The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has awarded Sharing in Growth a £6m contract to continue helping UK manufacturing and engineering companies compete more successfully in the global aerospace market.
Established in 2013, the award-winning Sharing in Growth (SiG) programme has supported more than 60 companies with some 10,000 employees and, with the increased funding matched by private investment, can now offer 36-month programme places valued at over £300,000 a year to each beneficiary company.
The programme has already helped companies secure more than £4bn in contracts and the additional funding aims to net a further £400m.
SiG offers ambitious aerospace suppliers the opportunity to make sustainable improvements to their leadership, culture and operational capability.
The programme’s 100 business coaches, backed by a bank of world-leading experts, help companies tackle their individually diagnosed barriers to growth and, for many, double their turnover.
An independent, not-for-profit programme, Sharing in Growth is supported by the Regional Growth Fund and by more than £150m in private investment.
Sharing in Growth CEO, Andy Page commented: “The increased government funding means we can maintain our impetus, typically, helping companies to address a 20% cost gap and a 50% productivity improvement.”
He continued: “Contributing to the UK’s exporting strength and the government’s Industrial Strategy, the programme complements other key government-supported initiatives such as the Aerospace Technology Institute and the High Value Manufacturing Catapults, so they win a greater share of the burgeoning global aerospace market.”
Family-owned precision engineering firm JJ Churchill of Leicestershire was one of the first aerospace suppliers selected for Sharing in Growth in 2013 when its ambitions were to overcome risks caused by the oil crisis by expanding its aerospace export business.
After six years with SiG, the company has secured more than £300m in contracts, increased its headcount by 35% and its export forward order book from under £1m to more than £37m.
Consequently, the company has been able to make a £10m investment in plant and equipment. Its plans are now to hit more than £38m in annual turnover, up from around £15m in 2016, and to add around 20 new jobs by 2020.
Executive chairman Andrew Churchill, said: “Working with Sharing in Growth, we have invested in our people, our efficiency and our technology so that we can delight customers by delivering quality products in full, on time and with world-beating competitiveness. As a result, we signed one of our biggest ever long-term agreements worth around £70m to supply precision machined blades to Rolls-Royce. I don’t think it gets any better than that.”
Walker Precision Engineering
Working with Sharing in Growth has enabled Glasgow-based Walker Precision Engineering to move up the value chain from a relatively small family firm to a strategic international aerospace and defence supply partner employing more than 300 highly skilled staff in three state-of-the-art manufacturing hubs and rapidly gaining recognition as a space industry centre of excellence.
Having made wide-ranging improvements to its culture, training, organisation and processes, Walker has invested more than £7m in its plant and latest technology and secured almost £70m in contracts and is on track to increase its turnover from £15m in 2015 to more than £25m by 2020.
Managing director, Mark Walker said: “The programme gave us the capability and confidence to embed a high-performance culture across the group, to deliver excellence for our customers and to invest in our future.”
Sharing in Growth
Endorsed by Airbus, BAE Systems, Boeing, Bombardier, GE, GKN, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, MBDA, Rolls-Royce, Safran and Thales, the SiG programme supports the government and industry-backed Aerospace Growth Partnership and its supply chain charter.
In 2018, Sharing in Growth won the national Semta Innovation Award for improving the capability and productivity of more than 10,000 people working in the UK aerospace supply chain.
To qualify for the programme, companies need to be aerospace suppliers, have genuine ambition to grow and be able to release their teams for on-site coaching, training and mentoring.
Each participating company has an agreed training plan tailored to their individual needs. The training is publicly funded while the company’s contribution equates to individuals’ time spent in development or training.