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In this issue...

Innovation – the centre of corporate strategiese
Lord Sainsbury, UK Minister for Science and Innovation
British Innovations
On the road again
Christopher Macgowan, Chief Executive, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders
Fossil Fuels – An Energy source for the Future
Greg Lewin, President, Shell Global Solutions
Chain of success
Kenny McKay, Director, and Will Wright, Manager, Restructuring practice at KPMG
Innovation and the Patent Office
Lawrence Smith-Higgins, Head of Awareness Information & Media The UK Patent Office
Benefits of association
Dr Michael Moore, CEO, PIramed Ltd
Innovation and strength in the UK biotech sector
Aisling Burnand, Chief Executive, BioIndustry Association
Simfonec: Helping make good research BIG business
Heron Evidence Development: Successful deal of missed opportunity
Springwell Ltd: Match-maker for Innovative Technologies
Korn/Ferry International: Pharmaceutical companies desire to break the mould
A quality core interface
Dominique Kleyn head of BioPharma Business Development, Imperial College London
Evolutec Group: Creating a range of commercial options
Moving forward
Dr Ceri Williams, Senior Manager, Science and Innovation at Yorkshire Forward and Dr Danielle Hankin, Bioscience Cluster Manager
Oxitech: Revolutionising SIT Programmes
Oxford Expression Technologies: Meeting the needs of the post-genomic era
Business Services
Innovating business related services
Norma Rose, Director-General, Business Services Association
BT: Innovation Strategy and Innovation Continuum
UK Film Council: How the UK wins in the international film industry?
On the defence
Major General Alan Sharman CBE, Director General, Defence Manufacturers Association
ProEtch: Precision parts of quality
Wallop Defence Systems: Aircraft Countermeasures and the Dual Spectral Threat
Education, Education, Education
Ruth Kelly, Secretary of State for Education and Skills
Applied Sciences at Wolverhampton - Innovation in Higher Education Professor Trevor Hocking, Associate Dean, International Development
Wind energy
Marus Rand, Chief Executive, British Wind Energy Association
Vital energy
Ian Leitch, Commercial Director, Energy Industries Council
Waterman Group: Solutions to solve climate control legislation
Winning the war against germs
Dr Ron Mitchell, Managing Director, GB Environmental
Show me the money! Funding for innovation – who can help?
UK: Innovation Nation?
Launching the “Innovation Nation?” initiative
Innovation in the 21st Century
Gemma Harman, Director of Strategy & Media, BT Chief Technology Office
UK Manufacturing - a driving force for innovation
Andrew Manly, Director General, Manufacturing Technologies Association
Waterman Group: Single project model 3D
Renishaw: Achieving global manufacturing competitiveness in the UK
Yorkshire Forward
The European Nanotechnology Trade Alliance
Del Stark, Chief Executive, European Nanotechnology Trade Alliance
University research drives a new wave of innovation
Omar Cheema, Nanotechnology Business Development, Imperial College London
Oxford Instruments: Enabling nanoscience and nanotechnology
Semefab (Scotland): A real driver of change
Metal Nanopowders: New products that meet your needs
Regional Development
London Development Agency: One jump ahead
91Advantage West Midlands: At the heart of it all 95


On the road again

Christopher Macgowan

The UK remains the number one location in Europe for automotive investment and continues to be at the forefront of advanced vehicle design and technologies. Our strength as a production base means there are more car makers here than anywhere else in Europe and some of the world’s most efficient car plants, backed up by a highly skilled workforce.

Christopher Macgowan, Chief Executive, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Limited

The UK motor industry is a manufacturing and R&D success story. Never before have so many manufacturers been producing such high-quality vehicles in so many different places, and so successfully. The UK boasts more volume vehicle manufacturers than any other EU country.

In addition to those making and supplying the volume car market, Britain has a host of commercial vehicle, niche and sports car manufacturers, as well as a supply chain working hard to improve its productivity in a competitive global market. It?s an industry that supports over 7,000 companies with a workforce that is highly skilled, technologyfocused, producing high value and sustainable products for the future.

World-class car companies

The UK remains a great place to make motor vehicles. More than 1.6m new cars and 200,000 commercial vehicles were manufactured in the UK in 2004 and, despite recent events at MG Rover, there is every hope that this level will be met during the coming 12 months. Motor manufacturers and the supply chain are continuing to invest in the UK. Nissan, for example, has recently announced a fifth model to be manufactured in Sunderland, Honda?s Swindon plant is now the most profitable automotive manufacturing site in the country, and BMW can?t make enough MINIs to meet worldwide consumer demand. Halewood in Merseyside remains one of Ford?s most efficient manufacturing facilities in the world, and Toyota has recently announced a £11.2m training centre to be built at Burnaston, Derbyshire.

The UK boasts more volume vehicle manufacturers than any other EU country

One of the most successful parts of the industry ? but perhaps least well appreciated ? comes in the design, manufacture and testing of engines. This is one element of the industry with one eye firmly on the future. Over three million automotive engines were produced in the UK in 2004, worth over £1.8bn to the UK economy. The UK has also rapidly positioned itself as a global centre for automotive engine design, R&D and manufacture. Many of the world?s leading companies have invested here, using expertise developed by British companies and a dedicated workforce.

World leaders in innovation and new technology

When it comes to new technology, new innovation and its effects, the UK continues to lead the world. New cars are becoming increasingly fuel-efficient and CO2 emissions continue to fall. The average CO2 emission from a new car in 2004 was 172.1g/km, a fall of 9.3% since 1997. An impressive 15% of new cars have levels of below 140g/km, leaving the industry on course to meet our industry emissions targets. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Ltd (SMMT) also has a central role in the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership, helping to formulate a co-ordinated approach to meeting the low carbon future.

Research and development is key to the industry?s success in the future and this is where the SMMT-managed Foresight Vehicle programme plays an important role. The programme helps companies in the UK to benefit from the range of funding to boost research and development. Foresight Vehicle aims to promote technology and stimulate suppliers to develop technologies for future vehicles.

More than 400 companies from all over the UK and throughout the supply chain, as well as some of the country?s most prestigious universities have so far participated in SMMT Foresight Vehicle. The organisation recently published its second Technology Roadmap, pinpointing the best opportunities for future global success by identifying how vehicle markets, products, systems and technologies might evolve over the next 20 years.

Skills improvement at all levels

Addressing the skills shortage is a priority that the industry is driving forward through the Automotive Academy. The Academy is a unique organisation designed to enhance the skills of Britain?s motor-manufacturing industry, its productivity and competitiveness. Supported by the country?s leading automotive companies, the Academy is developing a national approach to training, validating approved courses, providers and assessors.

The Automotive Academy is developing a national approach to promote skills at all levels

The programmes being established by the Academy promote skills improvements at all levels, from shop fl oor right through to the boardroom, encompassing technical, leadership, management and support programmes. In the next 12 months we will see more programmes being rolled out nationally.

The Academy is based in the heart of the UK automotive industry, Birmingham. The central hub will be supported by a network of regional spokes. The Academy now has four active spokes with a further three well into their formation stages. The hub has the responsibility of validating training courses, providers and assessors. The spokes will act as agents for the Academy, providing a ?one-stop shop? to help companies with their training and funding requirements. They will provide a regional focus helping to improve the skills base in the automotive industry in their local area.

A thriving UK market

Despite some negative media coverage relating to UK motor manufacturing, the UK industry is proving itself to be resilient. With interest rates starting to rise, British consumers has been reluctant to invest in large purchases. However, 2004 was a near record year for new car registrations and with some fantastic new models in all segments, and strong competition in the market place, 2005 looks like being another strong year, expected to be just 4% lower than the 2.56 million units in 2004.

Some of the major challenges we face relate to legislation and regulation. In SMMT?s annual issues survey of senior automotive executives, 95% of respondents said that new legislation would significantly increase costs in the next five years, particularly in environment and employment. The automotive sector in the UK is thriving. We have more facilities than any other EU country, making high quality vehicles. Manufacturers have made significant improvements in reducing tailpipe emissions, improving safety and cutting CO2 emissions in all vehicle models and types. It is also making significant progress in reducing emissions, cutting waste and investing in lean products and manufacturing processes, all of which is helping to deliver practical solutions to difficult global problems. This is a real challenge and we, as a UK motor industry, are committed to doing all we can to meet it.


The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Limited (SMMT) The SMMT is the leading trade association for the motor industry. It represents the interests of a sector that is one of the biggest contributors to the economy, supporting more than 850,000 people. The sector is the UK?s biggest manufacturing sector, accounting for a manufacturing turnover approaching £45 billion and 9.3% of total UK output. The SMMT?s role is to represent some 600 companies ranging from vehicle manufacturers, component and material suppliers to power train providers and design engineers.

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