New kiln will safeguard jobs at Colyton factory

Colyton factory’s expansion plans will help safeguard around 100 local jobs

A NEW �210,000 kiln is set to boost production at Colyton’s CermaTec factory – helping to safeguard around 100 local jobs.

The huge investment represents a major turnaround in the German-owned company’s fortunes.

The firm - one of the world’s leading producers of ceramic fuse bodies - faced a gloomy future after the economic slump last year. The world-wide financial crisis dealt them a severe blow, forcing job cuts.

But a recovery in the markets this year, coupled with a programme of aggressive selling, has brought new orders and a staff recruitment drive to cope with them.

Neil Bygrave, Financial Controller and Process Improvement Manager, said: “From January orders increased steadily and by June the factory was at full capacity leading to a management decision to increase capacity through a new kiln which ranks as one of their largest machine investments to date.”

Speaking at Friday’s official opening of the new kiln Managing Director J�rgen Langer thanked all the employees for their support He added: “With our highly motivated and skilled workforce, this investment and new approach to continuous process improvement we are steadily improving our efficiency and better serving our customers.

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“As we improve further we will become even stronger and become better placed to approach the market ever more aggressively thereby securing more orders and helping to ensure a bright future for CeramTec UK in Colyton.”

CeramTec UK Ltd, known as “The German Factory“ or Hoechst, have been celebrating its 45th anniversary this year.

The company currently employs 92 people mostly from Colyton, Seaton, Honiton and Axminster.

One of the world-wide group’s most familiar products is the ceramic body for the domestic plug fuse. The Colyton factory is the world market leader having produced over 80 per cent of all existing UK domestic fuse bodies. They also produce other industrial fuse bodies, ceramic igniter parts and resistor cores and have a laser house for scribing and cutting ceramics mainly for the automotive industry.