Belfast Telegraph

Ulster Carpets here for long haul with £30m outlay

Lesley Houston

Ulster Carpets has unveiled a £30m facelift and expansion plan.

The global export business is constructing modern, new manufacturing facilities at its Portadown premises base after first razing its old buildings to the ground.

The upgrade will help safeguard around 250 jobs at the site, with the scheme taking place over a seven-year period, commencing next month.

The investment is part of a long term commitment toward job creation as well as strengthening its position as a world leader in woven Axminster carpets.

The firm celebrates 75 years in business in 2014, in a year which has witnessed a 25% increase in sales and 40 new jobs.

The company carpets the floors of high-calibre customers across the world including top hotels from London and Paris to Dubai.

Invest Northern Ireland has offered £950,000 of assistance towards the project which involves a £6.5million dyehouse and energy centre which aims to significantly improve the energy efficiency of the site.

The firm has said it has consulted widely with the local community to "ensure the plans enhance the local area and make a positive contribution to the environment the company operates within".

Ulster Carpets has a strong commitment to using local suppliers and buying locally which will be reflected throughout this investment programme providing further support to the local economy.

New weaving and finishing technology will soon follow to meet the demands of projected future growth amid a fiercely competitive world market.

Managing director Nick Coburn said: "Three years ago we made a strategic decision to keep our manufacturing base in Portadown and to continue to invest heavily in innovative technology along with providing a high level of excellence in service and quality.

"However, it is the ongoing commitment and endeavour of our people which sets us apart from the competition."

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said in recent times, the firm "has transformed into a major export player".


Jobs safeguarded by facelift which will get under way next month

Belfast Telegraph