Representatives from 200 supply chain companies in Tees Valley have been given the inside track on contract opportunities that will be generated by two of the UK’s most significant rail projects.
They attended an executive briefing where presentations were given by key executives connected with the high speed rail project, HS2 and Crossrail, the 100 kilometre railway line under construction in London and surrounding areas.
The breakfast event was hosted by Tees Valley Unlimited in partnership with Teesside Engineering Network (TEN).
The keynote speakers comprised:
- Joanna Sloane, HS2 Supply Chain Manager, who presented a project overview including the contract opportunities, tendering timetables, and how potential suppliers can identify business opportunities.
- Mark Lomas, HS2 Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) outlined its approach to EDI and what this means for suppliers.
- Simon Pain, Crossrail Principal Programme Supply Chain Manager, covered the many remaining opportunities that will be generated by the mechanical and electrical and station fit-out elements. Crossrail’s main contractors need to recruit a range of specialists to enable the creation of a functional railway ready for Crossrail’s opening from 2017.
Delegates also were able to speak directly to the speakers during a Q&A session.
Joanna Sloane said: “We want to engage as many businesses as possible from across the UK to put them in the best position possible to compete for the opportunities offered by HS2 as part of a fair, transparent and open procurement process.”
She added: “The high volume of sign-ups to this event shows that businesses are taking the right approach towards the procurement opportunities of HS2. “
Simon Pain said: “It has always been important for Crossrail to engage with potential supply chain members, especially SMEs, in order to highlight the opportunities that are available in huge programmes like Crossrail. Working with bodies like Tees Valley Unlimited gives us exactly that opportunity.”
He added: “We want as many competent suppliers as possible to know about Crossrail contracts and have the opportunity to go for them. It’s good for Crossrail and good for UK Plc to have a healthy mix of companies of various sizes and from different regions. This is part of our work towards promoting greater economic sustainability.”
The briefing was told that Crossrail’s contractors still have mechanical and electrical equipment to procure.
Cllr Bill Dixon, Leader of Darlington Council and Leadership Board member at Tees Valley Unlimited, the Local Enterprise Partnership for Tees Valley, said: “The well-attended executive briefing provided the ideal platform for Tees Valley businesses to learn directly about the substantial contract opportunities associated with two of the UK’s biggest transport infrastructure investments.
“There are companies in Tees Valley that have the skills and ability to contribute to the delivery of HS2 and Crossrail and it is important for them to be made aware of the business potential and how they can bid for contracts.”
Rob Johnson, Director of Axiom Engineering Associates Ltd, one of the TEN founders, said: “The briefing was a fantastic forum for delegates to learn directly from and engage with executives associated with two major rail projects.
“One of TEN’s aims is to provide an arena where larger companies can showcase their vision and present their supply chain needs to let Tees Valley firms know how they can win work from large scale regeneration and infrastructure development schemes.”