Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Foreign investment leads to rise in Greater Lincs jobs

In the last year, twenty-six overseas companies have invested in the Greater Lincolnshire LEP area, creating almost 300 new jobs before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A report from the Department for International Trade shows a 30% increase in successful FDI (foreign direct investment) projects in 2019/20 compared to the previous year.

The number of successful investment projects has now increased every year since 2014/15.

Almost half the 299 new jobs (48%) pay salaries above £25,000 per year as companies invest in automation and require higher skilled technicians and engineers to support the equipment.

The 26 businesses that have invested in Greater Lincolnshire have parent companies in 17 different countries, including Singapore, Iceland, Japan and China. Most investment projects came from Denmark and the United States (four each).

Expansions and acquisitions account for almost one-third of the investment activity – the highest proportion recorded over the six-year period from 2014.

Eight businesses were acquired by foreign investors: US-owned Teleflora acquired Interflora in Spalding, Guttridge in Spalding was acquired by the Australian-owned Mitchell Group, and the Japanese-owned Nissui acquired its third Greater Lincolnshire company – Flatfish in Grimsby.

Ørsted, the Danish global leader in offshore wind energy which has a base in Grimsby, has continued to expand, creating 80 new jobs as part of the Race Bank Offshore Wind Farm.

Chinese owned Dynex Semiconductor in Lincoln has invested in the upgrade of its Doddington Road facility, creating 30 additional skilled R&D engineer roles to fulfil automotive sector contracts.

Norwegian food giant Orkla ASA opened a UK central depot for ice cream manufacturer NIC Ice at St Modwen Park in Witham St Hugh’s near Lincoln, creating 11 new jobs. German-owned DHL has also moved onto St Modwen Park.

“Last year was another excellent one in terms of attracting foreign investment into Greater Lincolnshire,” said Pat Doody, Chair of the Greater Lincolnshire LEP.

“The majority of the investments were in the food and drink, agriculture and chemicals sectors. These are key sectors for our area and we’re delighted to see these high-value investments being made.

“We hope to see a further increase in new inward investments in the food and drink and agritech sectors over the coming years as the Food Enterprise Zone in Holbeach takes shape.

“The FEZ is an ideal opportunity for innovative SMEs in the food supply chain to base themselves alongside the University of Lincoln and a ready-made customer base in the heart of Lincolnshire – the UK’s food processing capital.”

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