Driving Innovation and Growth Summit


Published on 12 January 2023
Archived on 12 February 2023

Craig Humphrey, Managing Director of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) Growth Hub, with Cllr Tony Jefferson, Leader of Stratford-on-Avon District Council

"Stratford-upon-Avon is renowned throughout the region, the UK and the globe for its tourism sector which is really important since it boosts the area's and the country's economy.

"But there is much more to Stratford's economy than culture and tourism because of the high number of innovative and growing businesses based in south Warwickshire.

"This invitation-only Summit at the University of Warwick Wellesbourne Campus Conference Centre on Friday, February 17 has been organised because we want to focus on the potential of these businesses which are primarily from - but not exclusive to - the automation, AI, and electrification, agri-tech, and the digital and creative industries.  

"Growth is not a rite of passage and needs a collaborative approach to ensure that the tools needed are available to businesses to help them take the next step towards continued expansion.  

"Whilst we have first class innovation assets, we do not feature too well in terms of scaling companies. and despite all the hard work of the business support agencies in the area, there remains stubborn regional disparities.  

"Coventry and Warwickshire is fourth from the bottom of the national league table for scaling companies - and that is a position we hope the Summit will help to change.  

"We need to rise to the challenge of delivering growth in the context of reductions in the public purse and there is scope for the public sector to become ever more creative and develop innovative solutions to the long-standing market failures. That has to be done in partnership with the private sector - and the success of the CWLEP over the last 11 years highlights the importance of this way of working.  

"The three organisations involved in organising this event - Stratford-on-Avon District Council, the Growth Hub, and the University of Warwick - believe it is important that there is a focus on growth because scale up businesses represent only 0.6 per cent of the business base yet contribute 50 per cent of the whole SME economy, generating £1.2trn.  

"From our networking events and meetings, we know that scale up CEOs see local Growth Hubs as a key enabler to access the raft of national resources available and the majority want to be relationship managed by a single point of contact.  

"That has been our business model and we believe this is key to helping to drive forward growth in innovative businesses."

Contact details

Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire,
CV37 6HX
Tel: 01789 267575

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Last updated on 12/01/2023