Mellor Coachcraft is set to spread into an adjacent site in Rochdale, as export ambitions and its product range signals expansion
Mellor Coachcraft is to expand its factory site in Rochdale with the acquisition of the neighbouring industrial unit and land.
The Miall Street site has long been cramped for vehicle movement outside of the production hall, despite investment shortly after the Woodall Nicholson Group bought Mellor. Now, it will be able to spread its operation into a former boat repair yard which includes a 20,000 square foot unit.
“It’s a £0.5 million investment,” said Brian Davidson, Woodall Nicholson Chairman. “It allows us to achieve our growth plan, which will take us from £40 million turnover to £50 million next year, and profits in line with the growth.
“We’re privately owned which means we can make our own decisions. We have now created six products in two years, and our success with the Strata has been phenomenal.
“On a low to average duty cycle, the [Sprinter-based] Strata can deliver £15,000 in fuel savings. The drivetrain option is expensive, but it’s worth it. With vehicles now in stage carriage service, operators are beginning to fully understand the economics of the product.”
Brian said Tucana had also turned a corner: “When we acquired Bluebird, Tucana had a few issues, but we put four experienced design engineers on to it at £100,000 cost, and it is now getting orders. We’ve also delivered 100 Orions this year.”
Mellor has sought and signed up European distributors for left-hand drive Strata and Orion E, which will be launched to mainland Europe at Busworld in Kortrijk, Belgium. For Brian Davidson, who ran Plaxton until 2007, it’s been a homecoming.
“It’s great fun being back in the business,” he told Bus & Coach Buyer.
Mellor grabbed plenty of attention at this year’s Coach and Bus UK exhibition.