Press release

£90 million boost to aerospace technologies

Aerospace businesses are set to benefit from up to £90 million of overall funding to develop new, advanced technologies

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

  • £50 million competitive fund to encourage aerospace innovation

  • £40 million national supply chain partnership gets the green light

Aerospace businesses are set to benefit from up to £90 million of overall funding to develop new, advanced technologies, Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon will announce today.

Speaking at the Paris Air Show, the minister will unveil plans to hold a competitive call for businesses, through the Technology Strategy Board, for up to £25 million of government funding. This investment will finance collaborative research and technology projects that are consistent with the objectives of the Aerospace Industrial Strategy.

It will be targeted at small and medium-sized aerospace suppliers who will be invited later in the year to submit bids for a share of the fund. The £25 million will be match funded by the winning businesses, creating up to £50 million of total investment.

This will be the first such call utilising some of the £2 billion joint government and industry funding committed to support the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI).

The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), led by the Aerospace Growth Partnership to address skills shortages and improve research and development collaboration, will also be officially launched today after successfully completing due diligence.

This £40 million project is supported by £23 million from the second round of the government’s Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) and £17 million from industry.

Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon said:

We have a world-leading aerospace sector underscored by our ability to excel in areas like research & development. It’s this commitment to innovation through our Aerospace Industrial Strategy that will be a crucial driver for long-term growth.

If we are to get ahead of the game we must create the right conditions now that incentivise businesses to invest in the UK and develop new, exciting products. This new funding will help to do just that and also ensure a high level of quality projects receive the support they need to get off the ground.

The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP) is positive news for UK aerospace, and a further demonstration of government and industry working together to strengthen our supply chains.

Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, said:

The creation of the Aerospace Technology Institute demonstrates the UK’s long term commitment to this key industrial sector. As the UK’s innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board is well placed to manage this first open technology funding competition on behalf of the Aerospace Growth Partnership. The successful projects will help the UK to deliver the leading edge innovation envisaged in the Aerospace Industrial Strategy.

Graham Chisnall, Deputy CEO of aerospace trade organisation ADS. said:

The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme will embed important new technology and capability into the UK supply chain. Helping smaller companies to invest and develop new technologies will help us achieve long term competitive advantage. This funding shows that the work of the Aerospace Growth Partnership is delivering benefits at all levels of the supply chain and closely co-ordinates with the work of the Aerospace Technology Institute.

Notes to editors

1. Aerospace Industrial Strategy

The Aerospace Industrial Strategy can be found at Lifting Off – Implementing the Strategic Vision for UK Aerospace, which was launched on 18 March by the Aerospace Growth Partnership.

The government is committing just over £1 billion over the next seven years to aerospace research through the creation of an Aerospace Technology Institute, which industry has committed to match. The Aerospace Growth Partnership (AGP) brings industry and government together to tackle barriers to growth, boost exports and grow the number of high value jobs in the UK. The AGP is jointly chaired by Michael Fallon, Minister of State at BIS, and Marcus Bryson, CEO of GKN Aerospace and Vice President of ADS.

This is part of a government commitment of nearly £4 billion to back industrial strategy. The government’s Industrial Strategy is about backing the industries of the future, presenting a long-term, whole of government approach to supporting British business, giving them the confidence they need to invest, hire staff and grow. Long-term strategies are being developed in partnership with industry in key sectors.

2. National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme

The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP) is expected to run over four years until 2017. Funded with £23 million from the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) and approximately £17 million from partners, the programme aims to support the development of at least 100 new technologies in the aerospace supply chain.

Particularly, the programme will:

  • Encourage and exploit new product and manufacturing technologies emanating ‘bottom up’ from the UK aerospace supply chain
  • Fund new technologies at small partnerships of SMEs and mid-cap business units with customer participation
  • Solve existing market failures in supply chain communication and supplier R&D management capability, in addition to access to funding.

The leading applicant companies are Aero Engine Controls, Airbus, Bombardier, GKN, Rolls-Royce and Spirit.

The NATEP programme delivery will be managed by ADS and delivered through the UK regional trade association network

3. Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative

Business Secretary Vince Cable announced the creation of the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI) on 6 December 2011. Up to £125 million was made available through the initiative to improve the global competitiveness of UK advanced manufacturing supply chains.

The Chancellor announced an additional £120 million in the Autumn Statement 2012 for two further rounds of AMSCI funding. The competition for Round 4 is already open on the TSB website - the deadline to register is 12 noon on 9 October 2013. To find out more visit

4. Technology Strategy Board

The Technology Strategy Board is the UK’s innovation agency. Its goal is to accelerate economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation. Sponsored by BIS, the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy. For more information visit

5. ADS

ADS is the premier trade organisation for all companies operating in the UK Aerospace, Defence, Security and Space sectors. Farnborough International Limited (FIL) which runs the Farnborough International Air Show, is a wholly owned subsidiary. For more information see

8.The government’s economic policy objective is to achieve ‘strong, sustainable and balanced growth that is more evenly shared across the country and between industries’. It set four ambitions in the ‘Plan for Growth’ (PDF 1.7MB), published at Budget 2011:

  • to create the most competitive tax system in the G20
  • to make the UK the best place in Europe to start, finance and grow a business
  • to encourage investment and exports as a route to a more balanced economy
  • to create a more educated workforce that is the most flexible in Europe.

Work is underway across government to achieve these ambitions, including progress on more than 250 measures as part of the Growth Review. Developing an Industrial Strategy gives new impetus to this work by providing businesses, investors and the public with more clarity about the long-term direction in which the government wants the economy to travel.

Published 17 June 2013