Showcasing agri-tech on the world stage at MIPIM

Newport’s new agri-tech focused business park was among £11 billion of investment opportunities from the Midlands showcased at the world’s leading real estate show.

Sites ready for development in both the Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin Council areas were promoted as part of the Midlands UK delegation at MIPIM, which took place in Cannes in March.

Sir John Peace, Chair of the Midlands Engine, was joined by a range of senior keynote speakers who addressed the global investment community during 40 events over the four days of the show.

“MIPIM provides a platform from which we can showcase the many strengths of the Midlands to a wide audience. Our economy, which has remained strong and resilient, presents a compelling offer to potential investors,” said Sir John.

Graham Wynn OBE, Chairman of the Marches LEP, pictured above, said: “We have fantastic investment opportunities in our region, one of the most attractive locations in the UK to live and work.

“Global players including BAE Systems, Caterpillar, and Heineken have already chosen to base their operations here, where we offer a first-class business landscape and an outstanding quality of life.

“MIPIM gave us the chance to showcase what Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford has to offer investors looking to locate in one of the fastest growing areas of the Midlands."

Telford & Wrekin Council’s event focused on its partnership with Harper Adams University to create a cluster of excellence in agri-tech innovation at the heart of which will be a new 25 acre science and innovation park. Ni.Park is being promoted globally by the UK’s Department for International Trade as world-leading in the development of new agri-technology solutions.

Shropshire held two events during MIPIM. Shrewsbury: The Big Connection told investors the story of how the birthplace of Charles Darwin is evolving, where new buildings rub shoulders with re-used older buildings including the Flaxmill Maltings – the grandfather of all skyscrapers.

Shropshire: Rooted in Heritage, Developing for the Future highlighted the county’s countryside, vibrant market towns and strategic central base within the UK, unlocking key development opportunities through infrastructure investment including the Ironbridge Power Station site and on growth corridors such as the M54.

Councillor Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member responsible for economic growth, said: “Last year was our first year at MIPIM and we’re excited to be returning. We were bowled over by the interest we received in our county as a place in which to invest.

“MIPIM gives us access to developers, agents, investors and intermediaries from across the UK and overseas, all in one place. The bonus is that they’re there to do business.”

Notes:

Midlands Engine

  • The government is committed to making the Midlands an Engine for Growth in the UK, increasing economic growth and improving the quality of life for everyone. The Midlands is home to over 10 million people and over 800,000 businesses. Its economy is worth £220 billion.

  • So far the government has awarded £1.9 billion in three rounds of Growth Deals across the Midlands.

  • 8 Enterprise Zones have been established in the Midlands Engine since 2012, and 3 zones have been extended. By March 2016 these had attracted almost £1 billion of private investment, and created 85 new businesses and 7,291 jobs.

The West Midlands Growth Company

The West Midlands Growth Company helps the region make its mark nationally and internationally. Its primary purpose is to attract investment, jobs, visitors and businesses to the West Midlands.

It is committed to promoting the area as a leading place to invest, do business and visit, working in partnership with Local Enterprise Partnerships, Councils, Growth Hubs, Universities, Chambers of Commerce and hundreds of local businesses.

The West Midlands Growth Company plays an important role in supporting the delivery of the West Midlands Combined Authority’s (WMCA) Strategic Economic Plan. Its focus is on the WMCA geography of Greater Birmingham and Solihull, Coventry and Warwickshire, and the Black Country.

Marches LEP

About the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership

  • The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is driving accelerated economic growth through investment in innovation, higher level skills, housing and business sites across the region.

  • The Marches region, which includes Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin, is a dynamic business region where entrepreneurs flourish alongside global players. Covering 2,300 sq miles and with a growing population of 684,300, it is home to 30,775 businesses and a £14.3 billion economy.

  • Bordered by the West Midlands to the east and Wales to the west, the Marches' key centres of population and employment are the city of Hereford and thriving towns of Shrewsbury and Telford.A network of 25 smaller market towns and a large rural area make up the rest of the settlement mix – with the Marches recognised as being one of the most enterprising regions in the UK

  • High profile businesses which have chosen to base operations here include BAE Defence Systems; GKN; Westons Cider; Grainger & Worrall; Stadco; Caterpillar; Mϋller Dairy UK, Doncasters Aerospace, Denso, Capgemini, Ricoh, Cargill, Heineken, Grocontinental, McConnels, Kerry Ingredients, Special Metals, Kingspan and Makita

  • The Marches is also home to centres of excellence and institutions which promote and foster the transfer of knowledge including Harper Adams University and its National Centre for Precision Farming, University Centre Shrewsbury, the University of Wolverhampton campus and e-innovation centre at Priorslee, and Food Enterprise Centre in Shrewsbury

  • The designated Enterprise Zone of the Marches LEP is in Hereford, at Skylon Park. It is the only Enterprise Zone in England with a unique defence and security sector focus, drawing on the city's heritage as the home of the SAS

  • The LEP area is home to some iconic places of interest. The Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site, the Shropshire Hills and the Wye Valley Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Offa’s Dyke, the rivers Severn and Wye, and places of national renown including Ludlow and Ross-on-Wye make it a highly popular place to both visit and relocate to

  • The Marches has a diverse business base and is recognised for its sector strength in advanced manufacturing and engineering; agri-food and drink; automotive and defence & security

  • Business support in the Marches is offered via the Marches Growth Hub, a business-friendly website at www.marchesgrowthhub.co.uk and helpline on 0345 6000 727, developed by the LEP

  • You can learn more about the Marches LEP at www.marcheslep.org.uk and contact the LEP by emailing enquiries@marcheslep.org.uk

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