Plans for a major multi-million pound cosmetics factory could bring up to 190 jobs to Teesside.
Chemoxy in Billingham has found a way to make paraben-free preservatives for beauty products – and it’s got the world’s largest cosmetic houses excited.
The company is fielding enquiries from ‘household names’ in the US, the Far East and Australasia and says it wants to be the “leading global producer of anti-microbial ingredients”.
Diggers are already preparing ground for the £10m plant, which will create up to 190 direct and indirect jobs during its construction and operation.
Chief executive Ian Stark says it’s the “largest single investment” ever made by Chemoxy, which is one of Teesside’s oldest chemical firms and was once part of ICI Billingham.
“It’s an exciting development,” he said.
“Already the world’s biggest cosmetic houses are interested.
“We will be producing a novel range of cosmetic ingredients to help preserve the shelf life and feel of cosmetics.
“People don’t want parabens in their products; these are a much safer alternative.
“Paraben replacement is a growing sector.
“We are selling the products all over the world in the EU, the US, Japan, Korea, the Far East.
“We are using an innovative process to make these materials which we believe is more cost effective than current procedures, right here on Teesside.
“These are the kind of investments we need in a post-Brexit economy, this is science-led, advanced manufacturing with a global reach.
“We intend to become the largest global producer of anti-microbial ingredients.”
For years parabens have been used to prolong shelf life of skin creams and other cosmetics, allowing them to remain unchanged in the bathroom cabinet for months or even years; but they have suffered a backlash in recent years after being linked to some cancers.
They are also thought to be bad for the environment.
Subject to planning, the plant is expected to come online late this year or early 2020.
A total of £300,000 of grant funding towards the development has been provided by the SSI Task Force, supported by the Tees Valley Combined Authority.
Ian said Chemoxy, which currently employs around 150 people, will be increasing headcount for the new plant and has always been a massive supporter of apprenticeships.
“Some of our senior managers, including plant managers joined as apprentices and have come up through the ranks ,” he added.
“We believe in apprentices it’s a great way to train people without a formal degree, giving them the opportunity to grow in the company.
“We are also supporting Teesside firms that are providing design, fabrication and civil engineering for this project.
“We are excited to bring this brand new plant and jobs to Teesside and would like to thank the Tees Valley Combined Authority, the LEP [Local Enterprise Partnership] and Stockton Council for their support.”
Article credit: The Gazette – read here