Investment from China to create 70 jobs in Port
One of China’s largest TV manufacturers has opened its European
manufacturing HQ in Wales where it is planned to create 70 new jobs
with support from the Welsh Government.
The £1.6million investment by Tongfang (THTF) in its new
assembly facility on Kenfig Industrial Estate, Port Talbot, was
supported by £600,000 business finance from the Welsh Government,
and is on target to employ seventy people by October this year.
Official figures released yesterday by UKTI show that Wales
attracted 79 foreign direct inward investment projects in 2013-14 –
a record result in the past 24 years – creating and safeguarding
10,441 jobs. THTF is one of those inward investment projects.
THTF is part of Tongfang Global, which is headquartered in
Hong Kong, and has international manufacturing bases in the US,
Malaysia and Shenyang where it has the largest TV manufacturing
facility in Northern China employing 1200 people.
The company produces flat panel TVs, digital TVs and LED
backlight modules while its research and investment in flat panel
televisions has resulted in the company gaining a significant
presence in the world’s TV industry. Its Seiki brand is the second
largest selling television in its sector within the US where it
supplies Walmart and Amazon amongst others.
First Minister Carwyn Jones said:
“China is a major market with massive inward
investment potential and a market Wales has been targeting
diligently through business and cultural visits, trade missions,
business links and trading agreements . I am delighted to welcome
THTF to Wales and congratulate the company on its excellent
progress to date. It’s good news to hear it is creating jobs well
ahead of schedule and finding Wales a great location for its new
Economy Minister Edwina Hart said:
“THTF was considering another location in
Europe for this investment so I am particularly pleased that
support and funding from the Welsh Government helped secured the
project for Wales.
“The local skills base was another key factor
in their decision to choose Wales. There are a number of former
Orion employees in the area with skills and experience of working
in consumer electronics so I’m pleased to hear that a number of
these people are now working at THTF including some of the senior
Philip Jones, Director, THTF UK , said:
“Tongfang Global already supplies a number of
key retailers in the UK from China and having this facility in
Wales means we can offer our customers a much better service with
shorter lead times. We have ambitious plans to grow the business
and will initially target the UK retail market before supplying
Europe although we received our first order from France this
The production lines were only installed at their facility in
April and the company has already created 45 jobs, five of which
are supported through the Welsh Government’s Skills Growth Wales
It plans to start manufacturing the next generation of 4K Ultra
HD televisions in August to supply to UK retailers and will be the
first TV manufacturer in the UK to build these advanced models.
THTF has already gained the necessary industry accreditations,
has signed up for Investors in people and rolling out a workforce
development plan. It has also forged links with Gower College
offering students practical work experience
When Orion closed in 2010 Philip Jones and Simon Lucas who were
administration manager and manufacturing manager respectively saw a
niche in the market and opened Vision Electronics to provide
aftersales service and repair to support overseas electronic
manufacturers, including TongFang.
Both have considerable experience in the sector and helped set
up the new operation for TongFang and are now Directors of THTF