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New Coventry Marconi Jobs Confirmed

Trade and Industry Secretary Stephen Byers and Marconi boss Lord Simpson have confirmed that thousands of new jobs are coming to Coventry.

Marconi’s new communications headquarters will be built on a former airfield in Ansty. The project will create 2,200 new jobs over the next five years, with over 1,000 in the first two years.

A further 700 jobs are likely to be created in the construction industry and Marconi is also to develop stronger links with the University of Warwick.

Workers made redundant by Rover at the Longbridge plant are to be interviewed and offered retraining.

A government grant of £25 million is being given to the communications giant to help finance the move.

Up to 2,000 jobs could be created at the existing Marconi site in New Century park, which will be re-developed for residential, commercial and industrial use.

Announcing the new headquarters, Stephen Byers said:

“Exactly seven weeks ago on 27 March I put the case to George Simpson that the UK in general and the West Midlands in particular would be an ideal location for Marconi’s new communications headquarters.

“This decision represents a vote of confidence in the West Midlands.

“It shows that the skills and manufacturing expertise that exist in the region make it an attractive location for high-tech manufacturing companies like Marconi.

“With the help of £25 million Regional Selective Assistance, Marconi’s state-of-the-art facilities will be constructed at Ansty near Coventry on a former airfield.

“The construction sector is likely to benefit with an extra 700 jobs.

“The Ansty site is some 30 miles from Longbridge and Marconi have agreed to interview staff made redundant at Longbridge to fill the new vacancies.

“Those selected will be retrained for telecommunications work.

“Increasingly, manufacturing will need to link up with information technology if it is to survive in the new global economy.

“Securing this project for the United Kingdom puts us in a strong position and we shall be working to encourage the creation of a high-technology communications based cluster in the West Midlands using the Marconi investment as the catalyst.”

Lord Simpson, chief executive of Marconi, said the expansion was an expression of the firm’s confidence in the West Midlands.

He said:

“Marconi is now one of the world’s fastest growing information and IT companies and the new jobs announced today will be a vital part of that exciting future.

“Our operations are growing world-wide.

"We recently committed to expand our facilities in the USA and we’re looking at a similar expansion in Italy, so we’re particularly pleased that we can now do the same here in the UK.

“The jobs being created today are significant not only in terms of numbers, but even more importantly in the quality of the employment they bring to the West Midlands.

“Marconi operates in some of the most exciting markets of the new economy – communications, IT and the new internet technology.

“These jobs will be high value-added posts – engineers, researchers, technologists and the like.

“They are the jobs of the future. They are jobs in an expanding industry with bright prospects.”

Alex Stephenson, chairman of Advantage West Midlands said thousands more jobs would also be created on Marconi’s current site in New Century Way, Stoke.

He said:

“Our team has worked extremely hard to help create this opportunity, which involves not only a massive investment, but an innovative land swap deal.

“This is a major boost to the West Midlands economy and demonstrates once again that we continue to attract global companies to the region.”

Professor Kumar Bhattacharyya, head of the Warwick Manufacturing Group at the University of Warwick, added:

“I am delighted at the news of Marconi’s expansion plans,

“This is a sign of confidence in the West  Midlands economy in general and in Coventry and Warwickshire in particular.

"What is really important is the type of investment being made in the technology of the future without which the internet and therefore the e-businesses of the future could not develop”.

“We have been working very closely with Marconi since we forged the Knowledge Partnership when they where still known as GEC.

"Since then we have developed a dedicated Masters programme for Marconi (International Technology Management MSc).

“We are confident that the managers we have trained across the company from the US and from continental Europe will lead the company on to even greater success in the future."


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CWN / Business / A-Z / Marconi / 15 May 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM