Advanced manufacturing: How the UK’s Most Productive Transport Equipment Manufacturing Cluster Adds Value for Its Businesses

June 3, 2015 9:17 am
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Sticking together: world-class manufacturing businesses

The counties of Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire are home to the UK’s most productive transport equipment manufacturing cluster [5], which includes global ‘OEMs’ and hundreds of supply chain businesses. But what are the real benefits for aerospace, automotive and rail-sector businesses establishing operations in the area?

Here are just a few of them:

1. Proximity to Major ‘OEM’ Transport Equipment Manufacturers

The Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire area is home to some of the UK’s largest and most important transport equipment manufacturing facilities. OEM operations in the area include Rolls-Royce (Derby), Toyota (Burnaston), JCB (Foston) and Bombardier (Derby), making it a potentially ideal location for businesses in, or seeking to join, their supply chains.

2. Market Growth Opportunities

Significant market growth is projected for each of the ‘planes, trains and automobiles’ sectors, presenting major expansion opportunities for businesses within the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire cluster. Here’s why:

Aerospace: The global passenger aircraft fleet is projected to double in size in the next 16 years. With the UK being the ‘world number 2’ aerospace manufacturing country, businesses in the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire supply chain are set to be major beneficiaries. [1]

Automotive: The ‘reshoring’ phenomenon means that 70% of car manufacturers or supply chain businesses are planning to return production to the UK in the next two years [2]. With 40% of UK car production taking pace in the Midlands [3], businesses within the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire cluster will be ideally positioned to benefit.

Rail: The Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire area is at the heart of Europe’s densest cluster of rail engineering companies. [3] According to UKTI, Britain’s railways are ‘the fastest growing in Europe by passenger kilometres travelled’ [4], creating significant growth opportunities for businesses within the cluster.

3. Access to World Class Knowledge and Technologies…

So, the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire area is home to major transport equipment OEMs in growing market segments, creating big opportunities for potential suppliers. But how can businesses wanting to expand in these markets prepare themselves to deliver the high-quality, low-cost products that the OEMs demand?

The answer is to implement the latest technological innovations and process improvements.

And the good news is that a wealth of advanced manufacturing and supply chain expertise is easily accessible to businesses locating in the area. All of the following research, technology and supply chain development assets are located within 1 hour 15 minutes of Ashfield and Mansfield [7], at the heart of the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire cluster:

High Value Manufacturing (HVM) Catapult Centres:

The UK’s 7 HVM Catapult Centres [6] are at the heart of the UK’s advanced manufacturing growth strategy, facilitating the deployment of new technologies and process into businesses to deliver competitive edge. No fewer than 3 of the centres are close at hand, including the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC, Sheffield) and the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC, Coventry). Both of these centres develop advanced technologies and processes focused on the needs of businesses in the transport equipment manufacturing sector.

Leading Engineering Universities:

Two of the UK’s top 10-ranked engineering universities can be accessed in less than one hour: the University of Nottingham and the University of Sheffield. [8]

The Institute for Innovation in Sustainable Engineering (IISE, University of Derby):

The IISE has been established to support advanced manufacturing companies in the region through innovation and collaborative working. With the support of partners including Rolls-Royce, Bombardier and Toyota, the institute provides access to cutting-edge technologies, and enables businesses to develop products and processes for increased competitiveness. [5] [10]

ENSCITE (Derby):

A collaboration between Derby, Aston and Cranfield universities, ENSCITE is a new organisation created to promote collaboration between businesses in the aerospace, automotive and rail supply chains, and to improve business performance in 3 key areas: technology innovations, systems improvement and business/process re-engineering. Support from the university partners takes various forms including business improvement programmes, supply chain workshops and, potentially, funding support for new technology investments. [5] [10]

4. And that’s not all…

The benefits to businesses of locating in Ashfield and Mansfield, at the heart of the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire transport equipment manufacturing cluster, go further still. The concentration of businesses with similar specialisations and needs has created a large, skilled engineering workforce, and a supporting infrastructure of training organisations and professional services providers who understand the needs of manufacturers.

We could go on. But instead, if you’d like to find out more, we’d be delighted if you gave us a call.

Find Out More Contact Invest Ashfield and Mansfield to find out more about growing your manufacturing business in Ashfield and Mansfield, Nottinghamshire.

[1] Reach for the Skies, the Aerospace Growth Partnership, 2012
[2] Lloyds Bank, 2014
[3] URS/Derby CC, 2009
[4] UK Trade and Investment (UKTI)
[5] D2N2 LEP
[7] Google Maps
[8] The Complete University Guide, University League Table, 2014

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