Komatsu UK is creating more than 80 new jobs over the next year, after receiving a host of new orders from the domestic and European markets.
Based in Birtley, Tyne and Wear, the new roles have been created in a variety of factory floor departments including production, assembly, paint shop, welding and fabrication, with support roles including purchasing, design and logistics. As part of the intake, 10 new apprentices will also fill a variety of positions in those departments.Paul Blanchard, managing director at Komatsu UK, said: “Like all businesses, Komatsu had to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances caused by the Covid pandemic throughout 2020 and into 2021. And it’s credit to all KUK employees that as we emerge from such a turbulent period in history, KUK remains in a healthy and robust position and ready to launch a significant recruitment drive.
“We take great pride in the way we invest in the development of our employees and everyone we take on in the coming months will be offered not only a varied and exciting career, but also the chance to enhance their knowledge, develop new skills and become part of a focused, committed workforce that has been part of the economic fabric of the North East for the past 34 years and global company for a century.”
Katie O’Brien, HR manager at Komatsu UK, added: “Komatsu UK offers people a fantastic career with genuine pathways to develop skills and access promotion opportunities. I would urge anyone with a background and experience in the engineering sector and automotive or construction plant manufacturing to get in touch – KUK may have the perfect job for them.”
This year, Komatsu celebrates the global company’s 100th anniversary. Komatsu began life named after the city of Komatsu, to make industrial tools for the parent mining company, near Tokyo. It eventually grew large enough to sell to the public and began trading separately in 1921 as Komatsu Ltd, founded by Meitaro Takeuchi. The company produced its first tractor prototype in 1931, producing more machines throughout the 30s, before moving on to bulldozers and construction machinery.
Worldwide, Komatsu Group now consists of Komatsu Ltd. and 262 other companies. It employs around 63,000 people and is the world’s second largest manufacturer of construction and mining equipment.
Komatsu UK has produced excavators since opening the plant in 1987, and establishing a range of Japanese practices and ways of working unheard of in most UK plants. Originally creating 250 high quality manufacturing and engineering roles, Komatsu was at the forefront of the creation of a whole new industry in the North East that centered around automotive and construction equipment manufacturing.