Leading personal wash company, PZ Cussons, has officially unveiled its new, purpose-
built £26 million Innovation Centre in Agecroft, Salford.
Coinciding with the 125th anniversary of PZ Cussons, the opening of the centre brings a significant investment to Salford and the Northwest and creates an international centre of excellence at the forefront of innovation in the washing and bathing sector.
The UK’s number one personal wash company, which employs 430 people in the Northwest, chose to remain in the region despite opportunities to relocate to one of several European locations and continues to play a key role in the Northwest economy.
The Innovation Centre, built on a former coalmine in Agecroft, houses three departments in two buildings:
· Innovation Centre-Heart, including state-of-the-art UK and International Research and Development facilities where new formulations and new technologies will be created on site.
· Innovation Centre-Perfumery, consisting of ‘Fragrance by PZ Cussons’ perfume manufacturing where fragrances for the UK business and the wider PZ Group will be created and produced.
· Innovation Centre-Liquids, including Technical Supply Chain and high speed Liquids Manufacturing, significantly increasing capacity for the manufacture of the Group’s UK liquid product ranges, such as Carex and Imperial Leather.
A total of 156 staff are employed across both buildings, with production, technical, administrative and management roles all held at the site. Two thirds of the staff at the centre fulfil manufacturing roles while the remaining third is made up of Research and Development, and Perfumery roles.
The Innovation Centre site was purchased from the Northwest Regional Development Agency and took two years to build, with the first phase starting in January 2007 and the second phase completing in January 2009, a project undertaken by contractors, CRBE, and architects, Bennett’s.
Colin Sinclair, Chief Executive of MIDAS, Manchester’s Inward Investment Agency said: “PZ Cussons remains one of our city region’s true international success stories, and this multi-million pound facility will be fantastic for Salford and the wider city region. Choosing to remain in Greater Manchester also means that their future growth will be supported by our city region’s large, highly-skilled workforce.”
Alex Kanellis, Chief Executive of PZ Cussons said: “Our UK business has been expanding rapidly and the significant investment in the Innovation Centre will provide the foundations for further long term growth, and cements our presence in the North West of England. We’re committed to developing leading brands and product ranges and aim to be a continued centre of excellence for the PZ Cussons global personal wash network.”
The investment in new manufacturing facilities allows for significantly more production capacity than was available at the previous production sites in Kersal Vale and Ellesmere Port.
Washing and bathing products and fragrances across the PZ Cussons group are developed at the Innovation Centre, with Imperial Leather (Shower, Bath and Handwash), Carex Handwash and Morning Fresh washing up liquid being manufactured on the production line. Original Source will be produced at the centre from September when the last production line is installed.
Housing approximately 800 ingredients for use in product development on site, many unusual raw materials are used to create fragrances in the fragrance manufacturing centre, including Rose Otto, a natural essential oil obtained from rose petals, costing over £5,000 per kilogram.