On Friday 27th January Surface Technology International (STI) was delighted to host a factory tour for the Rt Hon James Arbuthnot, local Conservative MP for North East Hampshire and Chairman of the Defence Select Committee. The MP took time out of his busy schedule to visit the specialist electronics manufacturing company as part of his on-going interest in local businesses. In the past few years, the site has recently seen substantial growth, moving from c.21,000sq metres to c.60,000sq metres and now employs over 450 people in the local area. Simon Best, Group Managing Director, is committed to keeping the business local and the opportunity to develop further on the current site has been an important part of the expansion plans.
Simon and two senior members of his management team, Nick Davey –Group Commercial Director and Chris Lyon – Group Operations Director, hosted James. Nick took the opportunity to showcase the activities of the growing Research & Development team, which is engaging with clients on prototype design and development work for exciting, new electronic products. Chris led the walkabout of the manufacturing facilities and discussed the increased impact of ‘urgent operational requirements’ (UORs) from major customers in the Defence Industry and some recent new contract wins which will underpin further investment in the manufacturing facility and a renewed local recruitment drive, including graduate talent from Southampton University and surrounding colleges. Simon Best commented: “we have been delighted with the talent we have attracted locally, the commitment that staff give to STI and we will continue to rely on the local community for future support”.
In a letter of thanks to STI, James stated: “it is so pleasing to find a local manufacturing business thriving, and employing so many local people – quite the kind of success story we need to motivate other businesses to do the same”.