Digital Manufacturing Week returns to Liverpool 8-12 November, 2021

Digital Manufacturing Week returns for an in-person event at its home in the North West of England from 8 – 12 November. 

Digital Manufacturing Week is an annual, national festival of advanced manufacturing. Researched, produced and curated by The Manufacturer, the events attract thousands of manufacturers, industry leaders, and technology providers every year. 

After delivering the events in virtual a format last year, they will return to Liverpool in physical form, allowing attendees first-hand experience of some the best-in-class industry speakers, influencers and technologies.  

Digital Manufacturing Week features:  

  • Expert speakers  
  • World class solution providers 
  • Industry-shaping influencers  
  • Delegates from the best manufacturers  
  • And the brightest emerging talent 

Smart Factory Expo 2019
Smart Factory Expo 2019: The last time this event took place in physical form

The Manufacturer brings them together to help businesses at all stages of their Industry 4.0 development, arming them with real insights from the industry we have been at the heart of for almost 30 years. 

Digital Manufacturing Week is about learning, providing a showcase for the best of manufacturing and celebrating successes. 

The week will provide manufacturing executives with the knowledge, contacts and solutions they need to navigate the sector’s biggest challenges – with specific attention to issues such as sustainability, and how Industry 4.0 can be a driver of that.  

It will enable manufacturers to identify opportunities within digital transformation for a step-change in business performance. By rethinking processes, products and business models to increase competitive advantage, innovation could follow.  

Manufacturer’s of all sizes can learn more about automation; to connect their people, factories and products, and build manufacturing processes that scale. These are just some of the many themes that will be discussed during the week.  

What’s happening and when? 

 Smart Factory Expo: 10 – 11 November: Industry’s largest digital manufacturing exhibition – and a showcase for the revolution in technology, process and thinking behind Industry 4.0.

Manufacturing Leaders’ Summit: 10 – 11 November: The C-Suite conference that enables you to redefine your business models with world-class, case-study driven content delivered by best-in-class manufacturing speakers.

SME Growth Summit, incorporating MTC’s Digitalising Manufacturing Conference: 9 – 11 November: Designed for the leadership teams of SME manufacturers

The Manufacturer Top 100 2021 Ceremony: 10 November: Recognising inspirational industry role models

The Manufacturer MX Awards 2021 Ceremony & Gala Dinner: 11 November: Celebrating the very best of UK manufacturing excellence

…  and dozens more fringe events!

What’s new this year? 

An exciting new addition to this year’s festival is the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) Digitalising Manufacturing Conference. Previously this has been run in October, but this year, in partnership with The Manufacturer, the event will be held virtually on 9 November, and for the first time, it will be hosted as a hybrid event at the ACC in Liverpool on 10 and 11 November, to coincide with Digital Manufacturing Week.


Smart Factory Expo 2019
Manufacturing Leaders’ Summit 2019

The conference will be incorporated into the SME Growth Summit, which is a brand new event from The Manufacturer, tailored to manufacturing founders, owners and their executive teams. The summit is produced to equip them with the ideas, connections and examples they need to scale up their business. 

The people, processes and financing that gets start-ups off the ground – are not the same as those that take promising SMEs to the next level. Manufacturing SME leaders succeed by encountering new and better ways of working – knowing when to bootstrap their growth, and when to invest into demand. 

In person events 

In March 2021, previous attendees of Smart Factory Expo were surveyed to refine our existing understanding of the solutions they most want to see showcased. This was also done to gain deeper insights into visitor intentions for in-person events in the latter part of 2021 and beyond. 

It revealed a clear appetite for physical events, with 82% of our audience saying they are comfortable and intended to join us in person, at events this year.  

The survey also revealed that 85% of manufacturers have current investment plans, supporting the findings of The Manufacturer and IBM’s Digital Transformation Assessment released in February, that 67% of manufacturers have accelerated digital projects as a result of COVID-19.  

Respondents stated that researching solutions, seeing live demonstrations and face-to-face networking were the primary reasons that 82% want to return to in person events in 2021. 

Whilst digital events have done an excellent job at providing a virtual option for these interactions in 2020, this has not been without limitations. There is a strong desire to for people to “do business” face-to-face, and the serendipity of seeing technologies or meeting individuals that you are not searching for is very hard to replicate in a virtual environment. 

Grace Gilling, Managing Director, Hennik Research (publishers of The Manufacturer and organisers of Digital Manufacturing Week) said: “It is clear from our research and conversations with our audience that there is a pent-up demand for in-person events to enable manufacturers to research and source their digital solutions and technology investments efficiently. We’re looking forward to returning to Liverpool and industry getting back together face to face in a safe environment.” 


The Manufacturer MX Awards 2019 - Manufacturer of the Year Runner up - Domino Printing Sciences

The Manufacturer MX Awards 2019 – Domino Printing Sciences


Come along! 

So, the increased pace of digital projects, coupled with manufacturer’s want to get out to events, and source solutions to drive their business forward, makes Digital Manufacturing Week a truly exciting event in the manufacturing diary.  

Registration for this years event is now open! Select your ticket here! 

Exhibition and conference tickets are for manufacturers only at this year’s event. This is in part to maintain social distancing practices with regulated footfall. If you are interested in sponsoring or exhibiting, please contact [email protected] for more information.