Daily Manufacturing News Digest – the industry stories you should be aware of today

Posted on 24 Nov 2023 by The Manufacturer

Each day The Manufacturer compiles the top manufacturing news stories from around the web. To make your life a little easier, we trawl through all the major trade publications, broadsheets and business magazines to find you the most important manufacturing news each morning. Don't forget to bookmark this page and check back daily.

UK Export Finance unveils extra support for SME exporters

UK Export Finance (UKEF) announced yesterday at its annual conference that it is introducing more flexible, fast-track financing for small businesses – making it easier than ever for UK firms to sell in international markets.

The export credit agency has expanded its ‘auto-inclusion’ scheme which provides fast-track access to trade finance products like the General Export Facility. This means that small businesses can now access more government-backed credit more quickly without manual intervention from UKEF.

The maximum support which UKEF can offer under auto-inclusion has doubled from £5m to £10m, meaning that UK exporters can access more support with a simple request through a participating bank. More via The Manufacturer

Stellantis buys back shares worth $1bn from Chinese JV partner Dongfeng

Chrysler-parent Stellantis said on Wednesday it has repurchased 50 million common shares from Dongfeng Motor (Hong Kong) International (0489.HK) for about 934 million euros ($1.02bn).

Stellantis, which has a joint venture with Dongfeng Motor in China, said it plans to cancel these shares and the transaction with Dongfeng would not impact its 1.5 billion euros open-market repurchase programme. More via Reuters

CPI set to open new centre for cutting-edge medicines manufacturing in Scotland

CPI is set to create a new centre of excellence for manufacturing cutting-edge medicines after a multi-million-pound fund was announced in the Autumn Statement.

The Oligonucleotide Manufacturing Innovation Centre of Excellence will focus on developing innovative and sustainable manufacturing techniques in an emerging area of medicine known as oligonucleotides. More via CPI

Improved rural internet connectivity to unlock £8.8bn for British manufacturers

New research from Cebr for Virgin Media O2 finds that improved rural connectivity could increase turnover for rural manufacturing businesses by over 7%, adding an extra £8.8bn to the UK economy.

The analysis, published for the first time, examines the role improved connectivity could play in supporting economic growth and transforming rural industries.

Many factories are located away from cities and urban areas, with nearly half of manufacturing jobs located in rural areas. Recent output data shows the sector has been struggling due to the UK’s persistent productivity challenge, with the majority of manufacturers saying they expect economic conditions in the UK to either significantly or moderately deteriorate. More via The Manufacturer

Britvic PLC releases preliminary results for year ended 30 September 2023

Britvic PLC has released its preliminary results for the year ended 30 September 2023.

The release shows that while revenue increased 6.6% to £1.7bn (statutory increased 8.1%), profit after tax decreased 11.6% to £124m, mainly driven by the impact of adjusting items. More via Britvic

Aurrigo International plc returns to Milton Keynes with self-driving shuttle trial

One of the UK’s leading autonomous technology specialists is returning to Milton Keynes, nine years after it first deployed its 4-seater driverless pods in the city.

Aurrigo International plc, which employs nearly 100 people at its advanced engineering centre in Coventry, will be trialling its Auto-Shuttle vehicle on a city centre loop connecting Santander’s new UK HQ at Unity Place with centre:mk, the Theatre District and Station Square.

Running throughout November, the testing is part of the LivingLAPT project that is funded by EIT Urban Mobility and led by University College London (UCL). More via The Manufacturer

UKRI welcomes Chancellor’s Autumn Statement

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has welcomed the government’s renewed commitment to research and innovation.

This follows the Chancellor’s announcement of a series of investments in science and technology through his Autumn Statement.

UKRI said the investments reflect the long-term goals of the government’s Science and Technology Framework, announced earlier in the year, which leverages UKRI’s role as an integrated funding body and a unique source of scientific and operational delivery expertise across the whole research, development and innovation (RDI) landscape. More via UK Research and Innovation

Smart Architectural Aluminium and Centrica agree major solar power purchase agreement

Smart Architectural Aluminium, the UK’s leading architectural aluminium manufacturer, is set for a more sustainable future after Centrica Business Solutions agreed a long-term lease for a solar array on the roof of its UK headquarters.

Centrica Business Solutions has started construction on the 7,000 solar panel array, across the roofs of three buildings at the manufacturing site in Yatton, near Bristol.

The 2.94MW installation is the result of a long -term lease agreement between Smart and Centrica Business Solutions, which will see Centrica lease the roof space, finance the project and agree a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Smart for the green electricity produced on site. More via Centrica