McLaren has announced it will open a £50 million supercar facility at the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC). Our MD Alexis shares his perspective on why this is a big win for South Yorkshire and an example of what can be achieved through partnership working.
I am massively unlikely to ever buy a McLaren car. I have never sat in one. Why then am I excited about the news that the supercar manufacturer is going to open new facilities in Sheffield and Rotherham?
Reputations matter. The McLaren brand is renowned around the world for true excellence in engineering. Their research and development push the limits of what humans can do on four wheels. Their arrival in South Yorkshire will almost certainly attract additional companies looking to supply the new factory. Their new facility will provide further reason for South Yorkshire to be on the map for those investing and interested in advanced manufacturing.
Domain expertise matters. The ability to specialise in a specific area of the economy will be critical for cities and regions looking to compete successfully. Over the last couple of decades the Local Authorities in Sheffield and Rotherham, the University of Sheffield and blue chip businesses have been quietly building the world-class Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID). Their foresight is paying off. Today’s news will likely be the first in a number of high-profile investments.
Relationships matter. AMID shows that it is possible for Local Authorities to collaborate. Rotherham and Sheffield have been known to compete for investment. Competition is healthy but it can quickly become corrosive. Today’s announcement shows what can be achieved when you work together. The Local Enterprise Partnership has played a significant role in making this happen, bringing our city region together and putting us on the map – huge thanks should go out to them. Congratulations all round are deserved.