Helping Sheffield City Region (SCR) Combined Authority collaborate with Pune on advanced manufacturing
A key focus of SCR’s ten-year Trade & Investment Strategy is developing stronger relationships with high growth non-EU markets. Given India’s significant growth potential, SCR has made it a priority to help local businesses work with and operate in India, while also attracting Indian investors and innovators to collaborate with its universities, and attracting more students from India.
To help it achieve these goals, SCR commissioned the UK India Business Council (UKIBC)—a key partner of PwC’s India Business Group—to conduct a location and strategy analysis. This showed that the sectors offering the best fit included advanced manufacturing, automotive, defence, and MedTech, and that the city of Pune in Maharashtra provided strong opportunities for collaboration in advanced manufacturing. SCR is now developing a market entry plan to collaborate with Pune in several areas.
SCR’s experience of working with UKIBC on its strategy for India underlined the importance of making the right connections on the ground, something UKIBC was uniquely qualified to help with. Other lessons learned included the need for a detailed location analysis to pinpoint the strongest complementarities with Indian states, and the benefits of engaging with and involving a variety of institutions, including SCR’s main universities and many businesses.
UK Autodrive: Drawing on Tata Motors technologies to drive forward innovation in driverless vehicles in the UK
UK Autodrive is an initiative aimed at integrating driverless cars into everyday life in the UK. Launched to support the UK Government’s ambition to see driverless cars on the UK’s roads by 2021, the three-year, £20m project is co-funded by Innovate UK, and brings together 15 partners including three global car manufacturers (OEMs). One of these is Tata Motors, India’s largest automobile manufacturer, whose Tata Motors European Technical Centre (TMETC) is a key participant in the project. Other partners include engineering businesses, academia and Milton Keynes and Coventry councils, reflecting the two cities’ acknowledged strengths in high-end automotive technology.
Involving India’s Tata Motors in UK Autodrive meant it benefited from TMETC’s world-renowned research and development capabilities. Working closely with the other two OEMs—Jaguar Land Rover and Ford Motor—Tata Motors’ TMETC was instrumental in the successful testing of the automated vehicles and connected vehicle technologies, and in demonstrating the benefits they can bring. Strong leadership from the host cities was key in setting the context for the demonstrations, and committed buy-in and collaboration among the OEMs were vital to the project’s success. The result was the delivery of a proven driverless vehicle capability, supported by Indian innovation, that is potentially transferable to other locations in the UK and the rest of the world, including India.