Jaguar Land Rover welcomes government funding for UK auto sector skills

– Jaguar Land Rover plays central role in developing Automotive Council UK skills initiative;

– Underscores company’s commitment to investing in supply chain skills;

– Will benefit UK automotive supply chain;

– £11.3 million government funding; £19.1 million auto industry investment.

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Coventry, U.K., 21 January, 2015 —— Jaguar Land Rover welcomes the announcement by Business Secretary Vince Cable of £11.3 million government funding for an Automotive Council UK skills development initiative.  The financing matches £19.1 million automotive industry investment in a series of cross-sector programmes that will inspire the next generation of vehicle makers and create new routes into automotive careers.

The initiative has been developed by the Automotive Council, a joint UK government-industry association, and will introduce a range of programmes that will benefit all companies in the UK automotive supply chain.  Manufacturers will work together to identify and meet the sector’s skills needs, create an industry-standard jobs framework and ensure the UK automotive industry is in pole position for future growth.  Young people will also gain first-hand experience of the industry in action, inspiring future generations of engineers and technicians.

Jaguar Land Rover’s head of Technical Excellence, Jo Lopes, chairs the Automotive Council’s Industrial Partnership and has played a central role in driving the work, which will help ensure the future competitiveness of the UK automotive industry.

Commenting on the announcement, Jo Lopes said:  “The Automotive Industrial Partnership brings together industry’s employers on an unprecedented scale.  By working collaboratively and taking an innovative and sector-wide approach, we are ensuring that the UK’s automotive sector can grow and retain the skills talent that is so vital for the industry’s continued success.”

He continued: “Jaguar Land Rover is committed to investing in skills, both in terms of our own workforce, and also through our wider work with the Automotive Council, government, skills agencies and our suppliers.   Innovative approaches such as the initiative announced today are vital in enabling UK manufacturing to grow and compete globally.”

Jaguar Land Rover is at the heart of the renaissance of UK manufacturing, having invested over £10 billion, doubled its workforce to 32 thousand and more than doubled its sales over the past five years.  Earlier this month it announced the creation of an additional 1,300 jobs at its Solihull plant to support further development of lightweight vehicle technologies.

The company is investing in people for its own future, including its award-winning and well-established Intermediate, Advanced and Higher apprenticeship and graduate programmes.  Indeed, over the past four years Jaguar Land Rover has recruited some 2,000 people to its graduate programme and Advanced and Higher apprenticeships.

Jaguar Land Rover’s investment in people also extends to the wider automotive supply chain and the company has set up a team to work closely with its supply chain on wider skills development.  In addition to implementing a training programme to upskill its own employees, for example, it has extended this to its suppliers.  This includes expanding its ‘Advanced Skills Accreditation Scheme’ to its suppliers to allow their employees to access MSc level training modules at leading UK universities.

The company also encourages more talented young people to aspire to careers in engineering and manufacturing, engaging with more than 320,000 every year through a range of education initiatives to inspire the next generation of engineers.

Jaguar Land Rover

– Jaguar Land Rover is a strong, healthy and vibrant company, well positioned strategically and financially for sustainable growth.

– Over-proportionally investing, the company will spend £3.5 – £3.7 billion on new product creation and capital expenditure in its financial year ending 31st March 2015 and has invested a total of over £10 billion in the last five years.

– The company plans 50 product actions over the next five years, of which twelve will be in 2015 alone.

– Jaguar Land Rover’s products are in high demand around the globe.  Its sales have more than doubled since 2009: in 2014 the company retailed 462,678 vehicles, a nine per cent increase on 2013.

– Jaguar Land Rover’s turnover almost trebled in four years to £19.4 billion in the financial year ending 31st March 2014, with a Profit Before Tax of £2.5 billion. 

– The company’s headcount has doubled over the past few years to more than 32,000 globally, of which 30,500 are in the UK.

– The 1,300 jobs announced for Solihull in January 2015 are in addition to the 1,700 created in 2013 for the introduction of the Jaguar XE.   

– Last year, Jaguar Land Rover opened its Engine Manufacturing Centre at Wolverhampton, UK, a £500 million investment, which will employ 1,400 when operating at full capacity.

– Over 50% of Jaguar Land Rover’s components by value are supplied from the UK

– The £11.3 million government funding for the automotive industry skills project comes from the Employer Ownership Pilot, a £340 million competitive fund that invited employers to tell government how they would better use public investment, alongside their own, to invest in the skills of their current and future workforce in order to grow the economy.

– This is matched by the automotive sector with £19.1 million of its own resources (£16.4 million in kind and £2.8 million cash).

About the Automotive Council:

The United Kingdom Automotive Council was established in December 2009. It is a joint UK government-industry organisation that is tasked with establishing the UK automotive sector as a world leader.

The Automotive Council aims to:

– Create a transformed business environment for the automotive industry in the UK to provide a more compelling investment proposition for related industries;

– Develop further the technology roadmaps for low carbon vehicles and fuels, and exploit opportunities to promote the UK as a strong candidate to develop these and other technologies;

– Develop a stronger and more competitive automotive supply chain;

– Provide a stronger public voice for the industry to support the value of the industry to the UK and to global partners;

– Ensure a strategic, continuous conversation between Government and the automotive industry in the UK.

[Source : Jaguar Land Rover]

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