Rishi Sunak visits gearbox manufacturer to see success in exports and skills

Automotive transmission specialist Xtrac welcomed Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to its Thatcham headquarters in Berkshire last week, including a tour of the company's design and manufacturing facilities. 

The company creates advanced gearboxes used by motorsport teams worldwide and in high-performance road cars. It exports around 70% of its manufacturing output globally.

“It was great to meet the team at Xtrac today and talk about their world-class apprenticeship schemes,” the Prime Minister commented on social media. “Xtrac is a West Berkshire success story.  It’s a local Thatcham business that’s now at the heart of Formula 1, Indycar, and NASCAR successes all over the world.  It’s also a shining example of apprenticeship success in manufacture and advanced engineering.”

“It was such a pleasure to welcome the Prime Minister to Thatcham to meet the brilliant team and visit their outstanding apprenticeship academy,” said Laura Farris, local MP.

Ms Farris officially opened the Xtrac Academy, a dedicated apprenticeship facility providing hands-on manufacturing and computer-aided engineering skills training for apprentices, in March 2022.

She added: “Over the years, Xtrac has trained more than 180 apprentices in advanced manufacturing and engineering, many of whom have gone on to accomplish great things at Xtrac and beyond.”

Xtract CEO Adrian Moore informed the Prime Minister the automotive industry is going through a transformation that only happens once in a generation.

He said: "This transformation involves the evolution of the automobile from internal combustion engine vehicles to decarbonised electric propulsion. Xtrac's highly skilled and capable staff in the UK and USA show agility and innovation time after time, which is essential for the vehicle's transmission system, one of the crucial technologies required for this transition.”

Xtrac has trained apprentices since the 1990s and works with Newbury College to deliver its apprenticeships in advanced manufacturing.

In 2020, the company was recognised for its technological innovation with the Queen’s Award for Enterprise and it has also won Princess Royal Training Awards. 

One in seven (14%) of its 490 employees started as an apprentice or undergraduate. Its first-ever apprentice, Simon Short, who qualified in 1993, now holds a senior role in Xtrac's North American operations.

In addition to providing apprenticeships, Xtrac offers an award-winning undergraduate scheme, a work experience scheme for pupils from years 10, 11 and 12, and summer internships for university students.  For more information on Xtrac Academy schemes, please visit: https://www.xtrac.com/xtrac-academy/




Xtrac Ltd

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