An award-winning packaging firm which works with some of the UK’s best-known food producers and supermarkets is set for a multi-million-pound expansion of its headquarters.
The family-run Wilkins Group, based on Colwick Industrial Estate, in Nottinghamshire, will create extra jobs with this extension, which aims to increase capacity in production of food packaging. It will make the site one of the biggest family-run factories in the sector.
Bosses at the firm, which employs 300 staff at its head office, say the 50,000 sq ft extension will increase turnover – currently on course for £45m this year, up by 20 per cent year on year. The three-acre addition to the site will also bring an investment in around multiple new machines.
The Wilkins family said: “By investing in this extension, we will extend the production facility at our headquarters, and this could eventually mean the creation of a significant number of new jobs for the local area. There currently isn’t the capacity to cope with demand in the food packaging sector and this extension will assist in the shortage in capacity.”
“It’s going to be one of the single biggest production plants in the UK and will easily be the biggest family-run packaging facility in the sector.”
“It will also give us some extra capacity to assist in the environmental push towards cardboard packaging and away from plastic.”
The firm said it was determined to build on the success of a very productive 12 months.
“During the pandemic, we haven’t stopped as a business,” said the Wilkins family. “We are very lucky to be in that position and feel very sorry for sectors and businesses which have not survived.”
The firm, which won the International Trade Award at the Midlands Family Business Awards and also has hubs in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and China, was granted planning permission in September last year and is now in full swing of the development project.
The development will include the demolition of some existing units. The construction, at the rear of the current HQ, on Private Road Number 1, will be carried out by Lincolnshire-based Lindum Group, and demolition works will be completed by Total Reclaims Demolition.
Lindum construction manager Mark Leason said that Lindum had been working with Wilkins Group for more than two years to bring the project forward, having first been introduced by a mutual contact prior to the Covid outbreak.
“As a family-run, practical business, Wilkins Group shares many of the same principles as Lindum Group and we quickly developed a very positive working relationship,” said Mark.
“Our construction experts have worked alongside their team to help develop the design of the new building. As the pandemic went on, and Wilkins Group’s requirements evolved, we’ve been able to offer informed advice to make the best use of their space and their budget.”
“We are very pleased to now be on site and to be seeing good progress on the construction work.”
Work is underway and is expected to be complete by late summer 2022.