The family business is creating 10 new jobs and investing in extra machinery (plus marketing) in an attempt to secure new tender opportunities in the UK, in particular in the infrastructure and ports sectors. It specialises in the fabrication of light and heavy steelwork and the associated site installation work.
Commenting on the firm’s expansion, managing director Tony Cowan said: “This investment is a significant development for the business; it will enable us to target and secure new high-value projects outside of Northern Ireland.
“We have seen an upturn in Great Britain’s construction sector, and bolstering our management and production teams is giving us greater in-house technical expertise and resources to deliver more-complex engineering projects.
“Invest NI’s support is helping us to position ourselves to compete for new business. We have already seen the first fruits of our efforts, securing contracts valued at £2 million with Glasgow and Chesterfield City Councils.”
Invest NI has offered Woodburn Engineering £45,000 towards its plans for growth. The 10 new jobs are for seven skilled welders along with a production supervisor, contracts manager and draughtsman.
Commenting on the expansion, Invest NI’s eastern regional manager, Moira Loughran, said: “This is an important and strategic investment for Woodburn Engineering and a positive news story for Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council area.
“The recovery of Great Britain’s construction sector is benefitting this family firm, which is experiencing encouraging growth.”
Meanwhile, Northern Ireland food packaging manufacturer Boran-Mopack has spent £2.4 million and created 10 new jobs in Strabane as part of an export growth drive.
The business, whose processes include extrusion and flexographic printing, is attempting to double exports over the next two years after the investment in machinery and equipment at its premises in Strabane, which was bolstered by a £250,000 fund from Invest NI.