A new 100,000-unit electric motor production facility for YASA, thriving electric motor manufacturer and University of Oxford spinout, is being opened today by the Business Secretary Greg Clark.
An Oxford university spin-out founded in 2009, YASA has received extensive government support and investment for its development through auto programmes including the Advanced Propulsion Centre, Innovate UK and Regional Growth Fund. The company is now established as a world-leading electric motor manufacturer with 80% of its production destined for export across the world, including China.
In his speech at the opening of the new site, which will support 150 high-skilled jobs, the Business Secretary also announced, as part of the Industrial Strategy, a significant government investment of £184 million for 41 UK Universities to help train the next generation of world-class engineers and exceptional scientists at British universities. The announcement follows the launch of the government’s Year of Engineering campaign in January, a year-long campaign to tackle the engineering skills gap and widen the pool of young people who join the profession.
The money will support Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTP’s) that fund four-year doctoral studentships, providing UK and international students at British universities with PhD training in science, engineering and mathematics. The DTPs will support students entering training in the academic years beginning October 2018 and October 2019.
Investment in training future engineers and scientists will help deliver the ambitious vision set out in the government’s Industrial Strategy which aims to make the UK the most innovative economy in the world and build a Britain fit for the future through a stronger, fairer economy with ‘good work’, high-quality infrastructure and businesses that can lead the world in high-tech, highly-skilled industries.
Business Secretary Greg Clark said: “Innovation is the lifeblood of our Industrial Strategy and our economy. This spirit is embodied by YASA, a thriving business that has emerged from one of our finest academic institutions and is now helping to deliver the UK’s ambition to lead the world in meeting the Grand Challenges presented by Clean Growth and Future of Mobility.
“Through our Industrial Strategy, we are helping businesses and our world-leading researchers turn incredible ideas into scale-up products and services that are available to everyone.
“Government investment in programmes that have supported YASA have helped propel this company forward. The factory I will be opening today is testimony to what can be achieved through our industrial approach, when academia, government and industry come together.”
YASA’s electric motors will help deliver on the Government’s ambition, through the Automotive Sector Deal, to be at the forefront of the electric vehicle production, powering the next generation of innovative, environmentally-friendly vehicles, with leading auto companies like Jaguar using YASA motors to give its models like the C-X-75 the speed of a Bugatti Veyron but the emissions of a Toyota Prius.
The Government’s vision for its Industrial Strategy sets out four Grand Challenges – major global trends that the UK will face in the next decade – including Clean Growth and Future of Mobility. Each Grand Challenge represents an opportunity for the UK to establish itself as a world-leader at the forefront of the future industries that will drive these trends.
The new production facility, and the environmentally friendly engines it produces, will help the UK to meet the challenges presented by the Future of Mobility and by Clean Growth and ensure the UK is capitalising fully on the economic opportunities offered by the global shift to low-carbon economies and the increased demand for electric and hybrid auto technologies.
Chris Harris, YASA’s CEO said: “YASA is a great example of what the UK can and should expect to achieve if we invest in the innovative and creative ideas emerging from our best universities and have the determination and patience to turn those great ideas into world-beating companies.
“With the right support and investment, companies like YASA can become the powerhouse of the UK’s future economy, creating a wide range of high-skilled jobs and benefiting the communities of which they are a part.”