County Durham-based conveying and automated handling specialist, Advance Automated Systems, is set to expand its operation by establishing a satellite projects office in Leicestershire. The move coincides with the announcement of two new key appointments.

Operating from a 18,000 sq ft manufacturing site, Advance provide a fully integrated single source for the design, manufacture and installation of conveyors, conveyor systems and controls. Alongside existing business and the addition of new contracts acquired throughout the UK, the company has taken a lease on office space in Lutterworth, primarily to bolster product support during the design, installation and commissioning phases of projects in the central and south of the country.

Ahead of the office becoming operational in early February 2020, Advance has also appointed Brian Skelham as a senior project engineer to head-up the new venture. Previously employed as a business project manager at online retailer, Ocado, based in Tamworth, Staffs, Skelham brings nearly 30 years of materials handling experience to the role. Combining extensive skills in engineering, project management, finance, e-commerce and operational support, he will look after a portfolio of Advance’s key central and southern customers, as well as having business development and sales responsibilities. 

“With an increasing number of contracts in the southern half of the country and placing more of an emphasis on providing a fully integrated offering, we have had to extend our reach by creating a satellite projects office,” said Advance’s Bryn Roberts. “We also needed someone highly capable to manage this new undertaking, so by having someone of Brian’s calibre joining us, particularly at a time when we look to fully optimise growth opportunities, is ideal.”

Advance has also reinforced their northern structure with the appointment of Adam Robinson. A former design engineer with the company, Robinson returns to a new position as a project engineer, with an emphasis on sales.

“It’s really good to have Adam back in the fold,” added Roberts. “He’ll be working more on the simulation side of the business for the larger projects, out visiting customers and supporting external sales in the north of the country, as well as providing technical support as and when required.”

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