London, UK Sumitomo Electrical Wiring Systems is making a £2.2 million investment to expand its existing automotive wiring systems operation at Ystradgynlais in the Swasea Valley.
The company is beefing up its European operations for growth and while some operations will be based in France and Germany, the company's major research centre will be based at the Welsh location due to the expertise of its local staff and its strong links with University College Swansea and Cardiff University.
The planned development of an Auto Technium centre by the Welsh Development Agency at Llanelli to help the development of the automotive component sector is also said to be another important factor in company's decision.
Sumitomo's investment will safeguard 100 jobs and create some 15 skilled additional jobs as the Welsh plant takes responsibility for leading some of the company's European research and development work. The WDA is building a 11,000 sq. ft. extension to double the size of Sumitomo's existing premises in the south Powys town.
Sep up in the the eighties, the Welsh plant has specialised in testing and developing wiring systems for Sumitomo's European car-making customers and in managing supply contracts undertaken by the group's main manufacturing plants in Europe.