Welcome to the Friday Brief for week-ending 1 November.
Economic news this week was encouraging with the preliminary estimate of UK GDP for the 3rd quarter showing a growth of +0.8% compared to the 2nd quarter; the fastest quarter-on-quarter rate for 3 years. Within overall GDP, all the major sectors of the economy are estimated to have seen quarter-on-quarter growth with, most importantly for the manufacturing technologies sector, manufacturing expanding at +0.9%, the same rate of growth as in the 2nd quarter of the year.
Another Friday Brief story highlights the improvement in confidence reported from the European engineering industries.
The MTA’s 2014 Manufacturing Industry Awards represents an outstanding opportunity to showcase your company’s achievements and/or the potential of one of your young engineers. The Awards will be presented during the MTA Annual Dinner at the ICC Birmingham. Ticket sales for the dinner are very strong so shortlisted entrants will be assured valuable publicity in front of a large audience drawn from across UK manufacturing. Businesses are alerted to the deadline of 29 November for submitting entries and a link to the entry details is included in this week’s Friday Brief story. Categories include: Best Supplier Partnership, Best Training Scheme and Young Engineer of the Year. Applications for the AMTRI scholarship are also welcomed.
We also have news this week of an important new study of the challenges small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) face in obtaining bank finance. The report, entitled Bank Finance Lost in Translation, builds on a 2012 study commissioned by Kingston Smith LLP from the University of Surrey into SME success factors. Amongst the key findings from the latest Report are that SMEs are often unaware of banks’ lending criteria! The report contains useful guidance and is linked to this week’s Friday Brief story.
A final note for your diaries: the 4th of December will see the MTA AGM at Gaydon Heritage Motor Centre. We’re delighted that this year we will be joined by Professor Sir Mike Gregory, Director of the Institute for Manufacturing at Cambridge University, who will share his thoughts on the challenges manufacturing faces in the 21st Century. See this week’s story for registration details.
Have a good weekend.