Earlier this month, The Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LCR LEP) offered a number of Growth Hub Partners the opportunity to come down to the waterfront to learn more about the new and exciting, LCR 4.0 project. Part-funded by ERDF, LCR 4.0 has the potential to revolutionise the way manufacturers in the region utilise technology within their businesses.
4IR stands for the Fourth Industrial Revolution and it is currently spreading all over the world at a rapid pace. Places like Europe and China have quickly adopted the new technologies which are all about increasing connectivity, but as yet England has been slow to step up to the new and developing possibilities ahead.
It is predicted that in just 25 years, all manufacturing businesses will be using these technologies in so called ‘SMART factories’. This is a huge movement and our focus is to ensure that England and Liverpool in particular are not left behind. The time to start considering these possibilities is now to ensure you stay competitive and continue to offer your customer what they want without losing stable positioning within your supply chain.
Using such technologies including big data, augmented and virtual realities, autonomous systems, additive manufacturing, systems integration, cloud computing and more will ensure higher efficiency, quicker supply chains without losing value and quality and offering customers what they want, in quicker time.
Manufacturing in Liverpool
The manufacturing industry has always been a massive part of Liverpool. With a huge range of companies of all different sizes, the city is home to Jaguar Land Rover, Johnson Controls, Unilever and many more including a huge number of SMEs.
Manufacturing is a vital asset to the Liverpool City Region economy, supporting nearly 50,000 staff in 3,000 companies and directly contributing £3.2bn to the overall economy – Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership.
LCR4.0 exclusively offers local businesses and SMEs the opportunity to adopt these new and exciting digital technologies into their own businesses whilst being offered support, help and advice through a number of experienced companies and organisations using the most up to date research and expertise.
The project considers how to aid growth within all companies we collaborate with as well as protecting and creating jobs within the industry. Liverpool has been offered a fantastic opportunity as it is believed the city has the potential and capacity to be national leaders, possibly even European leaders, should the city adopt Industry 4.0 technologies now.
This is a fantastic and unique opportunity which does not often appear for SMEs, especially as there is no cost incurred for the businesses wanting to join the project.
The project is backed by a great range of partners, all in their own field of expertise with a strong understanding and current use of Industry 4.0 technologies already. These include the University of Liverpool (through its Virtual Engineering Centre), The Science Technology Faculty Council’s Hartree Centre, Sensor City and Liverpool John Moores University (Faculty of the Engineering and Technology).
The LCR LEP is also working hard to approach local businesses and SMEs within the manufacturing industry to see how the project can help their business as well as how they can get involved today.
To learn more about the LCR 4.0 project, please visit the official website: www.lcr4.uk