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LYVA Labs launches Liverpool City Region’s advanced manufacturing innovation cluster

Liverpool City Region’s (LCR’s) thriving advanced manufacturing sector has been identified as a unique cluster of excellence due to the density and range of activity in the region - receiving investment and promotion from the Combined Authority and Innovate UK Launchpads programme.

LYVA Labs was set up to support innovative businesses, and R&D, and to drive growth and investment in the Liverpool City Region. Earlier this year, we were awarded Launchpad innovation cluster manager status for advanced manufacturing, to further support and stimulate this growing sector.

Since then, LYVA Labs has established a programme of support for LCR’s advanced manufacturing innovation cluster that gives SMEs, researchers, and businesses the chance to share ideas, collaborate, network, and to learn about funding opportunities. A dedicated LinkedIn page highlights these opportunities, and a series of themed events (promoted on the Linkedin page) will be taking place throughout the year.

The first event, themed around supply-chain resilience, took place at The Spine, in The Knowledge Quarter, this week. The event was opened by LYVA Labs’ CEO Lorna Green, who discussed the importance of the programme for LCR and the role LYVA Labs can play in advancing this sector.

Innovate UK’s Northwest Manager, Rick Holland, gave an overview of the Launchpad programme’s overall ambitions for driving innovation and growth, and the importance of innovation as a vehicle for reducing inter-regional disparities.

LYVA Labs’ Advanced Manufacturing Innovation Cluster Manager, Paul Tallon, explained how LYVA Labs can help to facilitate and enable innovation and how businesses can get involved.

Two speakers from Innovate UK Edge, Trevor Marshall, and Kevin Hallas, discussed international markets and how they promote sustainability in advanced manufacturing. They provided details of an upcoming GBIP trade mission, which is on our LinkedIn page.

Staying on the topic of international markets, Nicole Ballantyne from MESTEC, who developed the world’s first SaaS-based Manufacturing Execution System,

Jonathan Jones, from the Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA), was our next speaker. Jonathan provided an insight into the accelerator itself, as well as how it seeks and funds exploitable innovation. DASA supports the integration of novel technologies, materials, and processes into defence and security supply chains.

Our penultimate speaker was the Operations Director at Nexatrak, Sujita Purushothama. Sujita spoke from the perspective of an SME working in innovation and advanced manufacturing. She discussed the challenges small and medium businesses face when applying advanced manufacturing technologies to new industries, and how SMEs can become more resilient by investing in advanced manufacturing technologies.

Kyle Hatchard, from the Northwest Aerospace Alliance, was our final speaker. He referenced the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and asked the audience how many of them considered integrating these into working practices, for long-term sustainability.

All speakers took part in an engaging Q&A session and a networking lunch followed the speaker session. New connections were made, showing that LCR is a great place to be for support networks and collaboration.

LYVA Labs would like to give a huge thank you to our speakers and our audience, who made their way to the event.

To learn more about this innovation network please contact Paul Tallon, Innovation Manager – Advanced Manufacturing, at LYVA Labs,

[1] Taken from MESTEC’s Company Overview