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A number of sectors within the UK’s advanced engineering and high value manufacturing community converged in record numbers at NEC Birmingham on the 7 – 8 November 2012, as part of the Advanced Engineering UK 2012 group of events.
Boasting a total attendance of more than 9,000, a solid 35% increase over 2011, this year’s group of events encompassed four key interlinked advanced engineering and high value manufacturing shows – Aero Engineering 2012, the Composites Engineering Show 2012, the UK Plastic Electronics show and, new for 2012, the inaugural UK Automotive Engineering show.
Ian Stone, Managing Director of show organisers UK Tech Events, commented “We’ve been delighted to see such a comprehensive turnout at this year’s group of events, reflecting the relentless prioritisation from industry, from government and from academia in each of these pivotal high value, high skilled economic sectors. They represent the key pillars for a rebalanced UK economy, with sustainable growth in critical targeted ‘high value’ engineering and technology sectors where the UK is increasingly taking an international lead, reflecting its unique and comprehensive value chain capability and competitiveness.”
The 550+ exhibitors in Hall 1 at NEC Birmingham for this year’s show meant 100 more stands than last year. And attendees were spoilt for choice with the diversity of technology, capability and engineering services on display, as well as by far the most diverse programme of free-to-attend expert supported presentations in the event’s history.
Stone continued “This year’s free to attend technical programmes, in the four integrated open forums, were a great success with standing room only for many sessions. With 150+ speakers over the two days, attendees at the 2012 event could pick and choose from dedicated aerospace, composites and automotive engineering sessions, together with a host of general sessions addressing such key areas as LEP strategies for advanced engineering growth, quality management and standards, IP management, Innovation management, and more.”
Dedicated Aero Engineering, Composites Engineering and Automotive Engineering sessions were supported with hosted content streams from several sector infrastructure bodies including NetComposites and CompositesUK taking the lead in programme content across the composites engineering sector.
Delegate level attendees were additionally treated to a tailored stream of keynote briefings, providing insight into the ‘big picture landscape’ of Advanced Engineering industries in the UK. Notable within this was the contribution from Dick Elsy, newly appointed CEO of The High Value Manufacturing Catapult. This reflected the wider comprehensive ‘HVM Catapult’ partner participation across this year’s group of events.
Ian Stone comments “The full range of the HVM Catapult’s integrated capability, encompassing seven delivery partners and designed to accelerate the commercialisation of new and emerging manufacturing technologies in the UK , was evident in abundance throughout the show, with six Catapult partners either exhibiting, presenting or both this year: these included AMRC with Boeing, Manufacturing Technology Centre, Advanced Forming Research Centre, National Composites Centre, Centre for Process Innovation and WMG.”
For 2013 and to accommodate its continued growth, the Advanced Engineering UK group of events will be moving to Hall 5 at NEC Birmingham (its largest and showpiece hall).
On the 2013 show Stone concludes “The UK is committed to maintaining the high ground globally in high value engineering and manufacturing. As well as providing an impressive international showcase of UK plc.’s capability in these high value markets, the event will continue to advance industry, government and academic ambitions, objectives and strategies by providing a crucial annual focal point around which stakeholders, partners and supply chain communities across all of these interlinked sectors can do business through networking, sourcing capability, transferring technology and best practice.”
The 2013 show will run 12 – 13 November.
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