September 2021


A round up of latest news in brief...

Conference and exhibition sector sees activity levels return

Business in the conference and exhibition sector has returned to pre-pandemic levels in Coventry and Warwickshire, according to three of the region’s leading venues. Coombe Abbey Hotel, Coventry Building Society Arena and Warwick Conferences all echo that there is a renewed confidence in the sector in the region as enquiries are up at the venues for business events of all sizes. The region’s largest venue is Coventry Building Society Arena and its main exhibition hall is currently running at over 90 per cent in occupancy – and is forecasting the same business levels as 2019.

Sales and employment grow at Atherstone-based Aldi Stores

Aldi plans to create 2,000 jobs next year as part of a £1.3bn investment plan. The German-owned retail giant will add 100 stores to its portfolio as well as a 1.3m sq ft logistics hub in Leicestershire. The news come as profits fell as the firm by 2.5% to £264.8m last year, but sales hit a new record of £13.51bn.

Strong growth at automotive software company Eatron

Software developer and supplier based in Warwick has more than quadrupled its workforce in the last eight months thanks to strong global demand for its services. Eatron Technologies, based at the University of Warwick Science Park’s Warwick Innovation Centre, has grown its UK workforce from six before Christmas 2020 to 25 now.

Profits rise at dealer group Rybrook

Pre-tax profits have risen at Warwick-based new and used car retailer group despite turnover dropping by more than £150m as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Rybrook developed its portfolio during the year, with a new Volvo dealership opening in Preston and its Stoke Land Rover business relocating to a new purpose-built premises. Additionally, the Lotus brand was added to the group's multi-franchise locations in Birmingham and Bristol.

Architects award for major automotive R&D building

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has revealed the 54 winners of the 2021 RIBA National Awards for architecture, which includes the Professor Lord Bhattacharyya building, home to NAIC (National Automotive Innovation Centre) at WMG, University of Warwick. The NAIC is a partnership between WMG, University of Warwick, Jaguar Land Rover, and Tata Motors, and is the largest of its kind in Europe and is well timed, arriving when a global mobility revolution is underway, with a new age for transport mobility.

Local games studio director wins award

Games maker Sumo Leamington’s Operations Director, Harinder Sangha, has been crowned ‘Best Boss’ at the games industry’s 2021 GI.Biz Best Places to Work awards. Harinder, who began working for Sumo Leamington in 2019, beat competition from five international brands including PlayStation and Rare to be crowned ‘Best Boss’ at the awards which took place virtually.

Computing skills in high demand at WCG

Local college group WCG is seeing heightened interest in its business and computing degree courses thanks to high demand from employers. These include BA Business and Management, BSc Computing Networks and Cyber Security and FdA Digital Media Content and are run out of the college group’s Royal Leamington Spa College.

Emperor moves to Warwick

An employee-owned creative agency has moved into new offices at Warwick Technology Park. Emperor, which specialises in strategic communications and works with clients such as Greggs and Lloyds Banking Group, has moved into new facilities at the Innovation Centre, which is part of University of Warwick’s Science Park. The offices will be used as a creative hub, alongside its other bases in London, Edinburgh, Manchester and Dubai. Following a restructure of the business, the firm has closed offices in Birmingham and Bicester to move into the Warwick hub.

Local support unlocks growth for Percuro

A sustainable pet food brand has secured contracts with retailers in the UK and globally six months after securing support funding. Percuro Primal Pet Food Ltd, which has its headquarters in Henley-in-Aden in Warwickshire, secured funding from the European Regional Development Fund through the Innovate EDGE UK Proof-of-Concept programme, which is provided by Coventry University. The support enabled Percuro to carry out a full feasibility study for the product through consumer research among pet owners in the UK and Germany.


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