GLOBAL BUSINESS ACCELERATOR
Innovate UK’s Global Business Accelerator Programme, delivered by the Enterprise Europe Network, is organising a funded visit to Canada specifically targeted at businesses in the advanced manufacturing sector.
This visit and accompanying programme of support will allow innovative companies to identify opportunities and solutions in the advanced manufacturing sector. The visit will bring together capabilities, ideas and funding options to enable the formation of agile and motivated partnerships to address current and future challenges in the advanced manufacturing sector.
Based on the interests and capabilities of UK businesses, like-minded Canadian businesses will be identified and invited for one-to-one meetings.
The Eurostars programme will be introduced to all participants and explored as an ideal framework for technical and commercial collaboration on an international scale.
The visit will make connections between Canadian and UK SMEs in the creation, delivery and adoption of advanced manufacturing solutions.
Recently, UK and Canadian governments have committed to stimulate further business and innovation cooperation between the two countries. Meanwhile, analysis from Innovate UK and consultation with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) highlight clear opportunities for closer cooperation in the advanced manufacturing sector.
Canada offers the following benefits to UK businesses in the advanced manufacturing sector:
- A strong economic growth record: Canada led all G7 countries in economic growth over the past decade (2006–2015). (Source: OECD)
- Canada offers a dynamic and innovative manufacturing sector. In 2016 it was responsible for 32% ($6.6 billion) of all business enterprise R&D investments (Source: Government of Canada)
- Manufacturing accounts for approximately $174 billion of Canadian GDP and employs over 1.7 million people (Government of Canada)
- Implementation of the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) opens up opportunities for UK companies as well as removing barriers to trade and provides assured preferential access into USA and Mexico
- Canada has a strong business and consumer base; and offers proximity and easier access to the US market
- Canada has similar legal and business practices to the UK
FOCUS OF VISIT
The visit addresses opportunities and challenges in the advanced manufacturing sector.
A scoping mission to Canada in December 2017 highlighted the following findings where novel approaches are most welcome:
- Additive Metal manufactured parts generally require extensive machining and other finishing steps before they are ready for use
- Complex, high-precision parts, e.g. turbine blades, can be very difficult to inspect in situ and even harder to affect repairs to the required standards
- Process standards and certification provide assurance for parts manufactured by conventional means, but are rarely applicable to additively produced parts
- Traceability and provenance tracking in non-item (e.g. Bulk material) parts through mixing, blending and processing are poorly supported by current tools, e.g. additive powders, food products and liquids
- Robustness and adaptability in material supply chains and production flows, especially in Lean supply chains, are vulnerable to disruption and unplanned events
- Robots and humans are generally separated to protect the safety of staff, limiting the value that could be realised from effective and safe ‘Co-bot’ operations
- Automated and robotic systems have proven their value is repetitive tasks with consistent materials, the challenges of flexible and adaptable systems still remains
The visit and Global Business Accelerator Programme will introduce Eurostars as a funding option to support UK-Canadian projects:
- The UK government has invested over £5 million to support UK SMEs in Eurostars international collaborative projects this year
- Eurostars is aimed at supporting both development and commercialisation of new innovative products, services and processes
- Eurostars helps technology-orientated SMEs to realise the many benefits of working beyond national borders
- Participation in a Eurostars project can therefore open new global markets
- Canada joined the Eurostars-2 programme as a partner country in March 2016 and has already financed successful projects