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Milestone for manufacturing firm
A FAMILY-RUN engineering firm which manufactures equipment for the oil, gas, chemical and offshore industries has employed its 100th mamber of staff after seeing orders rise by one-fifth in a year.
Stockton-based Francis Brown Ltd has expanded its workforce to meet the demands for its services from these growing sectors and is preparing for the next phase of extending the company's manufacturing facility.
Over the last 12 months, the volume of work undertaken by the company from clients operating in these markets has increased by 20 per cent, prompting the firm to recruit a team of platers, welders and machinists.
The firm is now recruiting for another three estimators to join the commercial department and has increased its apprenticeship provision with a three young people beginning their training this month.
The company's management team has also been boosted with two new appointments - Chris Stoddart has been appointed as commercial manager while Tony Vincent has been given the role of procurement manager.
Mr Stoddart has extensive experience in the manufacturing and steel industries, but this move sees him to return to his roots in engineering.
He began his career as a technical apprentice with Head Wrightson, before spending 17 years in project management for a brick and tile manufacturer.
He went onto to become general manager in the firm's structural steel sector before joining Francis Brown.
Mr Vincent spent the last 20 years in the automotive industry supplying parts to manufacturers including Nissan, Jaguar Land Rover and Bentley.
He brings a strong background in lean manufacturing, which is synonymous with the car industry and a process that is being effectively applied at Francis Brown.
Jamie Brown, managing director of Francis Brown, said: "As an established part of the energy sector supply chain we have benefited from a strong oil and gas sector, alongside the buoyant other markets we serve, which has enabled us to further grow our workforce and achieve the proud milestone of 100 employees.
"We are planning to build on the position we have achieved, which includes strengthening our management team.
"Chris and Tony bring extensive experience and expertise and they will have key roles to play in supporting our future growth."