It was good news for Bentley and the Crewe workers today as the luxury car maker received confirmation of a conditional allocation of £1.68 million financial support from the Department for Business’ Regional Growth Fund. The funding will help to maintain and further enhance skill levels amongst Bentley’s 3,500 strong Cheshire-based workforce as the company gears up to meet increased demand.
This is vital as the company sees major growth ahead following the introduction of new models such as the next generation Continental GT and the recently launched Mulsanne.
Sales grew by 11% last year and Bentley expects significant double digit growth in 2011 and beyond as customers take delivery of new models. In developing markets such as China sales grew by over 60% last year and in Russia sales are now back to pre-recession levels. Traditional markets are also performing well. In the United States, Bentley’s largest market, sales increased by over 20% in the last quarter of 2010.
Christine Gaskell, Member of the Board for Personnel commented:
“This is fantastic news for Bentley. We have worked hard to make our case to the Department for Business and today’s announcement demonstrates that they understand the importance of supporting one of the most highly skilled automotive workforces in the UK.”
“Bentley exports over 80% of our products and as global economies continue to recover we are starting to see our investment in new models such as the new Continental GT and the Mulsanne begin to pay off. We are now recruiting across the board, not only in areas such as production and quality, but also in sales and marketing to ensure we are able to maximise the opportunities for growth.”
“The funding will enable us to further invest in all of the skills that we need to deliver the new generation of Bentleys and ensure that we have the capacity to meet this increasing demand for our products.”