Theresa May officially opens Thales' new UK headquarters
The PM joined the global defence giant for the opening of its new UK headquarters and R&D centre in Reading, which will create 500 new jobs.
Prime Minister Theresa May was given a tour of Thales’ new UK HQ earlier this week by Thales UK CEO Victor Chavez and group COO Pierre Eric Pommellet.
May was shown a number of key projects for Thales in the UK including the European Aviation Network, which will provide 4G connectivity on flights across Europe and some of the lifesaving capabilities developed for our armed forces.
The PM was also given an opportunity to meet a number of the 350 graduates and apprentices Thales employs in the UK to hear how the company participates in activities to promote STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) to address the UK’s engineering shortage and increase diversity.
The opening of the state of the art facility in Green Park, Reading, reaffirms Thales as a major contributor to the UK economy. The new site is bringing 500 highly skilled jobs to the area – including 300 specialised engineers – with capacity to accommodate a further 100 jobs as Thales grows in the region.
This is a significant part of Thales’s overall contribution to UK prosperity, employing 6,500 people with annual revenues of £1.3bn.
The new site also promotes Thales’s emphasis on fostering innovation, being one of the company’s five global centres specifically designed to focus on research and technology –spending around £70m annually in the UK on research and technology.
May said: “It was a great pleasure to join Alok Sharma to officially open Thales UK’s Headquarters in Green Park. I really enjoyed meeting some of the staff who are going to work at the site, including several apprentices who are beginning a career in engineering.
“2018 is the Year of Engineering and it’s so important we encourage our young people to take up careers in this vitally important area.”
Chavez added: “The move to Green Park represents a strategic step forward for Thales, bringing together some of our key businesses with our Research team to ensure we remain on the cutting edge of customer-focused, technology and business model innovation.
“This new world-class workspace sets the benchmark for future working environments across Thales in the UK; designed to enable collaboration with customers, partners and suppliers as well as supporting our move to Smart Working.”