NatWest launches manufacturing hub following Future Fit report

Posted on 22 Apr 2016 by Jonny Williamson

NatWest has opened a new manufacturing hub for businesses in Wolverhampton, with the aim of creating an ecosystem where companies from across the Midlands can support each other and grow.

The launch of the hub comes after a recent NatWest white paper – Future Fit: the road ahead for UK manufacturing revealed medium-sized UK manufacturers will need more cohesive support to remain competitive.

Richard Hill, head of Manufacturing & Automotive, NatWest.
Richard Hill, head of Manufacturing & Automotive, NatWest.
[email protected]

Head of Manufacturing & Automotive at NatWest, Richard Hill commented: “Our research clearly indicates that for the UK’s medium-sized manufacturing segment to be ready for the changes the sector will face in the next five to ten years, they’ll need a more cohesive support structure and more networking and mentorship initiatives.

“The research showed businesses can feel disconnected or even isolated from the wider supply chain and industry, and this hub aims to create an ecosystem where manufacturers and industry stakeholders from across the region can connect, network and support each other.

“We are committed to helping this sector grow, so it is important we continue finding ways to offer more extensive and tailored support.”

The hub, at Broadlands on the Wolverhampton Business Park, was opened by NatWest’s Head of Corporate & Commercial Coverage, Andy Gray. The launch event brought together a number of local manufacturers and others in the community including the Black Country Chamber of Commerce and Dudley College.

Gray said: “We want to help facilitate solutions and opportunities through this hub by making it a place for networking, sharing of information and best practice, as well as somewhere the sector’s issues and challenges can be discussed and debated.

To download the Future Fit report, click here

“Our hub is a great way to get the local manufacturing community together. Not only can they use this platform to learn from each other, but we also get to hear directly from them what they need to grow and succeed. That information helps us make sure we’re offering the most relevant support to help them achieve their ambitions.”

Grainger& Worrall is a third-generation prototype and small series castings business who supply the automotive, motorsport, aerospace and defence sectors.

Its CEO, Matthew Grainger who contributed to the Future Fit report and attended the event added: “As medium-sized businesses we often get tied up in the day-to-day world with the phones going all the time.

“It’s extremely valuable to have the chance to stop that for a while, get in a room with your peers and have those strategic discussions that keep you moving forward.”