Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls has visited audio manufacturer Coomber Electronic Equipment to view the progress of the fast-developing Midland firm.
The Labour front bencher was treated to a guided tour and met with a number of employees at the Worcester-based business as he travelled from Warwickshire – his only stop in the county as part of the election campaign.
The firm is the UK’s leading manufacturer of audio equipment for the education sector and the visit by Mr Balls came only two months after it was purchased by the county consortium of Tony Bennett, Aaron Kernaghan and Simon Williams.
Mr Balls was visiting with Labour’s Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Worcester, Joy Squires, who is challenging the seat held by Conservative Robin Walker.
He toured the factory floor, trying his hand at making some of the Coomber equipment whose customers include a variety of UK schools, the Old Bailey, leisure centres and dance studios. The firm, which was founded in 1908, is also a major supplier to the fitness and corporate sectors.
Coomber’s Managing Director Aaron Kernaghan said: “We have a highly skilled workforce and were particularly keen to discuss with the Shadow Chancellor what Labour is offering to small and medium sized enterprises should it win the keys to number ten.
“It’s always fantastic to showcase our products, our people and show how we manufacture some industry-leading innovations.
“Mr Balls took a genuine interest in our story and our plans to build on the company’s rich heritage this year and beyond.”
Ed Balls added: “Coomber stands out as one of Britain’s success stories so I was delighted to meet their team and tour the firm’s manufacturing facility in Worcester where we had a great discussion about what a thriving firm like theirs needs from government.
“It’s clear that their focus on cutting-edge innovation, new markets and product development means Coomber has a bright future in store – and I wish them every success.”
Coomber is one of only a few businesses in the UK to have Apple MFI and DFI licences and it designs and builds audio and visual products such as sound amplifiers, CD players, microphones and headphones.