Thursday, February 29, 2024

Made Smarter East Midlands opens to micro manufacturers

Following the Autumn Statement’s announcement of the nationwide expansion of Made Smarter Adoption until 2027, the Made Smarter East Midlands programme eligibility criteria will now be expanded to include micro sized manufacturers with a headcount of one to nine people.

Since its launch a year ago, the East Midlands Made Smarter Programme has only been open to SME Manufacturers in Leicestershire, Greater Lincolnshire, Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire with headcounts between 10 and 249 people. With immediate effect the programme will now be accepting expressions of interest from micro sized manufacturers.

Made Smarter East Midlands now offers the following support to the region’s micro manufacturing businesses: Digital Road Mapping (a lighter touch road map is available to micro businesses, which will set out a Digital Implementation Plan); access to 10 hours of fully funded Industrial Digital Technology Advice (IDTA); grant funding to support CAPEX and revenue projects.

Programme director Dr Chris Owen said: “We are absolutely delighted we can now expand the scope of the East Midlands Made Smarter programme to thousands of micro SME manufacturers across the region.

“Since we opened our doors for business in December 2022, we have had a healthy interest from micro sized manufacturers who are eager for support to adopt industrial digital technology but we have been unable to help them.

“We’ll be reaching out to all those micro manufacturers who have already registered an expression of interest in Made Smarter East Midlands, and opening our doors to new expressions of interest from other micro manufacturers across the region.

“We have created a pathway of support specifically designed for micro manufacturers, which is quicker and lighter touch than the core programme, but still gives companies access to packages of free and impartial technical advice and grant funding of up to £20,000 to help them adopt industrial digital technology.”

Alongside the new micro manufacturer pathway the core programme will still continue to accept expressions of interest from manufacturers with headcounts of 10 to 249 people.

In just one year, Made Smarter East Midlands has engaged with over 150 manufacturing businesses across the region providing much needed grant funding, free and impartial technical advice, digital transformation road mapping and Leadership Development.

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