Benefits for Members
By gathering together as a select group of SME’s and relevant associates, the Group is able to explore opportunities for joint ventures, new applications for technology and new markets as well as exploring opportunities for IPR protection etc. The potential additional opportunities perceived (apart from the obvious) include:
- Exploring new markets both within and outside the UK where the Group acts as an ambassador for all companies within the group.
- In addition, linking with supporting companies such as Harrison Clark Rickerbys provides access to their in-house patent attorneys, as well as corporate lawyers experienced in creating joint venture vehicles and commercial lawyers well versed in a range of sale and supply contracts for both domestic and international trade, as well as commercial exploitation and licensing of IP.
- Opportunities to trade through a vehicle created by the consortium itself, with potential cost and tax benefits.
- Similar savings in relation to general and legal expenses insurance as well as other risks.
- Opportunities to obtain preferential prices from engineers and suppliers, based upon volume of trade, and access to funding.
- There are opportunities to market to lucrative international buyers, that individual businesses may not be able to access working alone.
- Some members may have List X status, and others not. Individually, they may not have the resources to enable them to tender for MoD and other public procurement contracts. In combination (either as a consortium or ad hoc combinations of members in a JV) the required criteria can be more easily achieved, to enable SMEs to contract directly with HMG (rather than just as part of the supply chain to a prime contractor).
- Access to Harrison Clark Rickerbys’s network of clients and associates, including VCs and local banks with a track record of investment in new technology.
Members are invited to submit material to HCR for inclusion in the firm’s defence and security newsletter entitled “Incoming” distributed to 500+ contacts in the industry nationally and internationally. The material can be about current R&D, to promote joint venture opportunities, seek partnerships, or anything else of relevance.
A significant long term aim of HSDG is to secure external funding to enable the retention of a full time chief executive.
The role of the CEO will be to identify the opportunities for members, recognising the fact that the interests of those engaged in security are different to those engaged in defence.
For the defence sector, spending time at Abbey Wood, talking to project managers about scheduled future projects and identifying tender opportunities would be a significant activity.
For those in the security industry, identifying commercial opportunities in the UK and abroad would be a key part of the role.
The potential market
According to UKTI, there are 120 companies in Herefordshire directly engaged in the security and defence industries, with a further 100 involved in the supply chain, ranging from sole traders to multi-nationals.
Most of the businesses fit the definition of SME’s.
The initial membership of HSDG comprises 12 of these companies.
In 2016, HSDG aims to increase its membership to 50 companies.
By assisting member companies to gain new business via:
- consortium tenders
- joint ventures
- exploiting export opportunities
HSDG aims to create new jobs, as member companies recruit staff to service new business. HSDG is well placed to support the recruitment process, via its Resettlement Programme with the military, and consultation with X-Forces and Herefordshire University.