Welcome to the Friday Brief for 27 June 2014.
The Global Manufacturing Festival took place in Sheffield this week with many members attending. The MTA partnered with the University of Sheffield AMRC to put on the Advances in Machining event on 24 June. An audience of nearly 200 heard leading speakers from the manufacturing technologies sector and were able to discuss the latest advances with companies exhibiting at the event. The Festival attracted senior figures from across manufacturing, a networking highlight being the dinner at Ponds Forge in the centre of Sheffield. The Business Secretary Dr Vince Cable MP also spoke at the Festival. He used the occasion to announce the formation of new national colleges, one of which is expected to be focused on advanced manufacturing.
This week the Technology Strategy Board launched competitions totalling £6 million for collaborative R&D funding and feasibility studies finance. The programmes are designed to encourage the development of new proof of concepts or production processes. Partnerships of two or more companies can apply for the collaborative R&D funding scheme while individual companies or groupings can put bids in for the feasibility studies programme.
An announcement of other funding opportunities this week came from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) with the launch of Round 6 of the Regional Growth Fund (RGF). In Round 6 is worth up to £200 million in total and the support is being made available to private organisations. We have more details in the Brief.
The long awaited report by The Labour Party into issues holding back advanced manufacturing in the UK has just been released. The report has been headed by Mike Wright, Jaguar Land Rover’s Executive Director, and we have first news of the contents in this week’s Friday Brief.
This week also saw the publication of the Business Finance Guide, published jointly by the British Business Bank and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales. The guide claims to be relevant to all sorts of businesses although it will be particularly appropriate to start-ups.
We have a reminder in this week’s Friday Brief about the Inter-Association Golf Day on 16 July. An event not to be missed with trophies at stake !
Have a good weekend.