Hitachi's £7million state-of-the-art office campus on the White Horse Business Park, Trowbridge, has been officially opened.
Kazuya Miura, president of Hitachi Capital, travelled from Japan for the opening of Hakuba House, which is the new Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions building and translates directly from the Japanese for white horse.
After Mr Miura unveiled a plaque to commemorate the building, customers, suppliers and Hitachi Capital colleagues were treated to a performance from traditional Japanese Taiko drummers.
Hakuba House, which is the first building Hitachi Capital owns the freehold for anywhere in the world, is a office campus and specialist vehicle preparation centre and has been in operation since May, after construction work finished less than a year after it started.
Mr Miura, who is also chief executive officer of Hitachi Capital Corporation, said: “It is an honour to be opening Hakuba House.
“It is 40 years since our first oversees office was opened in Hong Kong and the investment that we’re making through Hitachi Capital UK demonstrates our expectations of growth in the UK market.
“Everyone involved in the project should be proud of this milestone in Hitachi Capital’s history.”
The previous premises situated at Canal Road in Trowbridge housed the business for 13 years and were originally designed for just 30 staff, managing 717 vehicles.
Having outgrown the old building, with Hitachi Capital now employing more than 140 people managing a fleet of almost 30,000 vehicles, the company decided to keep operations in Trowbridge by moving to Hakuba House.
Jon Lawes, managing director of Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions, said: “I’m very proud to have been involved in this project over the last three years and the feedback from all the staff has been phenomenal.
“The vast size of our new Hitachi Capital campus here in Trowbridge will ensure we continue to meet the needs of our growing customer base while being able to remain in the building for many years to come.
“Since we began the three-year process, we have been determined to keep the business local in order to retain our staff – all of whom have helped make the moving process as fluid as possible.”
Commercial vehicles from customers and partners, such as Hitachi Construction Machinery, the RAC, National Grid and the latest in electric vehicles from the British Gas fleet were on display outside the new building.
Designed by Bath-based architecture and planning firm Nash Partnership and built by Midas Construction, Hakuba House’s modern style has achieved BREEAM ‘Very Good’ standard.
Over a fifth - 22 per cent - of the energy requirement for the campus will be sourced from on-site energy renewable technology, exceeding the UK target of 15 per cent energy from renewable sources by 2020.