Manufacturer completes �2m investment project

Manufacturing group Trox UK has completed a �2.1m, four-year, investment programme at its Thetford headquarters.

Trox, which designs and builds air handling and air conditioning systems, said the investment programme had already seen an increase in production capacity at its Caxton Way facility, reduction in lead times for delivering projects to customers and a more flexible use of raw materials.

Trox's operation in the UK employs 200 people, with a turnover of �19.75m last year. Its parent group employs 3,254 people worldwide and recorded a group turnover of �351m (�307m) in 2010.

The third phase of the investment programme has seen �600,000 invested in new computer-aided manufacturing equipment, including an advanced technology panel bending machine.

Providing a hi-tech alternative to the factory's existing press brakes, the new machine creates components for the Trox range of chilled beams in a third of the time, and with greater accuracy and quality.

Earlier phases have involved the installation of two fully-automated punch presses which have increased production capacity at the factory by about 60pc.

Trox UK's chief operating officer, Ian Sams, said: 'Whilst the new equipment is the most visible outcome of the investment programme, it is really just one part of the overall project.

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'A significant figure has also been dedicated to training of our workforce, including skills development. So the greatest investment of all is coming from Trox employees.'

Mr Sams added: 'Upgrading manufacturing capability can be time-consuming and challenging in a busy factory like ours, where installation of new equipment cannot stand in the way of day-to-day production.

'So I'd like to thank everyone who has been involved over the last four years for their hard work in bringing the investment programme to fruition. We are extremely proud of the result – a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, operating with world-leading levels of automation, here in the UK.'

Trox Brothers Limited was formed as a private company in 1962 from an office in London's Bethnal Green. Trox moved production and its head office to a custom-built 50,000 sq ft factory in Thetford nine years later.

But the firm has expanded the site significantly over the last three decades, including testing laboratories and training facilities.