Andrew Mitchell MP visited the Webasto Roof Systems plant in Minworth to hear about what the company does in the Royal Town and the car industry issues they are facing.
Webasto, which has been running for over 100 years, is a global automotive company based in Germany. They are a market leading manufacturer of convertible roofs, heating and cooling systems and, in Sutton Coldfield, glass sunroofs for Jaguar Land Rover vehicles. Webasto have also started supplying electric vehicle charging points and are investing heavily in the research and development of battery technology.
Andrew met with the Managing Director, Florian Heilmeier, and his Management Team who explained how, as a Tier 1 supplier to Jaguar Land Rover and despite Jaguar Land Rover production standing down for two weeks, Webasto were able to stay open as normal and avoided laying off their 350 employees – many of whom are from the local area. Instead, they upskilled their workers and utilised their skills.
The team then gave Andrew a tour of the site, showcasing one production line that needs as many as 500 parts to make the sunroof. A sunroof rolls off the end of the line every 120 seconds, equating to nearly 3000 products a week from a single production line! Webasto currently have installed capacity for over 350,000 sunroofs a year which are supplied directly to Jaguar Landrover’s three manufacturing locations in the UK, including Castle Bromwich and Solihull in the West Midlands.
Webasto are also proud to have a community focus and push for local suppliers. They offer work experience for local students in areas such as IT, engineering and administration. Webasto are also one of the four main sponsors for the Great Midlands Fun Run, which takes place in Sutton Coldfield each year.
After his tour Andrew Mitchell said: “This is an important Royal Town business employing hundreds of my constituents. We are proud to have them here in Sutton Coldfield for so many years and are determined that they continue to thrive and prosper.”