Renishaw, the engineering company which took over the Bosch plant in Miskin a year ago, is expected to announce major plans for the future of the site when it officially opens this morning. The Gloucester-based firm makes precision measuring instruments, and is already manufacturing in South Wales after buying the 200-acre site for £7.7 million last year. The company was tight lipped about the details but said it would be applying for planning permission next year and hoped to fund significant investment on the site alongside the M4.
Renishaw currently employs just 25 people at Miskin with 1,700 over the border in Gloucestershire. It was founded in the 1970s by two ex-Rolls Royce employees. The firm bought the Welsh site when Bosch pulled out, because it needed more manufacturing capacity. It says it now has plans and room to expand. The growth is being driven by demand from the BRIC countries of Brazil, Russia, China and India, with exports making up 94 per cent of its output. The high-tech niche products are used in the aviation, automotive and medical sectors.
Site manager Steve Roberts says the company, which employs 3,000 people in 32 countries around the world, has big plans for Miskin. It's where its future manufacturing expansion will be focused.
"It has been easy to recruit in South Wales, easier than other areas, there is a good skills base here. Currently we are running two shifts, and we will be expanding up to three by the end of the year and recruiting."
Site electrician Andrew Stott was one of hundreds of former Bosch employees laid off a year ago. He was taken on by Renishaw immediately, and says he sees his future at the plant.
At its height Bosch employed 1,800 people making car alternators at Miskin but transferred production to Hungary last year.