£2m investment provides manufacturing jobs boost

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JOBS are being created at a Yorkshire-based manufacturing firm following a £2m investment in new equipment.

Roberts Mart is increasing the size of its Leeds-based production facility to meet the growing demand for its packaging films.

The family-run firm has bought the BOBST 20SIX eight colour printing press, a Nordmeccanica Super Simplex Laminator and Proslit Slitter Rewinder.

The business currently employs around 170 people across both its sites in Leeds. Once fully implemented, the latest investment is expected to increase the workforce to 190.

Roberts Mart’s sales director, Ben Roberts, said: “It has been a busy year for the company. This significant investment in new equipment is possible because we have a healthy order book – with a good number of new orders coming through the pipeline as well.

“We are seeing growth across the board, particularly in the food sector where we are seeing much more opportunity in snacks and confectionery. Normally, you would spread capital expenditure out over a period of time but the amount of new business we are winning dictates that, this time, it has been made all at once. The slitter is in place already, while the laminator and printing press are coming in during August.”

Roberts Mart was founded by William Roberts in 1852. After initially focusing on paper merchanting, commercial printing and producing paper bags, it has now developed into one of the UK’s biggest specialist producers of high performance packaging films used in sectors including food, beverage and household textiles like duvets. Co-directors William and Ben are the sixth generation of the Roberts family to run the firm.