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The Friday Roundup – 11/01/2019

Welcome to this year’s first edition of The Friday Roundup! Every Friday, we round up our top 5 most popular reads from the week, along with sharing some of our favourite finds from around the web.

This week’s roundup sees McLaren Automotive announce record global sales, BAE Systems prepare to recruit 700 new apprentices in 2019, plus a look at four essential truths needed for IoT success

Our top 5 most read this week

1. BAE Systems to recruit 700 apprentices in 2019

BAE Systems has announced plans to recruit nearly 700 apprentices across its UK business, a 30 per cent increase on 2018. The new recruits will join the Air, Land and Maritime businesses in September 2019 and will embark on one of 25 training programmes, which provide the opportunity to combine full time employment with studying for a recognised qualification. Charles Woodburn, Chief Executive Officer at BAE Systems, said: “We are proud to be one of the UK’s largest employers of apprentices and our plan to recruit nearly 700 apprentices next year reflects our ongoing commitment to nurturing talent and developing high end skills for the future.” BAE Systems invests approximately £90m per year in education, skills and early careers activities in the UK and has around 2,000 apprentices in training across its UK businesses at any given time, with circa 95% securing permanent roles each year. The majority of BAE Systems’  apprentices train for engineering related roles and undergo a three to four-year training programme, with many progressing to study Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.
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2. McLaren Automotive announces record global sales

Global sales for McLaren Automotive, the British creator of luxury sportscars and supercars, rose to 4,806 cars in 2018 with sales up 43.9 per cent over the previous year. This is another record for the company which has increased sales every year since its formation in 2010. North America, which represents McLaren’s biggest single market and over a third of global sales, surpassed the 5,000 cars sold mark since sales started in 2011 and achieved another year of record growth. European sales rose 44.2 per cent but the biggest leap was seen in China at 122.5 per cent growth following the introduction of the 570S Spider and 720S. China now accounts for almost 7 per cent of total global sales. McLaren’s UK domestic market remained strong, achieving a 49.2 per cent year-on-year growth. McLaren’s in-house bespoke division, McLaren Special Operations (MSO), which undertakes special vehicle commission and customisation, also had a busy year. More customers are now choosing to add unique, additional luxury touches to their acquisitions which has seen the MSO order book triple in one year.
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3. UK manufacturing PMI hits 6-month high

Figures from the latest IHS Markit/CIPS UK Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index for December 2018 show a dramatic improvement on the performance of recent months, at a six-month high of 54.2 – an impressive leap forwards compared to November’s seasonally adjusted 53.6; and even better considering the disappointing 51.1 result in October. It is also a strong result compared to the faltering Eurozone figure of 51.4 for the same period. New business has increased steadily since the drop in October, with increased industry confidence apparent for the year ahead. Stocks of purchases increased and contributed to growth in the sector. New orders are up at the highest for ten months, coming from domestic and international markets. Atul Kariya, from MHA MacIntyre Hudson, said: “There have been a few up and downs over the last 12 months and these latest figures are encouraging. In recent weeks, we have seen many businesses spring into action with their Brexit plans. The impact of increasing stockholdings, as the very real threat of major supply chain disruption looms post 29th March 2019, will no doubt have had an impact on these latest figures. Whether they can be sustained in the coming months with the current level of uncertainty remains to be seen.”
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4. £24m research facility opens to transform UK manufacturing

With manufacturing on the cusp of a technological revolution, a flagship research facility has opened its doors at the University of Nottingham to help future-proof UK industry in a competitive global market. With a total research portfolio of £80m, the nationally-significant development consolidates the University’s manufacturing science and technology capabilities, expertise and industrial support. The Advanced Manufacturing Building (AMB) is home to the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing (IfAM), which has 96,000 sq ft of world-class research and teaching facilities for design, manufacturing, assembly and metrology, measurement, testing and modelling. Professor Svetan Ratchev, Director of IfAM, described the AMB as one of the largest manufacturing, engineering, teaching and research facilities in the UK, housing some 400 staff, students and researchers. Juergen Maier, Chief Executive of Siemens UK, added: “This new facility heralds the start of something truly special for Nottingham, and will help place the region and indeed the country at the cutting edge of digital manufacturing. Why is this important? It’s important because our future lies in driving a new technological revolution focusing on AI, automation, robotics and 3d printing as well as many other new exciting technologies. It will ensure graduates are at the cutting edge and ready to take up the high productivity, high wage jobs of the future.”
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5. UK aerospace sector set for new delivery record

November saw 168 aircraft deliveries, the highest ever achieved for the month and the third highest month on record overall. These deliveries take the total for the first 11 months of 2018 to 1389, an advance of 104 aircraft compared to the same point in the record setting 2017. The month’s deliveries were worth up to £3bn to the UK, which manufactures major components like wings, engines, landing gear and avionics for the world’s most widely flown commercial aircraft. The total value to UK industry of deliveries so far this year has now reached up to £26bn. The anticipated total number of deliveries for the year has been revised down to 1600 from 1710 as major manufacturers adjust expectations in light of slower than expected engine deliveries. However, 2018 is still set to achieve a substantial new record in aircraft deliveries, going beyond the 2017 total of 1498. Demand also remains strong, with the backlog of orders staying above 14,000 for an entire year for the first time.
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Our favourite #GBmfg & #UKmfg tweets of the week

Recommendation roundup

Our picks of the business and manufacturing related content that caught our attention this week.

1. Rolls-Royce car manufacturing will stay in Britain after Brexit, says boss / via @itvnews

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars belongs to Britain and will not move manufacturing elsewhere after Brexit, its boss has said as the company unveils record sales figures. Chief executive, Torsten Muller-Otvos, told reporters the idea of moving the car maker abroad was a “complete no-go for me”. “Rolls-Royce belongs to Britain,” he said. Brexit has made the future of the UK’s car manufacturing industry uncertain, with Toyota, Jaguar Land Rover and Vauxhall among those to warn of negative impacts in the event of a hard Brexit. Both Rolls-Royce and Mini will also move their annual shutdown, which usually takes place in summer, to the first two weeks of April so the manufacturers can get to grips with the Brexit outcome. Rolls-Royce’s commitment to the UK comes as it announces annual sales of 4,107 vehicles in 2018, marking a 22% increase on the prior year’s total of 3,362.
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2. Four essential truths for IoT success / via @IndustryWeek

Remember stories about executives in the mid ‘90s who had their assistants print emails and put them in a neat pile on their desks? They used the new tech, but limited its usefulness by forcing it into their existing mindset. There’s an important moral to the story regarding the Internet of Things (IoT): No matter how much IoT technology you buy, if you don’t make significant attitudinal changes, you can’t realise its full potential. Four of these attitudes – essential truths – are examined in this article.
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3. Do you have the skills needed for the new Industrial Revolution? / via @TheScotsman

With technology changing rapidly and the economy undergoing rapid transformation due to the fourth industrial revolution, having a skilled workforce – with relevant and up-to-date expertise – is more important now than ever before. Technology is changing so quickly that skills could be outdated before college courses are complete, underscoring the need for ‘learning while earning’, writes David Coyne of the Centre for Work-Based Learning.
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And finally, some bonus picks to add to your reading list this weekend:

1. How to keep your new year’s resolutions, according to the experts / via @bbcthree

At the end of 2017, 64% of those who had made New Year’s resolutions said they’d failed to keep them. In fact, that poll found that, by 6 January, one in five people had failed to stick to their resolutions. So what is the key to stop us all feeling like failures come spring? Wouldn’t it be great if, by the end of 2019, we’d found a way to overcome this ‘resolution paralysis’? For those of you on the brink of falling off the wagon, a selection of experts share their tips on the best ways to stick to your resolutions…
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2. Greggs struggles to keep up with demand for vegan sausage rolls / via @guardian

Launched on January 3, the new vegan sausage roll by Greggs is “flying off the shelves”, leaving Britain’s biggest bakery chain unable to keep up with demand after selling hundreds of thousands in the first week. The £1 rolls have been selling out rapidly, depleting the stocks held at Greggs’ factory in Newcastle, where they are made and frozen before being sent out to shops to bake. Roger Whiteside, the chief executive, said the firm had been taken by surprise over their popularity and the level of publicity surrounding the launch, and was ramping up production in response. He said the popularity of the new vegan roll had not dented sales of Greggs’ traditional sausage rolls, which also increased last week. Greggs sells about 1.5m of the meat version every week. Whiteside made the comments alongside a trading update for the final three months of the year. Shares jumped nearly 7% to a record high of £14.61, and the company is expecting pre-tax profits of at least £88m for 2018, having already upgraded its guidance in November, when it said profits would be at least £86m. Greggs made a pre-tax profit of £81.8m in 2017.
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Spot something you think we should see? Share with us! Email and we may feature it in an upcoming post.