Made Smarter Innovation: Ecosystem of UK Manufacturing Hubs & Accelerators

The Made Smarter Innovation Programme is investing £30m to collaboratively develop novel digital solutions for key manufacturing challenges through a network of test beds and £6m in Digital Technology Accelerators to provide a catalyst for accelerating technology development and initiating partnerships with industry.

The innovation hubs are a national network of facilities available to the manufacturing industry, to develop, demonstrate and test digital solutions for manufacturing and supply chains. Both of these exciting innovation programmes will be explored in this webinar.

Event Details


12.00 - 13.30



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The Made Smarter technology accelerator is a national programme, set to respond to specific digital technology innovation led challenges set by the manufacturing industry. Working with both manufacturers and innovative UK startups and scaleups, the programme is seeing innovators develop technology prototypes that will solve a specific challenge, and have the potential to scale up across the industry to support some of the UK’s most prevalent manufacturing challenges.

Webinar recording is now available


In this webinar we will hear about the resounding success of the early Hubs and Digital Accelerator programmes and meet some of the exciting organisations who have been involved so far.

Simon Coward, Made Smarter Innovation lead will provide insights into the thinking behind the Hubs, what’s happened so far, what the future Hubs programmes will include and how YOU can get involved.

Made Smarter Innovation Deputy Challenge Director Ben Farmer will provide an overview of the Made Smarter Innovation Technology Strategy and what that means for manufacturers, integrators and digital technology solution providers.

Made Smarter Innovation Network lead at KTN, Nicole Ballantyne will share an overview of Innovation Alley, an amazing opportunity for disruptive technology businesses to showcase their game-changing innovations targeting the UK’s manufacturing sector.  Nicole will explain why the Alley is an integral part of the Made Smarter Innovation Network programme and how YOU can get involved.

Justin Cross, Senior Innovation Partner at Digital Catapult will share insights into the Made Smarter Technology Accelerator, designed for industry, some of the cohorts who have already received funding and how YOU can get involved. Match-funded partners work to scope and define the real-world challenges faced today and into the future. The programme is made real by the UK’s powerful technology startups, by providing them with the funding and a platform to develop prototypes that will pivot some of the UK’s most relevant manufacturing and industrial challenges.

Justin will also share information on the £10 million Made Smarter innovation digital supply chain innovation hub. This four-year programme will create an effective and integrated ecosystem to develop new solutions and transform manufacturing. The hub is designed to drive innovation for all potential users, including large and small technologies providers and manufacturers. It will also form part of a national network cluster of test beds, living labs and other developmental environments.

The winner of the £20 million smart factory innovation hub will be announced later.

About the Series | Who should attend?

If you are a manufacturer aspiring to be more productive, efficient, competitive and resilient through the use of digital technologies, an integrator or a digital technology solution provider or developer who wants to reach a manufacturing audience, then this event series will be of interest to you.

We will be discussing a range of upcoming Made Smarter and manufacturing-related events, funding opportunities and programmes throughout this webinar series so make sure to register now to keep up to date on a wide variety of upcoming opportunities within the industry.

Digital technology solution providers and developers engaged in the series will also have early access to express their interest in taking a stand at Innovation Alley, within The Manufacturers inaugural exhibition Smart Factory Expo at Digital Manufacturing Week.

Webinar Sessions

Related programme

Made Smarter | Innovation Network

Made Smarter | Innovation Network

From 2021 to 2025, Innovate UK Business Connect will be working on behalf of UKRI to join communities together to transform UK manufacturing. Join the Made Smarter Innovation Network and help us drive positive change.


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