Dozens of jobs to be created after £1m Korean deal agreed

PUBLISHED: 12:00 09 March 2019

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

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A South West manufacturer hopes to bring more than 50 jobs to North Somerset after signing a deal worth more than £1million with a South Korean company.

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

Global Design Solutions (GDS) met with Gyeonggi province delegates at Leigh Court Business Centre in Abbots Leigh, at the start of March to sign an agreement to invest £1.4million into the East Asian country.

North Somerset MP and Secretary of State for International Trade, Dr Liam Fox, welcomed the deal, and believes the creation of 52 jobs is ‘a huge positive’ for the region.

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

Dr Fox exclusively told the Times: “Of the top 10 trading nations in the South West, only four are European.

“With my job, I am trying to get as much attention to the area as possible, so this deal is a huge positive.

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

“Supporting UK companies to invest in overseas markets is a core component of what my international economic department does and it has real benefits for people.

“We have got low unemployment levels in North Somerset so the question is how do we get better jobs as it is about quality, and this deal goes a long way towards achieving even lower rates.”

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

GDS is the UK’s leading LED manufacturer and produces award-winning products on a global scale.

The deal will see GDS make a significant investment in South Korea, which will in turn create 100 jobs in both countries over the next five years.

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

Gyeonggi is known as South Korea’s largest revenue generating region and the centre of the manufacturing industry.

Since 2017, the GDS Korea offices have been based in the province to benefit from the progressive growth in the area.

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

During this time, GDS has successfully utilised its technology, to facilitate growth for both regional and export markets in UK and Korea.

Shin Whoan Park, assistant governor for economy and labour in Gyeonggi, said: “This collaboration will serve as a chance to jointly advance into the Asian and European market.

Liam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte FenwickLiam Fox and GDS met with Korean Gyeonggi province delegates in Abbots Leigh. Picture: Charlotte Fenwick

“I believe this investment will become good practice of global cooperation at both the country and business level.”

GDS estimates a turnover of more than £10million by 2023, with a calculated net profit of 15 per cent in its Korean operation.

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