Agenda and minutes

Business Innovation and Growth Panel
Tuesday, 27th November, 2018 2.00 pm

Venue: Room 404, Wellington House, 40-50 Wellington Street, Leeds

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Roy Miller, John Dawson, Tim Swift, Andrew Lee and also from Simon Wright, Lee Savage and Martin Booth.



Declarations of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests


The Chair disclosed that his company, Reliance Precision, had applied for an Access Innovation grant.


Exempt Information - Possible Exclusion of the Press and Public


There were no items on the agenda requiring the exclusion of the press and public.


Minutes of the Meeting of the Business Innovation and Growth Panel held on 13 September 2018 pdf icon PDF 125 KB


It was noted that Marie Gilluley was in attendance at the Business Innovation and Growth Panel held on the 13 September.


Resolved: That the minutes of the Business Innovation and Growth Panel held on the 13 September be approved.


Chair's Update


The Chair updated the Panel regarding the outcome of the LEP review. The Leeds City Region Enterprise partnership and part of the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding LEP had agreed to merge. It was noted that Barnsley was expected to remain with the Sheffield City Region LEP while East Riding will remain with the Humber LEP.


The Chair also welcomed the Channel 4 announcement regarding the relocation of their headquarters to Leeds. The Chair noted the support across the districts for the bid and the strength and diversity of the Higher Education and Further education offer. The Chair requested regular updates to the Panel as part of an inward investment item.


The Panel also noted the #bestofallworlds marketing campaign and it was suggested that the images could be circulated to members.


Innovation Support Programmes pdf icon PDF 134 KB


The Panel considered a report which provided an update on the Access Innovation programme.


The Panel was also informed of a potential successor programme, with a working title of ‘Connecting Innovation’, currently in development.


It was proposed that this programme would broaden the scope of Access Innovation. An outline business case had been submitted to the European Regional Development Fund. Members were asked to provide input on the development of the Connecting Innovation programme, which will be used to inform the Full Business Case when it is submitted later in 2019. The Panel noted the memorandum of understanding with InnovateUK and the agreement to cooperate in the design of Connecting Innovation.


Resolved: That the BIG Panel notes progress to date on Access Innovation and provides feedback on the proposed Connecting Innovation programme.




Preparing for Brexit pdf icon PDF 110 KB

Additional documents:


The Panel considered a report which provided an economic update and outlined the ongoing work in the City Region as the UK prepares to leave the EU.


The Panel discussed the challenges and opportunities and suggested that business support information to help businesses prepare for Brexit could be repackaged and made available to business, including through the LEP website and via key partners, including Chambers of Commerce. The Panel was also updated on some of the current and planned support for businesses related to Brexit, including the work of the Investor Development Team and the future Business Resilience project.


Resolved: That the Panel notes the analysis presented in the economic update and dashboard and the actions detailed in the paper in response to Brexit.


MIT REAP pdf icon PDF 110 KB


The Panel was provided with a verbal update regarding the University of Leeds led Massachusetts Institute of Technology Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration (MIT REAP) programme.


The Panel was informed that MIT REAP was a two year programme designed to promote innovation driven entrepreneurship. The next steps for MIT REAP included stakeholder engagement, data gathering and developing a baseline in order to measure progress.


The Panel asked to be provided with regular updates on MIT REAP’s progress over the two years.


Resolved: That BIG Panel note the contents of the verbal update by Professor Lisa Roberts.


Supply Chains pdf icon PDF 127 KB


The Panel was provided with a presentation by Steve Gregory, Head of Regional Engagement at Huddersfield University regarding the new supply chains support programme. The programme offers guidance and support for SMEs to improve their supply chain performance.


The Panel provided feedback on the programme, welcomed the support to be made available, and requested future updates. Steve Gregory requested ongoing input and support, including introductions to large enterprises that want to improve their supply chains.


Resolved: That the Panel notes the research and project delivery activity set out in the report.


Digital Framework pdf icon PDF 145 KB

Additional documents:


The Panel was updated on the development of the Leeds City Region Digital Framework following an extensive consultation exercise. This feedback was included in the report and incorporated into the revised Digital Framework.


Working groups will be established to ensure that the aspirations of the Digital Framework are realised. The working groups which will report to the Business Innovation and Growth Panel are as follows:


·         Digital opportunities for all businesses

·         Digital sector

·         Tech for good


Resolved: That the Panel endorses the overarching outcomes and principles of the Digital Framework. 


Trade and Investment pdf icon PDF 118 KB

Additional documents:


The Panel was updated on the work of the Trade and Investment team including their work involving investment development. Meetings had been held with 40 foreign owned companies and 26 direct investment proposals had been identified.


The Panel again welcomed the achievement in securing the Channel 4 National HQ and also noted the opportunities for further inward investment across the districts. It was also reported that UKTV planned to open an office in Leeds. 


The Panel noted and discussed the priorities for trade and investment flagged for in the report for 2019/20 which included an increased focus on international trade with China and India.


Resolved: That the BIG Panel notes the report and welcomes the collective achievement in securing the Channel 4 National HQ.







Business Support pdf icon PDF 253 KB

Additional documents:


The Panel considered a report which provided an update on business support activity. It was reported that the service had supported over 10,000 businesses since its launch in July 2015. The Panel was also informed that the Productivity Pilot opened on 17 September 2018 and was set to close on 14 December 2018 with a number of applications already received.


The Panel noted that the Inclusive Growth commitments went live on 31 July 2018 for new applicants to the Business Growth Programme. It was reported that of the 26 grant approvals so far, 87% had committed to paying the Real Living Wage or above. A review of the new approach will take place in February 2019 with findings reported to the Panel later in 2019. 


Resolved: That the Panel notes the progress made to date on delivery of the above business support projects, programmes and services.