Satra has appointed an executive director to cover its quality assurance operation and services. He is Austin Simmons who is also head of the UK technology centre’s safety product centre. He joins the Satra board and now takes a key role in strategic forward planning for the centre as it sets out its plans for the next six years, up to 2010.

Simmons, who has extensive experience in consumer product testing, joined Satra in 1996 and was one of the first members of staff to move to the Wyndham Way site laboratories when they were opened in 1997.

He will continue as business manager for Satra Quality Assurance Ltd and retain overall responsibility for all aspects of safety testing of apparel, footwear and equipment. The operation also covers the management of quality services, chemical analytical laboratory and Satra’s global test method services.

The appointment coincides with the opening of Satra’s new £1.5 million extension on its second site. This has enabled its personal protection equipment test facility to double in size and meet demand.

Satra is also increasing its involvement with consumer product resourcing companies and their global supply chains — an initiative reinforced with a new role for the UK technology centre’s Phil Shaw. The former head of Satra’s management services business area, Shaw will now help develop Satra’s understanding of the supply chains and the services for these companies.

He has been involved in developing and supplying Satra’s management systems and training programmes for more than twenty years and is now responsible for visiting international resourcing companies to ensure than Satra’s products and services are kept relevant.