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Business & Economy

Sumitomo named first tenant at new Durham business park

A division of a global Fortune 500 corporation has been named as the first tenant to sign up for a unit at the new Jade Business Park in Durham.

Sumitomo Electric Wiring Systems Europe (SEWS-E), is an international company that produces and distributes a variety of electrical parts — including automotive wiring harnesses, fuse boxes, connectors, and cables — throughout Europe.

The company boasts a turnover in excess of €700 million and has over 20,000 employees in Europe, and forms part of the Sumitomo Group, a Japanese conglomerate founded in 1615 that now operates in 65 countries.

Jade Business Park, which is currently under construction, is a 55-acre employment site on the outskirts of Murton, providing new space for distribution, technology, and advanced manufacturing businesses.

Once completed, the business park is expected to provide over 1 million sq ft of new employment space, and will support an estimated 2,500 jobs.

The park is owned by Durham County Council, which is also funding the first phase of development, and the site will be managed by Business Durham, the economic development arm of the council.

The project is being delivered in partnership with Highbridge Developments, the company behind Cobalt Park in North Tyneside.

Councillor Alan Napier, deputy leader of the council and its Cabinet member for finance, said: “We are really pleased to announce Jade Business Park’s first tenant; this is the culmination of a tremendous effort from us and a significant moment for the site.

“Jade will ultimately deliver thousands of jobs and be worth tens of millions of pounds for our economy.

“The fact that such a massive global company has chosen to come here is a real vote of confidence in County Durham as a place to do business and we look forward to welcoming Sumitomo and the firms which will follow.”

Minister of State for Local Growth, the Rt Hon Jake Berry MP, said: “We’re committed to boosting economic growth across the Northern Powerhouse and the whole of the UK as we work to level up our regions.

“Through investments like this £4.2 million from the Local Growth Fund, and others across the Northern Powerhouse, we are ensuring that every community has the support it needs to flourish as we leave the EU on 31 October.”

SEWS-E’s new business unit will form part of the first phase of development, with construction due to complete by summer 2020.