Advanced manufacturing

Business West looks to wider talent pool for new directors to avoid its board becoming ‘echo chamber’

January 17, 2021
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Business West looks to wider talent pool for new directors to avoid its board becoming ‘echo chamber’

Business West, the region’s largest business group, has broken with its traditional method of recruiting for its board to take on three new non-executive directors. The £10m turnover group, which runs the Swindon & Wiltshire Initiative, said the move was designed to access a wider talent pool that represented the full range of the...

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Export Academy set up to give Swindon firms help selling to overseas markets

January 8, 2021
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Export Academy set up to give Swindon firms help selling to overseas markets

Swindon’s small businesses can access help and advice to grow internationally through a new, free, post-Brexit programme. The Export Academy involves overseas trade experts from the Department for International Trade (DIT) hosting a series of online workshops and events offering advice and support directly to business owners.  The programme has been designed for businesses...

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Former World Bank lead economist to become next chair of alternative regional lender SWIG Finance

January 6, 2021
By
SWIG

Malachy McReynolds, the chair of regional alternative finance lender SWIG Finance, is to step down in March after five years in the role. He will be replaced by Christine Allison, a former lead economist for the World Bank, who has been a non-executive director of SWIG Finance for the past three-and-a-half years. During that...

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New ‘body blow’ for Swindon businesses as UK enters third national lockdown

January 5, 2021
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New ‘body blow’ for Swindon businesses as UK enters third national lockdown

The latest lockdown will be another “body blow” to Swindon firms, coming after the uncertainty caused by Brexit and lost trade in the run-up to Christmas, the region’s biggest business group warned today. Business West, which runs the Swindon & Wiltshire Initiative, said firms that had survived so far with Covid-related support from the...

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Pair of new non-exec directors strengthens pharma group Vectura’s board

January 4, 2021
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Pair of new non-exec directors strengthens pharma group Vectura’s board

Chippenham-based specialist pharmaceutical firm Vectura has boosted its board with the appointment of two new independent non-executive directors. Jeanne Hecht and Jeanne Thoma took up their roles at the firm, which develops inhalable dry-powder drugs that treat lung conditions such as asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis, on December 31.  Jeanne Hecht was most recently CEO...

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2030 net zero carbon goal adopted by Business West – with a vow to help firms reach same target

December 23, 2020
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2030 net zero carbon goal adopted by Business West – with a vow to help firms reach same target

Business West, the region’s largest business organisation, is aiming to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030 and has introduced three new steps to help it – and firms across the South West – reach the ambitious target. The organisation, which runs the Swindon and Wiltshire Initiative and represents 23,000 businesses across the region,...

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Survey shows region’s high-growth firms adapting to new normal to resume expansion

December 21, 2020
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Survey shows region’s high-growth firms adapting to new normal to resume expansion

More than two-thirds of high-growth firms in the South West plan to continue to expand next year after adapting for a post-Covid world, new research shows. According to the first survey to chart these businesses during the coronavirus pandemic it has created significant barriers to growth for 58% of South West firms, with operational...

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‘Perfect storm’ for manufacturers as survey shows Brexit uncertainty colliding with impact of Covid-19

December 18, 2020
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‘Perfect storm’ for manufacturers as survey shows Brexit uncertainty colliding with impact of Covid-19

Just 2% of the South West’s small to medium-sized manufacturers think Brexit will have a positive impact on their recovery, while more than half admit they still cannot predict how the transition out of the EU will affect their business. And with the UK-EU talks entering their final hours with no sign of a...

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Government financial support for locked down firms covered just quarter of their costs, survey shows

December 13, 2020
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Government financial support for locked down firms covered just quarter of their costs, survey shows

West of England Firms have slammed government financial support for businesses forced to close during the most recent lockdown as grossly inadequate. Some 54% of businesses that were shuttered during November – including restaurants, cafes and non-essential retailers – said the financial assistance covered less than a quarter of their overheads, a new survey...

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Honda pauses production at Swindon car plant as parts deliveries are hit by UK port delays

December 9, 2020
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Honda pauses production at Swindon car plant as parts deliveries are hit by UK port delays

Production at car giant Honda’s Swindon plant is being paused because of a shortage of parts, the firm announced today. The plant, which will close permanently next year with the loss of all 3,500 jobs, was being hit by “transport-related parts delay”, Honda said.  A number of UK ports are struggling to cope with...

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