North East England has the support networks in place for new investors to thrive.
The North East Automotive Alliance (NEAA) is an industry-led and membership-based network to overcome barriers to growth and support manufacturing businesses. It undertakes a range of activities providing access to research and intelligence, benchmarking and skills practice. It provides a focal point to drive innovation and adopt new technologies and processes through collaboration, business advice and access to funding.
More recently the NEAA established the NEAA Electrification Group to promote and develop the region’s manufacturing and research activity in electrified powertrain components and systems, including batteries.
Local authorities, business organisations, centres of excellence and regionally located R&D funds supply a huge amount of support specifically geared towards nurturing existing supply chains and providing opportunities for new entrants.
Advanced Manufacturing Forum (AMF) is the largest manufacturing forum in the North East, dedicated to supporting organisations from a range of manufacturing sectors.
The region prides itself on collaboration and business networks leading the way in innovation and R&D. For example, Newcastle University is a member of the UK Rail Research and Innovation Network and is one of three UK universities involved in the national Rolling Stock Innovation Centre.
Cross-company collaboration in the region has always been at the forefront of what makes the North East an ideal investment location. Recent announcements include the Hitachi Rail EU and Hyperdrive Innovation collaboration to develop battery packs to power zero-emission trains. The two companies will boost the manufacture of batteries capable of being mass-produced, which will offer emission-free power for battery trains in the UK.