Bhagat Holdings is to invest £9 million on the site and will be supported by a £1.7m Regional Selective Assistance grant from Scottish Enterprise. The food processor plans to create 120 jobs initially, with the potential for more in the future.
Keshav Bhagat, managing director of Bhagat Holdings, said: “We’re thrilled with the site in Annan as it’s ideal for our ambitious breadcrumb, dry mixes, and fish & chicken coating operations. We know there’s a highly skilled local workforce that can help us grow our business, and that’s one of the key reasons we chose to locate in Scotland.
“Our employees are at the heart of what we do and that’s why I’m very pleased to confirm that our jobs will pay above the Scottish Government’s Living Wage.
“I’d like to acknowledge the warm welcome and support we’ve had from Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise, Dumfries and Galloway Council and others, and we look forward to playing an active part in our local community.”
The site, formerly owned by Young’s Seafood, closed at the end of 2018 with the loss of 450 jobs due to it being deemed “no longer financially sustainable”.
Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said: “I’m delighted that an international company like Bhagat Holdings has chosen to invest in Scotland, with the immediate creation of a significant number of jobs, which will make a real difference to local people and the local economy.
“When Young’s closed last summer, I said that we would leave no stone unturned and we would keep working to find a solution and an alternative use for this site. That hard work has now paid off and it is Annan and the local community and families who will benefit. I want to highlight the diligent efforts of Scottish Government staff, working with Dumfries and Galloway Council, Scottish Enterprise, the South of Scotland Economic Partnership, and local partners for the past year, to make this happen.”
Earlier this month, Samworth Brothers won approval for an extension at its site in Leicester, which will create 150 new jobs.