LONDON, England – Heathrow is to ensure the whole country is ready and able to access the procurement opportunities that come with expansion, through a series of round-table events taking place in every nation and region across Britain.
SME involvement in Heathrow’s supply chain is thriving, driven by massive increases in contracts awarded to them over the past three years. Today, almost half of Heathrow’s Tier 1 suppliers are SMEs compared to just over a third three years ago. The events, announced at the annual ICE Procurement and Supply Chain forum today, are designed to identify the unique sector strengths for each region and ensure Heathrow’s procurement strategy for a third runway is tailored to compliment them – whether in manufacturing, science, innovation or IT.
Heathrow is committed to ensuring more SMEs at all levels of the supply chain and from all parts of the country benefit from its expansion plans. The forums are in addition to the extension of Heathrow’s flagship Summit which takes place at the airport each November. Now entering its 20th year, Heathrow’s annual Business Summit gives SMEs a unique opportunity to engage directly with each other and the airport’s supply chain – enabling the face-to-face interactions that are key to cementing relationships and connecting SMEs to growth opportunities at the airport and around the world.
In March, Heathrow announced the launch of Business Summits in Manchester and Leeds, with SME’s in the Northern Powerhouse to assuming an integral role in delivering an expanded hub on time and on-budget.
Addressing the ICE, Heathrow Executive Director for Procurement Ian Ballentine said:
“A green light for Heathrow expansion would mean the unlocking of billions of pounds worth of contracts to deliver what would be Britain’s largest privately funded infrastructure project. In tandem with our business summits, these procurement forums will ensure the whole of the UK is well-placed to benefit from this opportunity, generating skilled jobs the length and breadth of Britain and helping us to create a world-class hub airport.”