Telford business excited by opportunities Investment Zone may bring
A Telford-based digital manufacturer has welcomed recent news that the West Midlands will be one of the newly designated Investment Zones for advanced manufacturing.
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt handed the region a major economic boost in his Autumn Statement recently by unveiling plans for the Investment Zone with the power to drive up to £5.5bn of growth. The zone will benefit from a mix of tax incentives, direct funding and business rate retention.
It will focus on driving growth in advanced manufacturing, green industries, health-tech and underlying digital technologies.
Bjoern Klaas, Vice President & MD of Protolabs Europe, said: "It was pleasing to see the Chancellor announce that the West Midlands will be one of the newly designated Investment Zones for advanced manufacturing.
"As a digital manufacturer based in Telford, we welcome the opportunities this will bring for businesses like us, helping to fuel innovation and drive growth in the region.
"There are great changes happening across the manufacturing sector, both in the way products are being developed and in the products themselves. Emerging technologies are introducing many new possibilities – for example, 4D printing where objects or textiles which change shape or properties in response to external elements, such as heat, light or moisture, can now be created.
"Manufacturers also have important sustainability goals that they need to reach. So, a large amount of product development is now focused around de-carbonising and incorporating ultra-efficient technologies.
"Our own study of 450 manufacturing executives shows that sustainability is a major driver in innovation, and a key reason for manufacturers to develop new products.
"The extra investment will go some way towards meeting these goals and in ensuring that innovation is put at the heart of manufacturing."
Protolabs has been operating in Telford since 2005 and provides custom components in as fast as one day, using automated 3D printing, CNC machining and injection moulding technologies.