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    NAA Update: Northern Automotive Alliance launched at the Awards Dinner

    The NAA Awards Dinner 2015 was important to recognise the successes of companies operating in the automotive industry in the region, however this year it also marked the launch of the Northern Automotive Alliance…

    What a busy November! Our annual dinner last week was an amazing success, this was our second year at The Mere and the buzz in the room was unbelievable; my thanks go to Mike Hawes who gave us a state-of-the-nation speech that really informed and challenged all of us to be more aware of the issues at hand and to ensure that we play our appropriate part. It was also brilliant to see the two cars that have been launched from manufacturing facilities in the North West this year with both the Bentley Bentayga and the Vauxhall Astra on display, I didn’t think that the doors of the James Braid reception area were large enough to get a car inside, but they were and as a result we all had the benefit of being able to look at the Astra in the warmth and light as we arrived for the dinner.

    My congratulations go to not only all of the Award winners, but also to all the shortlisted companies as you are all winners and I look forward to seeing how your companies develop in the coming year and would encourage you all to participate in the 2016 Awards – start thinking about it now!

    For Event photos please click the following Link NAA 2015 Awards Photos

    As you will read, it was also the launch of a re-brand for NAA (Northwest Automotive Alliance) to NAA (Northern Automotive Alliance) with our prime catchment area now spreading across the M62 corridor to Hull; incorporating Leeds, Huddersfield, Bradford and Sheffield on its way! We already have members from those locations; so this geographic extension is about ensuring that everyone has the same and increased opportunities with us, rather than any dilution of effort.

    Our next meeting is on the 8th December at Kawasaki Robotics; I really enjoyed my visit on their Open Day and I’m sure that you will as well, see the separate article “NAA Event: Meet The Robots” for more details.

    Please reserve the date of Tuesday 17th March in your diaries as on this day we will be holding a joint North West Cluster event that will be focused on lightweighting. With companies attending from the Aerospace, Textiles and Chemical clusters as well as ourselves, it will be an event not to be missed for having an understanding of what is happening within each of the sectors.

    You will be able to continue to reach us on our existing emails, but we all have new email addresses reflecting our Northern Automotive Alliance name (; we are also modifying our LinkedIn and Twitter accounts to reflect the new name. In addition, please ensure that you are following our company page on LinkedIn as this will have all the latest news and updates. The current LinkedIn group will be closed and a new group formed just for NAA members. Martina will be developing and leading our social media activity.

    Congratulations to those of you who have been successful at this point in the recent Innovate UK competitions for lightweighting and IDP12 and for those of you who now need to make further submissions – good luck and remember that as part of your membership we can provide some assistance and support. We are expecting the next round of APC competitions to be launched early next month; so it is time to start thinking if this is relevant for yourselves and if you need our assistance. Remember our aim is to ensure that you are successful and are prepared to help in whatever way is best for you as a company.

    More of the new NAA opportunities for 2016 in the next newsletter…


    European Regional Development Fund Northern Powerhouse
    Partners Department for Business Innovation and Skills Finance Birmingham