WMG launches new support programme for manufacturers

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WMG at the University of Warwick has launched a new programme of support for UK SMEs in the manufacturing supply chain.  The programme which is funded by Innovate UK offers SMEs free access to expertise in low volume manufacturing, prototyping, materials testing as well as support with making factories and products smarter through the application of Internet of Things technology. 

Many companies are already taking advantage of the programme. Industrial racking manufacturer Wickens Engineering Ltd recently worked with WMG's SME Group to develop and retro-fit ‘Internet of Things’ technology to monitor the piece rate of a punching machine that Wickens use on their shop floor. Steve Wickens, managing director of Wickens Engineering said:

 “All I want is to measure the efficiency of my key machines, and the internet-of-things approach has allowed me to work out how to dovetail older equipment with state-of-the-art kit." 

Another company to benefit has been Region Services Ltd based in Coventry. They develop and supply public information systems, such as interactive terminals, broadcast screens and smart ticketing machines.  They have benefited from the use of Additive Layer Manufacturing (3D Printing) to develop proof of concept pieces for new customers. Peter Cieslak, head of product development and procurement said:

"We have had a very positive experience working with the SME Group at WMG. We were able to produce a large complex prototype to evaluate which is now in production, leading to jobs secured and created in our business. Connecting small businesses in the region with University expertise is an effective mode of boosting the local economy and is an essential ingredient for manufacturers to innovate and grow."

For more information about how your business can benefit from this support programme visit: http://www.warwick.ac.uk/wmg/business/sme/

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