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Prefab homes factory opens in Feilding, creating 100 jobs

Builtsmart Transportable Homes Factory in Feilding
Builtsmart Transportable Homes Factory in Feilding

Prefab homes factory opens in Feilding, creating 100 jobs
Manawatū Standard
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A new prefabricated homes factory has opened in Feilding that the company says will create about 100 jobs.

Waikato-based Builtsmart makes transportable houses and classrooms, with 110 construction bays across Huntly, Gisborne and now Feilding, Manawatū.

Company founder and director Phillip Leather said the new factory would help to meet a growing demand for transportable houses in the North Island.

The off-site manufacturing facility, on a 1.9-hectare site, was opened on Thursday by Prime Minister Christopher Luxon during his visit to the town.

Leather said the factory "enables us to increase production significantly and address the need for quality housing in communities across New Zealand".

The new 34 construction bays in Feilding will take the company's yearly building capacity to 500 new homes and classrooms.

Builtsmart has previously worked with Kāinga Ora, and with iwi to provide new houses to people affected by Cyclone Gabrielle.

In December 2022, the company delivered 26 factory-built homes to Rotorua. When the cyclone hit Gisborne and Hawke's Bay, Builtsmart was contracted to build 150 prefabricated houses for the flooded areas.

Builtsmart's new transportable homes factory in Feilding has 34 construction bays.

"It is a challenging time for the building and construction industry," Leather said.

"But we have a commitment to consistently innovate and produce a quality product for our clients at an affordable price."

He said the company had 150 existing employees, and the new factory would create 100 additional roles.

"As we've done in Huntly and Gisborne, a key focus for us in Fielding will be to provide opportunities for young people to develop their skills and set them up for a great career in the building and construction sector.

"We work really hard to retain top talent, but many of the young people we have trained as apprentices have gone on to create their own successful businesses.

He founded the company in 1982, and it had remained a family business.

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