Montupet secures £140m contract
French manufacturing giant Montupet has secured a massive deal to produce cylinder heads for car engines at its plant outside Belfast after more than doubling a recent order.
The firm - which produces cylinder heads for General Motors, Ford, as well as Peugeot and Citroen - landed the deal for its Dunmurry plant.
And it's expected to be worth around £140m, over the life of the contract - which is thought to be six years.
The company is investing £14m in new equipment, and will produce around 450,000 car cylinder heads each year for the customer in Eastern Europe.
Montupet would not reveal the name of the firm behind the latest deal.
The factory specialises in the manufacture of aluminium vehicle engine components for car firms across the globe.
But it secured an order for 200,000 heads each year last month. This new deal will add another 250,000 to that initial order.
"We have the capacity to produce roughly 1.5 million heads a year - so this is around 30% of future business," John McMichael, Montupet UK's group manufacturing systems manager, said.
"And the point for us is, we have been able to win this with competition from all over Europe - including Eastern Europe."
Montupet UK's managing director Jim Burke welcomed the firm's latest big deal.
"I am delighted to announce that Montupet has secured this production order," he said.
"Combined with the order received just four weeks ago, it means a total investment in Belfast of over £14m and will secure more than 100 jobs from 2018 onwards.
"This is great news for the future of the plant and for our employees."
The latest deal comes after the company revealed it is investing a further £8.2m in its Dunmurry factory.
French parts maker Montupet has had an operation in Dunmurry for 25 years and boasts a workforce of more than 600.
It delivers its products into engine plants based in the UK, France, Turkey, Romania, South Africa and China.
Alan Malcomson, product and process development manager at Montupet UK, said the new order "emphasises the ability of the Dunmurry plant to compete in the global automotive marketplace, offering both quality and expertise while remaining economically competitive".
"Montupet's commitment to investing in training and expanding skills of its employees, embracing new technology and improving processes, enhances our competitiveness and positions Montupet Dunmurry at the leading edge of casting industry efficiency and excellence.
"This contract will sustain jobs and secure the company's long term future in international markets."
Invest NI's chief executive Alastair Hamilton said securing the order was a "tremendous achievement" for Montupet in Northern Ireland.
"This success is underpinned by the company's commitment to innovation and continuous improvement which is now clearly paying dividends."