A new employer is coming to Martinsville.
On May 1, Radical Sportscars—a UK-based racecar manufacturer—will establish its U.S. sales office in Patrick Henry Community College’s Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology [MET] Complex on Motorsports Drive.
Initially, Radical anticipates the sales office to be utilized by up to 4 company officials: the CEO, CFO, as well as a sales and a factory representative.
Based in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, Radical Sportscars is a world-class leader in the production and exporting of its own designed and manufactured racing cars and track cars sold to markets around the world. Thirty-two (32) franchised dealer partners and numerous teams provide an unparalleled opportunity for drivers of all ages and skill levels to race in a portfolio of Radical Championship series at major racetracks throughout the world. Formed in 1987, the company has produced over 2,300 racing cars to date.
“The USA is our largest market by far, accounting for over 50% of all new vehicle sales worldwide that are sold through a well-established network of partners, based across North America, who are the jewels in the Radical Crown,” Joe Anwyll, CEO of Radical Sportscars, said. “In order to properly service their needs and the needs of our customers, it was vital to be present in the USA and with the immense help, support and guidance we have received in Martinsville-Henry County VA, we are delighted that this long held strategic ambition has become a reality that will over time develop into a manufacturing, distribution, technical and marketing centre for all Radical Sportscars activities throughout North America.”
“The Martinsville-Henry County EDC assisted Radical in analyzing the North American market, hosting visits in Henry County as well as visiting their operations in the UK over the past three years. The EDC and PHCC staff have been very impressed with the Radical brand which is well known and respected worldwide. We are excited they have chosen to partner with the Racing College and we are hopeful the sales operations are the first of many exciting developments here,” said Larry Ryder, chairman of the Martinsville Henry County Economic Development Corp.’s Board of Directors.
By moving into the MET, Radical Sportscars will be next door to PHCC’s Racing College of Virginia—a program that has produced engineers, officials, and crewmen for several NASCAR teams and performance race shops. According to officials, the programs’ almost two decade-long track record for producing work-ready graduates was a primary factor in Radical’s decision to move into the MET Complex and to locate their U.S. sales office in Martinsville and Henry County. Radical Sportscars indicated they will likely hire many Racing College students and graduates. Moreover, the company anticipates working with the Racing College faculty to provide training to their U.S. staff as needed.
“Martinsville-Henry County has a rich history of motorsports and today’s announcement continues that tradition,” said Jim Adams, chairman of the Henry County Board of Supervisors. “From Martinsville Speedway to the PHCC motorsports program and now to Radical, we continue to set the pace for high performance. Whether it’s racing, engineering, building cars or training the workforce, Henry County truly has it all.”
Evan Feinman, executive director of the Tobacco Commission, said “This is an exciting announcement for Southern Virginia and shows that the region is a perfect choice for advanced technology and manufacturing companies looking for a new home or to expand. The Tobacco Commission has worked together with our community colleges to grow opportunities in the region and bringing Radical Sportscars to Martinsville-Henry County is a perfect match for Patrick Henry Community College’s MET complex and Racing College of Virginia. We wish them the best as they join our Southern Virginia business community.”
The college is currently working to renovate the MET II building where Radical Sportscars will be locating its new office. When the renovations are complete, the building will house PHCC’s welding program, precision machining program, and more. The MET I building was the first building in the Complex to be renovated and it houses the college’s Motorsports, engineering, and mechatronics programs.
“This partnership really just makes sense –for everyone involved— but I especially see this as beneficial for our students,” said PHCC’s College President Dr. Angeline Godwin. “In the past, our Racing College faculty have worked exceptionally hard to ensure their students have opportunities to meet employers and make connections with people in the industry. I cannot express how valuable it will be for our students and our program to have one of these partners located just across the parking lot.”