The British American Business Group (BABG)’s annual Oglethorpe Sword Award was presented March 25 to Anthony Bamford, chairman of the Staffordshire, U.K.-based JCB Group of Companies.

Sir Anthony is celebrating his 25th year as chairman of the group and is responsible for the decision to build a $62 million manufacturing plant to produce JCB earth-moving equipment in Savannah.

The award is presented to the individual judged to have contributed most to Anglo-Georgian trade and investment during the preceding year.  The ceremony was held at the Grand Hyatt – Buckhead and awarded by Peter Marshall, the British consul general based in Atlanta.

The JCB group employs more than 4,000 people worldwide. Its North American headquarters is to move this month from Baltimore to the new site in Savannah where more than 100 people will be employed.

According to a statement from the British Consulate-General, work on the plant is almost complete and production of machines already has begun with the company’s first employees turning out two machines a day.

As the factory reaches its full manufacturing capacity up to 500 manufacturing jobs are expected to be created, with an additional 1,000 sales and marketing personnel.

The company has won more than 50 major awards for engineering excellence, exports, design marketing, management and for its care of the environment.

For more information, call Gillian Cooper at (404) 527-5766 or send an e-mail to