Freight hub brings major jobs boost to Wigan

Steve Burns, Wigan Council, Coun David Molyneux, Wayne Chapman, managing director for mda and Andrew Dickman, db symmetry at the new M6 Epic 110+ site
Steve Burns, Wigan Council, Coun David Molyneux, Wayne Chapman, managing director for mda and Andrew Dickman, db symmetry at the new M6 Epic 110+ site

A giant firm is to open a new logistics base in Wigan, delivering a major shot in the armfor jobs and investment in the borough.

Mda, a company specialising in the design, procurement, storage and distribution of marketing materials for leading brands across Europe, is to be based in the new M6 Epic 110+ site on South Lancs Industrial Estate in Ashton.

The new M6 Epic 110+ site

The new M6 Epic 110+ site

The new Wigan base, the company’s fifth warehouse in the UK, will mean the creation of 90 permanent jobs over the next three years and up to 150 additional temporary posts at peak times.

Mda was founded in Blackpool in 1987 and is now part of Bunzl plc, a £6.5bn FTSE 100 multi-national company.

It is market-leader in the UK for providing point of sale marketing materials to many international brands. It has two bases in Blackburn, two warehouses in the Midlands making a combined footprint, prior to the opening of the new warehouse, of more than 500,000ft sq.

The company has an aggressive growth plan and needed to expand into a new facility.

This is another great example of large companies choosing our borough for their logistics operations

Coun David Molyneux

After a search of various locations across the North West the company chose Wigan.

Coun David Molyneux, Wigan Council’s deputy leader, said the announcement was a major vote of confidence in Wigan’s business-friendly approach, available workforce and excellent location. He said: “We are delighted that a business of the calibre of mda has chosen Wigan borough as the location for their new logistics centre. This is a business that has a proven track-record of success and we are confident that their move into Ashton-in-Makerfield will be a fruitful and successful one for the company.

“This is another great example of large companies choosing our borough for their logistics operations. We have opportunities for investment, great connections, a prime location next to the M6 and the right attitude to help businesses succeed and expand.”

The council is working with mda to ensure local people are targeted in the recruitment process and that there are opportunities for apprenticeships.

The M6 Epic site follows Legal and General and db symmetry’s builds for two nearby colossal warehouses for Poundland and Compagnie Fruitiere which will together deliver close to 1,000 jobs over the coming years.

Coun Molyneux thanked Legal and General and db symmetry for having the confidence to “Invest in Wigan” and in the South Lancs estate. He added: “I hope they continue to work with us and deliver more high quality logistics sites in the borough as there is a huge demand to be based in Wigan within this sector.”

Work is now under way on fitting out the building and it is expected to be operational early next year.

Wayne Chapman, mda’s managing director, said: “We are thrilled to be opening our fifth base in Wigan. This is a major step forward for mda and will help us drive forward our ambitions for the business to expand and grow while continuing to provide excellent service to all our clients. I would like to thank Wigan Council for their support in assisting our move into the borough. In our dealings with the council we have only encountered pro-activity, pragmatism and support.”

As well as the huge warehouse space on the 110,000ft sq site, the building includes 10 level access doors and two drive-in doors, 22 trailer spaces, 122 car parking spaces and modern office facilities. It also has planning permission to expand a further 70,000 sq ft.