The Welsh Government’s unique Economic Resilience Fund (ERF) has helped safeguard more than 470 jobs at two Swansea-based businesses against the economic effects of the coronavirus.
Manufacturer Toyoda Gosei UK Ltd and car retailer C.E.M. Day Ltd are both important employers in the area and were severely impacted as a result of the pandemic.
C.E.M. Day received £357,000 from the Welsh Government’s ERF, to maintain limited operations and help protect the livelihoods of more than 350 staff members.
Toyoda Gosei UK Ltd, which specialises in automotive parts and LEDs, received £116,000 from the ERF.
This has helped the business continue to operate and ultimately protect its workforce.
The ERF, which is part of the Welsh Government’s £1.7bn support package for businesses, is providing thousands of companies across Wales with significant financial support. It complements the help provided by the UK Government.
To date, the Welsh Government’s Economic Resilience Fund has delivered almost £300 million of support to more than 13,000 companies in Wales, helping to safeguard over 100,000 jobs.
Leighton Davies, of C.E.M. Day Ltd, said: “The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on our business has been catastrophic and resulted in the temporary closure of the majority of our dealerships.
“The financial assistance of the Welsh Government through its Economic Resilience Fund was instrumental in protecting the employment of a significant number of our employees. It also enabled the company to maintain a franchise presence at a number of our dealership locations.”
Amanda Howse, senior human resources manager at Toyoda Gosei UK Ltd, said: “The funding Toyoda Gosei Wales received as part of the Economic Resilience Fund allowed us to protect our workforce through the coronavirus pandemic.
“It gave us the flexibility to continue our supply to customers whilst coping with volume fluctuations and peaks and troughs in demand.
“Most of our work cannot be completed from home so it was also critical to make sure our workers have been confident in the measures we have taken to ensure their health and safety whilst they are on site.”
Economy Minister Ken Skates said: “Coronavirus has placed incredibly difficult challenges on our business community this year. In response we have worked hard to try and protect companies, jobs and livelihoods through an unprecedented package of support, delivered at pace, worth more than £1.7bn. This is the most generous offer of help for businesses anywhere in the UK.
“Our Economic Resilience Fund has been a key part of that and I am pleased it has provided crucial financial assistance to C.E.M. Day Ltd and Toyoda Gosei UK Ltd at a time when they needed it most, helping protect hundreds of jobs.
“We know businesses face continued pressures and need further assistance and we are continuing to explore further options for supporting firms through the pandemic and helping them prepare for life after the EU transition period has ended.”