Wakefield firm praised by Clegg for Indian office expansion

DEPUTY Prime Minister Nick Clegg praised the drive and innovation of a Wakefield firm as he opened its base in India.

The Sheffield Hallam MP held up Group Rhodes’ new purpose-built facility in the country’s hich-tech capital Bangalore, as a shining example of special relationship between UK and Indian companies.

Around 50 to 60 UK jobs are expected to be created with the facility, a 30,000 sq ft joint venture south of Bangalore with Indian firm, MEU Engineering, which makes cutting tools for the aerospace sector.

In recent years, the company has secured a number of lucrative contracts, including a deal to supply forging presses to Asia and around a third of the company’s £20m turnover, is linked to international markets.

It hopes to secure other work in the Indian aerospace sector.

Mr Clegg, who unveiled the base during a three-day trade visit to India, said: “India is at a major crossroads in its economic destiny, and Bangalore is a shining example of how technological expertise can be harnessed to create a powerhouse for growth.

“This city is among the top ten preferred locations for entrepreneurs in the world, and home to more start-ups than any other city in India.

“What I see in Bangalore is that India’s prowess in aerospace and hi-tech is growing fast. This is fertile ground for UK and Indian firms to do business, and that’s been proven by the deals done today by UK companies setting up shop here in India.”

Group Rhodes is one of Europe’s largest manufacturers of special purpose machinery for advanced applications in sectors such as aerospace, metalforming, heavy ceramics, composites, environmental and deep-sea oil and gas.

Group Rhodes managing director, Mark Ridgway, said: “It is a great honour that the Deputy Prime Minister has agreed to inaugurate the Rhodes India facility. The Government has been very supportive of the advanced engineering sector in the UK.