Randox announces 242 new posts for Northern Ireland
By Margaret Canning
Medical equipment company Randox will create nearly 250 jobs as it sets its sights on expanding into Brazil, Russia, India and China.
Medical test maker Randox Laboratories in Crumlin, Co Antrim, is upgrading its facilities and boosting its sales, marketing and production capabilities in the £15.8m investment.
Its kits are used to diagnose diseases, metabolic dysfunctions and environmental pollutants, and the 242 new jobs will be in the sale, marketing and production of those kits.
The new employees are to be recruited by December 2014 and will be added to Randox’s existing 620 employees in Crumlin.
Invest NI has offered assistance of £2.4m towards funding the company’s latest growth.
Managing director Dr Peter Fitzgerald said the company would need to increase sales and marketing, particularly in new markets, if it was to meet ambitious revenue targets.
“We have identified sales opportunities in the rapidly expanding economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China and will be targeting these with our extensive portfolio of products.
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“We also have many new revolutionary products planned for release in 2011 that will make patient testing faster, simpler and more accurate.”
Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said Randox, which famously spends millions of pounds every year on research and development, was one of the province’s most respected companies. “It has grown steadily since it was set up in 1982 and, through a firm focus on research and development, has established itself as a world player with an international reputation for excellence.
“This significant investment will enable the company to increase sales of its innovative products in the growing medical diagnostics market, which is a multi-billion pound industry and one in which Randox continues to excel.
“Through the new jobs created, this investment will also benefit the wider local economy in terms of salaries and employment opportunities.”
Almost all Randox products are exported. Earlier this month the company unveiled a new test which it promised would cut diagnosis times for sexually transmitted diseases from two days to four hours.
US Economic Envoy Declan Kelly said Randox’s expansion was “another positive sign for Northern Ireland’s economic outlook”.
Randox employs another 240 people in locations worldwide.
The steady growth of Randox since it was founded by Peter Fitzgerald in 1982 has made it a company worth watching. The Strathclyde graduate began by working on diagnostic tests from a chicken shed in the back of his parents’ Crumlin home, and the Randox site is still located close to the homestead. It remains privately owned with Fitzgerald reported to own 98%, and his mother and father the remainder.