The automotive sector in the Midlands is gearing up for yet another boost as Mills & Reeve announces a three-year sponsorship of Drive Midlands, the Midlands Engine automotive inward investment supply chain programme.
The programme, which is tasked with driving automotive supply chain growth and attracting and supporting additional investment in the region, is set to benefit from the expertise of the corporate and commercial team at Mills & Reeve, a practice with years of experience in delivering legal advice and support to automotive clients across the world including; Jaguar Land Rover, Group Lotus, Peugeot Citroen, Toyota Tsusho, Radical Sportscars and Triumph Motorcycles.
The announcement of the sponsorship follows the firm’s increased focus on facilitating engineering and manufacturing excellence, for which it was recognised at the Financial Times’ Innovative Lawyers Awards 2016 for work on connected and autonomous vehicle technology.
Mills & Reeve will join Lloyds and Arcadis as the only law firm on the list of the programme’s current sponsors.
Jayne Hussey, Commercial Partner at Mills & Reeve Birmingham, said: “Drive Midlands is an incredible initiative that covers both ends of the spectrum when looking to strengthen the region’s position on the domestic and global automotive stages. It’s vital that we continue to support the thriving businesses that are delivering ground breaking research, engineering and manufacturing output, but that we showcase the region’s potential to investors.
“Our sponsorship reaffirms our belief in the future of the industry and our ongoing commitment to the sector where can can apply our wealth of expertise. We hope that our contribution will make a real difference to both the businesses and the regional economy.”
Led by Marketing Birmingham, Department for International Trade’s Automotive Investment Organisation (AIO) and ten regional LEP partners, Drive Midlands offers a single point of reference for automotive businesses by coordinating local support services within the trade. In its first 12 months, it supported 1,200 automotive supply chain firms looking to grow and has helped attract five new companies to the area, creating 265 new jobs.
David Shepherd, Senior Business Development Manager (Automotive) at Marketing Birmingham, who oversees the Drive Midlands initiative, said: “The automotive supply chain in the Midlands is facing a lot of challenges, but also exciting opportunities – especially from new emerging technologies. The automotive and motorsport sectors are well positioned for growth from innovative new products and processes supported by world class development organisations and universities in the region. But it is still hugely important to continue to build on this. The progress of Drive Midlands so far has seen it effect real change and provide vital support, and as we continue to focus our energy on our strategic priorities, we will use these successes to make the Midlands an even stronger hub of automotive talent.
“We are delighted that Mills & Reeve, a firm with an exceptional pool of experts with a track record within our sector, has joined us as a sponsor. We look forward to working with them over the next three years.”