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    NAA Update Number Two!: Latest news from Carol Holden

    Carol Holden provides an update on some of the work that she has been doing since September last year in her three days a week role…

    My core activity is being the NAA lead for the FAST Step 3 Innovate UK funded collaborative project. In addition, I provide support for members on their technical bids, take a look at
    – see the bid-writing section on this page, explaining the type of work we do and how we can support you.

    While Rowan was on holiday, I was fortunate to attend the Siemens VIP dinner in Liverpool following the Digital In Manufacturing exhibition. We had the benefit of a panel discussion and my main takeaway was that we need to ensure that as part of the manufacturing community our voice needs to be heard (something that we are not very good at compared to the fishermen or farmers etc) and that we should be asking our MPs, civic leaders etc:

    • what they are going to be doing to support the manufacturing industry, and get them to be specific
    • why a no deal Brexit is a disaster for the community
    • for their long-term commitment to manufacturing.

    I have also just returned from two days at the Innovate UK 2018 Women in Innovation winners boot camp where I am privileged to be one of the Senior Business Mentors to this amazing group of nine women. More details on them can be found at

    Take a look at the following three women, their innovations and their companies:

    • Gravity Sketch and Daniela Paredes-Fuenta: put simply the ability to sketch in 3D, come back and modify and feed directly into more traditional 3D packages such as Catia, Autodesk etc
    • Total Control Pro and Dolores Sanders: a digital manufacturing monitoring system with which you can be operational within a week, increasing your throughput and therefore turnover by around 30%
    • KG Protech and Cintia Kimura: who has developed a remote training package for electric vehicles to support the development of the technician population where only 1% have been trained to operate and repair EVs.

    I was also able to meet up with our NAA Award winner for the 2015 Jaguar Land Rover Innovation award, Pauline Dawes, and understand how her business has developed after she won the inaugural 2016 Women In Innovation Award. Her product, while not yet successful in the UK, has had more prototypes built and operational and there is huge interest in the innovation from both the US and China, and she is expecting to land a large contract imminently.


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