Around 300 of the world’s leading subcontractors will be showcasing their capabilities at Subcon from 2nd to 4th June at the NEC, Birmingham.

Subcon provides the UK’s foremost showcase of companies offering contract and subcontract manufacturing services and runs alongside the Advanced Manufacturing Show and a new event focused on design and product development, The Engineer Design & Innovation Show.

Together the three shows will provide a focal point for engineering-based manufacturing in the UK across all sectors and disciplines.

The increasingly buoyant manufacturing sector is reflected in the growing strength of the Subcon show, which this year features many new and returning exhibitors.

Subcon is the UK’s only event that is completely focused on contract and subcontract manufacturing, including machining, moulding, fabrication, electronics assembly, finishing and treatments.

The solid core of the Subcon show is its UK exhibitors, who make up over three-quarters of the exhibitors. Subcon also offers access to global markets, with fifteen overseas countries represented in 2015, including pavilions for Denmark, Portugal, Italy, Hungary, China, India, Spain, Ukraine, Latvia and Taiwan, as well as individual exhibitors from Belgium, the USA, Greece, Slovenia and The Republic of Ireland.

Special features at Subcon this year include an Advisory Drop-In Centre where visitors will be able to get help with issues relating to their business such as exporting and access to finance. Participants include Lloyds Bank, the Business Growth Service, the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, the EIA and international trade advisers. An Innovation Hub will showcase innovation in action and give visitors the chance to talk to companies that have successfully built their business by innovating and learn from their experience. Participants include The National Graphene Institute and BLOODHOUND SSC.

Visitors to Subcon can also take part in the free-to-attend Engineer Conference. This brings together top speakers from industry and academia to examine the hot topics and key issues facing manufacturing companies. Speakers come from leading organisations including The Manufacturing Technology Centre, Jaguar Land Rover, Airbus Defence & Space, the High Value Manufacturing Catapult and the AMRC. Showcase sessions will feature the project to recreate an iconic Bugatti plane and the Rosetta space mission. 

Exhibitors at Subcon include the Midlands Assembly Network, Lipco, WEC Group, Tata Steel, Gee Graphite, Tridan, Muller England and Mini Gears.

Manufacturing technology showcase

Following its successful launch in 2013, the Advanced Manufacturing Show returns to the NEC alongside Subcon.

Featuring over 50 manufacturers and suppliers of advanced production engineering technology, the show highlights the critical advanced manufacturing technologies that UK companies need to invest in to stay ahead of the game in international markets.

These include machining and turning centres, sheet-metal working, metrology, tooling, work-holding and CAD/CAM software.

The show will feature live machining demonstrations and new product launches highlighting the technologies that UK companies need to stay ahead of the game in international markets.

Exhibitors include XYZ Machine Tools, Matsuura, Delcam, Renishaw, Hexagon Metrology, FARO, Kasto and Trumpf.

Nigel Atherton, Managing Director of XYZ Machine Tools, said: “We had a very positive response at the last Advanced Manufacturing Show in 2013 and this encouraged us to rebook for 2015, when we will have new products to exhibit, such as the innovative XYZ 2-OP portable vertical machining centre. Since its launch it has been very well-received and the audience at the Advanced Manufacturing Show should recognise the potential that it brings in terms of reduced manufacturing costs through efficient use of labour.”

Visitors to the Advanced Manufacturing Show can also attend free conference sessions specifically dedicated to advanced manufacturing technology. Presentation topics include Industry 4.0, the factory of the future, additive manufacturing and the project to build Britain’s new aircraft carriers.

Everything for the design engineer

The Advanced Manufacturing Show runs alongside Subcon and a new event, The Engineer Design & Innovation Show. This focuses on everything an engineering designer needs to do their job: from high-end products and services used to realize their concepts – such as new design software and 3D printing – to the components, materials and innovative technologies that go into these next-generation products.

Exhibitors at The Engineer Design & Innovation Show include Warwick Manufacturing Group, Proto Labs, JMP (Division of SAS Software), Panasonic Electric Works, Laser Lines, Spaceclaim Corporation and Tharsus.

Pam Robson, Head of Marketing at Tharsus, adds: “We work with customers to develop, manage and manufacture products that make it to the market and sell.

“Our service covers the entire process of taking a product to market and we believe that having all of this capability under one roof is faster, more efficient and has less risk than other, more traditional methods. 

“The co-location of the Design and Innovation show with Subcon is particularly relevant to us as our capability covers all aspects of the product development process from design through to manufacture.