Updated: 5th February 2020
An engineering company involved in supplying services to oil and gas industry operators is expecting to enter administration and put 124 jobs at risk in the process.
Universal Engineering has a factory in Llantrisant in South Wales and a plant in Weymouth in Devon with workers at both currently unsure of whether or not their employment with the business will continue.
Administrators are set to be appointed to manage the company’s affairs with a decline in demand within the oil and gas sector blamed for Universal being unable to avoid serious financial difficulties and the prospect of insolvency.
The Welsh government supported the creation of the company’s Llantrisant factory last year with a £600,000 grant and was intending to add a further £1.4 million worth of investment at a later date.
It was hoped that the expansion of the engineering firm’s business and its presence in South Wales would lead to the creation of around 200 jobs in the Rhondda Cynon Taf area north west of Cardiff.
A spokesperson for the Welsh government said: “We will work closely with the company to try to find a buyer for the site and offer support to the employees to find new work.”
Official statements from the government have made clear that its £600,000 grant is not at risk of being lost and that its financial support was always dependant on a certain number of jobs being created.
Universal Engineering’s facility in South Wales was only opened in the first half of 2015 with the company apparently aiming to make inroads into defence and aerospace sectors.
Welsh economy minister Edwina Hart said at on official ceremony to open the factory in Llantrisant that the company was “exactly the type of advanced manufacturing investment we want to attract”.
Henry Game, from the Bland Group UK which owns Universal Engineering, said: “We deeply regret having to take this decision [to enter administration]. We appreciate that this will be a very difficult time for all employees and we will try to provide as much information and support as we can during this process.” Real Business Rescue provide director advice online, over the phone, or in-person at one of our 77 UK offices or a place of your convenience.