At least 60 disabled auto parts workers will be offered their jobs back after Evtec Automotive rescued a Coventry, England, car parts manufacturer.

The plant is back in business after previous owners Arlington Industries Group went into administration in May 2020.

As part of the rescue for an undisclosed eight figure consideration, the new Evtec Automotive plant on Torrington Avenue, Coventry will continue to make car parts for “many of the major players in the UK automotive sector, with a strong focus on supporting the burgeoning electric vehicle (EV) sector”, a statement said.

The factory has long employed disabled workers. Originally it was part of Remploy, a scheme once sponsored by the UK government Department of Work and Pensions to provide ongoing, sustainable employment for disabled people.

Evtec chairman David Roberts is behind the acquisition which was completed this week. He has a long history with the plant, having acquired it from Remploy back in 2013, as the government scheme disbanded. It was then renamed Rempower and became a part of the Arlington Industries Group, which went into insolvency globally in May 2020 due to the coronavirus hitting car sales and manufacturing supply chains.

Roberts had left Arlington in 2015, for family reasons, but was approached in 2020 by regional car manufacturers to buy the plant out of bankruptcy, and form a new company, Evtec Automotive.

Evtec, under managing director Kevin Hubbard, had been working to fill the plant’s order books while the deal was under negotiation, and has now reached its pre-coronavirus monthly sales of GBP7m, and is on target to rescue approximately 200 jobs by end of March 2021, with 35% being given to disabled workers.

From the 80,000 sq ft plant, Evtec Automotive will continue to supply parts to the automotive industry, including OEMs, Tier One suppliers and the aftermarket. Customers include Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Ford and Nissan, plus Aston Martin, Lotus, [EV taxi and van maker LEVC], McLaren, David Brown Automotive, Little Car Company and Tevva Motors.

Electric vehicles (EV) will be fundamental to the new supplier’s success. As the demand for those grows, so does the requirement for various assemblies that cover battery, cooling wiring and hydraulic systems, widely used in hybrid and electric vehicles.

Roberts said: “The Coventry plant’s rebirth, in 2021, under the Evtec Automotive brand, represents its next natural evolution as it becomes an essential service to OEMs in the UK and Europe for complex assemblies in electrical and cooling systems.

“Re-building on its key ethos of practising disability in the workplace, combined with high ethical and social standards, the business is positioning itself as a key Tier One supplier to the rapidly growing EV sector. With JLR and Ford as major customers and wonderful supporters, the business has an ambitious growth plan as demand for electric vehicles grows. Employing more disadvantaged people combined with a commercial profit… it can’t get any better.”

Roberts sits on a number of company boards and has plans to replicate the model of employing disabled workers across other existing sites and companies.