22 May, 2022

Sunderland automation and robotics firm expands to meet rising demand from car manufacturing sector

09 October, 2019

A successful Sunderland tech business which works with some of the world’s leading car manufacturers is expanding following growth fuelled by the region’s automotive sector.

Established six years ago, fast-growing AR Controls currently employs 37 people and utilises its innovative robotics and technology to supply services to the likes of Nissan and Jaguar Land Rover. The new premises will allow the business to expand on current services and help increase headcount to around 45-50 staff in the next 12-18 months.

The fast turnaround, technology-driven firm delivers significant productivity and quality improvements to its customers’ processes, while also driving down costs and reducing risk.

AR Controls has now expanded into a new 12,000 sq ft unit on Sunderland's Sunrise Enterprise Park, following an extended period of sustained growth. The automation business has agreed a lease on the new premises and plans to fully acquire the property inside 18 months, adding to its existing estate which includes its 18,000 sq ft headquarters, also at Sunrise Enterprise Park, and a further base in North Hylton.

The company was assisted in its negotiations by commercial property lawyers at leading North East law firm for businesses Muckle LLP.

Positive outlook

Andrew Ramsey, managing director of AR Controls, said: “Despite many negative projections about the UK’s automotive manufacturing sector, the growth our business has seen over the last two years is incredibly positive and I’m tremendously excited about the future.

“We work with some of the world’s leading automation suppliers in sensing, position control, visual inspection, machine safety, audio-indent, robotics, drives and programmable logic control, and we employ a safety first, design and development philosophy.

“Our sustained growth has given us added confidence to continue building and developing the business and I’m delighted to have completed the lease with the option to buy these new premises, which will help us to continue our trajectory of expansion.

“The practical legal advice we received from Muckle also made a major difference in successfully negotiating this deal and it is encouraging to know we have a law firm on our doorstep that is sophisticated enough to support our objectives and ambition.”

Giles McCourt, associate in Muckle LLP’s Real Estate team, added: “AR Controls is a highly innovative business and their creativity, confidence and commitment to the region has been rewarded by increased demand for its market leading services and we’re excited to support Andrew and the team as the business continues to grow.

“As a commercial lawyer, who lives in Sunderland and works for a law firm that is passionate about the region’s businesses and its economy, it’s fantastic to see such a dynamic North East company making its mark in the automotive manufacturing tech sector.”

Image caption - Taking control: Andrew Ramsey, AR Controls (left); and Giles McCourt, Muckle, with AR Controls’ robotics technology.

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