To help you all over the January Blues here is Friday Brief for the 16th January.
This week we’re launching 2015’s TDI Challenge. Open to 14-19 year olds, it is a great way to raise awareness of subjects that help young people into engineering careers. If you have any links with schools or colleges, do get them involved!
There are only a few weeks left to get your entry into the Manufacturing Industry Awards – the deadline is 30th January so don’t delay.
For our Members in the North of England, we have information on a £20m fund ready for investment in exciting SMEs. Seneca Partners has funds available for immediate investment this year and is ready to invest between £1m and £3m into the right opportunity.
In our event round up this week we have more information on UKTI’s GREAT CEE Mega Mission 2015 to Romania and Bulgaria, as well information on the IfM’s annual open evening, Inside IFM, which is taking place on Thursday 29th January 2015. We also have a quick round-up of our own events, including the upcoming UK Surface Engineering Industry – Present and Future seminar at Cranfield University on the 17th February.
We are also pleased to announce that we have another new Member as the Association has been joined by Pryor Marking Technology.
We’ve got quite a bit of economic news this week, with a mixture of messages. The UK manufacturing sector overall seems to have rebounded from the weak October, although there is, as the saying goes, good and bad news in the detailed figures; Automotive and Aerospace output continue to grow, but there is some weakness suggested in the data for both the Machinery and Metal Products industries. In Europe, industrial output is continuing its trend of gradual improvement from the low point in August and there are more countries where output is up than who are reporting a decline compared to a year ago. Although it is perhaps a concern that France, Italy, Sweden, Netherlands and Germany (only just) are all in the “down” camp. Meanwhile, US orders for manufacturing technology equipment are running at a little above the 2013 levels and sales of cutting tools are broadly similar to last year - both trends reflect a good position, although there is always room for improvement.