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Hammond promises to embrace 4IR to boost UK productivity

The UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, has said that the Government will embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) to help transform the UK’s productivity and ensure that the country remains at the cutting edge.

UK manufacturers are ‘unprepared’ for Industry 4.0

The UK is “badly underprepared” for Industry 4.0, says a new report from the industrial services company, Eriks. The report, based on a survey of 200 UK engineers, reveals that 61% are not undertaking any Industry 4.0 initiatives, despite the vast majority (80%) believing it will have a positive effect on their production and maintenance practices.

UK start-up aims to make life easier for IIoT developers

A new UK company has been created to help systems integrators and IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) developers to market their products faster and at a lower cost. Bristol-based Sixis has been set up by industry veterans Chris Begent and Tony Richardson and will sell technologies originally developed by Telemesis ­– formerly the telemetry division of AlanDick, which Begent and Richardson acquired as part of an MBO team in 2008.

Mid-sized manufacturers outperform rivals

Medium-sized UK manufacturers have outpaced their smaller and larger counterparts’ revenue growth over the past five years – but may be left to fend for themselves post-Brexit, according to business and accountancy firm BDO, which has released a report calling for the Government to prioritise the needs of mid-sized manufacturers.

AEMT launches electrical and mechanical awards

AEMT – the Association of Electrical and Mechanical Trades – has launched its own awards scheme to recognise the achievements of individuals and companies in this sector of UK industry. The first awards will be made at a dinner and ceremony to be held in Coventry, UK, on 29 November, 2017.

The UK’s robotics lag could worsen after Brexit

The UK’s departure from the European Union could have a further detrimental effect on the uptake of industrial robots in the UK, according to a new report from the Centre for Economic and Business Research (Cebr) and Redwood Software. The report also suggests that investment in robotics offers better long-term value-for-money than investments in financial services, property or transport.

Dowding & Mills is now Sulzer Electro Mechanical Services

Sulzer has announced that Dowding & Mills (UK) has changed its legal name to Sulzer Electro Mechanical Services (UK). Its portfolio of electrical services and mechanical repairs will not change, and it will continue to repair and maintain rotating equipment, and provide specialised services for pumps and turbomachinery.

One-year automation degree aims to help plug the UK skills gap

The University of Salford has joined forces with Siemens to launch a Bachelor of Engineering (BEng) degree in control and automation, to help address the skills shortage affecting UK industry.

£9.7m support scheme aims to unlock SME potential

A new £9.7m manufacturing support initiative has been announced to help fill the void left by the axing of the Manufacturing Advisory Service in 2015. The Manufacturing Growth Programme (MGP) will provide access to specialists to help firms grow and improve. It is targeting SME manufacturers in the West Midlands, parts of the East Midlands, East of England and Yorkshire and Humber.

Yorkshire raid discovers 1.5 tonnes of fake bearings

Thousands of counterfeit bearings, weighing a total of around 1.5 tonnes, have been seized by the West Yorkshire Trading Standards authority after a raid on a distributor in the county. Industrial and automotive bearings in 170 types and sizes were confiscated.

Chinese firm buys UK’s Trio Motion for £15.5m

The Chinese automation and robotics manufacturer Estun Automation has bought the long-established British motion control specialist Trio Motion Technology for £15.5m in cash.

UK automation firms see no benefits from moving to WTO rules

A survey of 83 member companies of the UK automation trade body Gambica and the electrical trade body Beama, has revealed that they have an almost entirely negative view of the prospects of adopting WTO (World Trade Organisation) rules for future trading between the UK and the European Union.

ABB picks Melling to run UK drives and controls business

ABB has appointed Stuart Melling to lead its variable-speed drives and controls business in the UK following the promotion of Neil Ritchie to a role in global service management.

Mclennan takes on stepper drives after SmartDrive enters liquidation

The Cambridgeshire motion control specialist SmartDrive has gone into liquidation after more than 30 years of business. The rights to its stepper drive designs have been acquired by Surrey-based Mclennan.

Invertek sells its millionth VSD and prepares to expand

The Welsh drives-maker Invertek Drives has achieved the milestone of selling more than one million variable-frequency drives worldwide since its was founded in 1998 by a group of former Control Techniques employees. The company is currently producing more than 160,000 drives per year at its headquarters in Welshpool, with output growing by more than 20% each year.