A review of the internationally-recognised UK Motorsport Valley business cluster, launched today by Rt. Hon Michael Fallon Minister of State for Business, reported a strong ‘bounce back’ since the recessionary period of 2008 and 2009, with continuous growth every year since, to reach the highest sales level in its illustrious history.
According to the review, which was commissioned by the Motorsport Industry Association (MIA) and supported by the industry, The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) and UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) , this thriving sector had, by 2012, achieved annual sales of £9 billion. This significant turnover was generated by some 4300 companies, employing 41,000 people supplying the world with world-class high-performance engineering products and motorsport services.
A high level of investment in R&D, with many firms spending more than 25 percent of their annual turnover and benefitting from R&D tax credits, was said to be vital to this success, as were the high calibre of employees, and exports, with nearly 90 percent of the companies selling overseas.
Highly valuable, international Formula One teams, supported by their outstanding UK supply chain, continue to choose Motorsport Valley as their primary location. Eight out of eleven teams did so in 2013, and this sub-set of the wider UK motorsport sector employs more than 5000 highly skilled individuals and delivers more than £2 billion each year, in revenues.
A growing number of companies reported success from offering their race-hardened capability and expertise to adjacent sectors, particularly with energy efficient, low carbon solutions. The resurgent UK automotive industry and defence too, require fast response from these innovative, R&D-based, prototype specialists. This valuable motorsport resource is unique to Britain.
Business Minister Michael Fallon said: "Our motorsport industry represents some of the best of British talent and ingenuity and it is imperative that we provide the right conditions so it continues to thrive. That is why we are investing £1 billion jointly with industry to ensure companies across the automotive sector have the support they need to develop the technologies of the future."
Chris Aylett, CEO of the MIA added: “British motorsport companies are proven world champions. Highly-publicised victories on race tracks around the world are a strong promotion for this ‘jewel in the crown’ of UK advanced engineering. At last, the expertise of these companies is being more widely recognised and valued by other industries. Every race or rally is won by the team which uses its energy resource most efficiently, and now this capability is bringing new business to this sector.”