Coronavirus: Business advice & support COVID-19 Support


Aerospace: Exploring the opportunities for businesses in the South East Midlands

Organiser: SEMLEP Growth Hub & Aerospace UP



Date & Time: 25 May 2021 - 10:00 am-1:00 pm

Contact Email: [email protected]

The commercial aerospace sector has been significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to a dramatic reduction in passenger traffic, in turn affecting aircraft demand. It is expected to recover slowly but travel demand is not expected to return to pre–COVID-19 levels before 2024.

Yet viewed in the right context, the state of the aerospace industry could represent an opportunity for commercial OEMs and suppliers to make needed changes. The next six to 12 months are a critical period in which to prepare for the recovery. It is particularly true in the SEMLEP area which is a place at the cutting-edge of research and expertise in aerospace and where businesses and universities are among the most successful in the country at working together to commercialise knowledge and test new technologies. The region is at the forefront of the future of flight aerospace sector deal which aims to make the UK a leader of hybrid-electric and electric propulsion and to exploit related new markets such as drones and urban air mobility vehicles.

SEMLEP in partnership with the University of Nottingham and the Midlands Aerospace Alliance are hosting an online event to showcase the aerospace sector research, expertise and opportunities in the region and the business support available to SMEs to make the needed changes for recovery.

10.00 – 10.25am – Welcome & scene setting

Peter Horrocks CBE, Chair, SEMLEP

Hitendra Hirani, EU Programme Manager, University of Nottingham

10.25 – 11.20am – Session 1: Support available for companies in the aerospace sector

Businesses stories showcasing how they benefited from business support

Edward Anastassacos, CEO, HEROTECH​8

Panel discussion

Vicky Hlomuka, Growth Hub Manager, SEMLEP Growth Hub

Dr Pamela Farries, Technology Manager, Midlands Aerospace Alliance & Lisa Brewer, Business Development Officer, University of Nottingham

Liz Boadi, Ecosystem Manager, Cranfield Eagle Lab

Andrew Chadwick, Technology Initiative Lead Aviation, Connected Places Catapult


11.20-11.35pm: Break

11.35 – 12.20pm – Session 2: Research, innovation and commercial opportunities arising from the future of aerospace – how to capitalise on the expertise in the South East Midlands

Iain Gray, CBE, Director of Aerospace, School of Aerospace, Transport and Manufacturing, Cranfield University, Chair of OCAVIA– the Oxford to Cambridge Arc Virtual Institute for Aviation, Arc Universities Group

FlyZero – building UK roadmaps and supply chain to zero-carbon emission aircraft

Dr Katy Milne, Head of Industrial Strategy – FlyZero, Aerospace Technology Institute

Sustainable aviation, an airport perspective

David Vazquez, Head of Sustainability, London Luton Airport

12.20 – 1.00pm – Session 3: Future of aerospace – Challenges & opportunities as we come out of pandemic

Andrew Mair, CEO, Midlands Aerospace Alliance

Why attend?

  • You’ll find out about local economic priorities for the aerospace sector and the opportunities for ambitious businesses and entrepreneurs
  • You’ll hear from local business support providers and universities who can help you form collaborative partnerships, undertake research and development, access funding and finance and grow skills and talent to support your business
  • You’ll hear from local businesses about their journeys
  • You’ll network with people you could work with


Who is the event for?

This event is for South East Midlands entrepreneurs, businesses and suppliers who are operating or looking for opportunities in the aerospace sector

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