Category Archives: high value manufacturing


Who should attend Cambridge Graphene Days 2015? 5-6 November

Booking online | Info | Why attend? Please call Maya on +44 1223 303500 for help booking and service.

Top 12 Reasons

1 Anyone with an interest in traction of business involving Graphene and GRMs

2 Anyone wishing to understand barriers to adoption and use of Graphene & GRMs

3 Anyone on a science and technology watching brief for Graphene and GRMs

4 Anyone with a startup or entrepreneurial idea for Graphene or GRMs

5 Anyone with business problems to solve that might be influenced or helped by Graphene or GRMs

6 Those wishing to understand the full uptodate and prioritised range of applications and those nearer to and further from market

7 Anyone wanting to get an IPR landscape & investment level update for Graphene and GRMs

8 Anyone wanting to meet new industrial and business entrants into the Graphene and GRM areas

9 People wanting to build quality networks or ecosystems in this set of fields

10 Sector specific players seeking to access solution providers

11 Solutions providers seeking to understand customer pull in a range of sectors

12 Those in related areas of technology such as nanotech, IoT, cleantech who wish to see the potential and synergies with Graphene and GRMs

Booking online | Info | Why attend? Please call Maya on +44 1223 303500 for help booking and service.


HVM Graphene+ 2014: from research events to a grounded applications business event

Quick Links: Conference Home | Brochure | Bookings | Detailed Info | Speaker Biographies and Synopses

The Oxford 15 May edition of HVM Graphene+ 2014 is looking a delicious lineup of highly interesting and grounded talks by a dozen entrepreneurial and large player speakers.

There will be less hype about graphene and less naiveté about its automatic dominance. It will be challenged by the full gamut of functional materials, their pricing strategies, manufacturing utilities and applications.

So join us on 15 May – we are already more than half full, bookings are flowing in from senior and eminent guests, and the event is set to bring together some really interesting people.

Book now – speaking roles are complete. But places & exhibition stand positions in great positions for this conference are now limited & continue at lower cost!

Best wishes

CIR Team 2014

01223 303500

Quick Links: Conference Home | Brochure | Bookings | Detailed Info | Speaker Biographies and Synopses

HVM Graphene Conference Cambridge 2013 Programme Lineup!

HVMG13 Information | Bookings

Programme for 5 November 2013 HVMG Conference


Opening Session – Introduction & Graphene Basics: Functional Materials
10:00 Mike McCreary, Director, CIR Strategy
- Conference introduction
10:05 Professor Peter Dobson, Oxford University Nanomaterials – Chairman’s Introduction
10:20 Prof Andrea Ferrari, Cambridge University 
& Head, Cambridge Graphene Centre
Overview of the Applications of Graphene
10:35 Dr Patrick Frantz, CEO, Cambridge Graphene Platform
Low Cost Graphene & 2D Layered Material Inks for Printed Electronics
10:50 Dr Steve Thomas, CIT Ltd
Conductive materials – market uses & experiences
11:05 Panel with speakers & moderator & Prof Johnny Coleman Trinity College Dublin
11:30 Coffee break
Session 2 – Additive manufacturing, electronics, photonics
11:50 Dr Mike Banach, VP, Plastic Logic
Shaping the next industrial revolution
12:05 Dr David Brown, CTO, Canatu
Scaling of Carbon NanoBud film production for commercial apps in touch and display devices
12:20 Dr Richard van Rijn, CTO, Applied Nanolayers
High volume quality manufacture of graphene
12:30 Dr Kate Stone, Novalia
Creative printed electronics
12:35 Peter Towler, Director, BritonEMS part of OSI Electronics – What to expect from an EMS Supplier

12:40 Panel with Moderator Professor Ferrari & Dr Rob Harvey, AtomJet

13:05 Lunch and Exhibitions
Session 3 – Commercialisation Cases & other materials & applications
14:05 Dr Krzysztof Koziol, Chief Scientist, Cambridge Nanosystems Ltd
14:15 Professor Jonathan Coleman,
Layered materials: from tiny things to advanced applications
14:30 Professor Richard Palmer, Founder, Nanoscale Labs, Birmingham University
Prospects for massive scale-up from nano research in biochips & catalysis
14:50 Dr Nathan Hill, Strategy Director, National Graphene Institute – Commercialisation strategies

15:10 Panel with Moderator Del Stark CEO, Nanopro

15:30 Tea break
Final Session – Strategy for UK HVM & Graphene
16:00 Dr Jani Kivioja, Head, Nokia Research Center
Graphene – What is the commercial viability of short term applications?
16:30 Nick Coutts MA; Former IBM VP, CIR Strategy
Routes to Value for Graphene
16:40 Dr Martin Kemp, NanoKTN
Graphene commercialisation – Summary of industry consultation workshops
16:55 Professor Sir Michael Gregory CBE, Head, IfM
High Value Manufacturing Roadmaps
17:05 Panel with Professor Sir Mike Gregory CBE; Chairman’s Summary
17:30 Networking & Drinks Reception

Please contact 01223 303500 to speak to the organiser of HVMG13 directly.


High Value Manufacturing Conference 10th Anniversary: Highlights of a memorable day

Conference homepage | Organiser Homepage | HVM10th Speaker Biographies | HVM10th legacy page

The feedback from senior delegates at the HVM Conference on 14 November was very positive, praising the quality of speakers, networking, business development value, and briefing content.

Summary of HVM 10th Anniversary Conference

The day began with a short talk from HVM strategy consultant and organiser Dr Justin Hayward in which he noted that Britain was on top of the world when it came to countries with over 10 Olympic Gold-medal per million inhabitants scores. This has been effected through lottery-funding, a form of funding that is effective and voluntary.

Justin also argued the points that government spending in the UK has been rising since World War II to a level well over 40% of GDP, and that this may be resulting in difficulties with releasing the potential of HVM from the UK.

Justin went on to note that the private sector has been becoming more confident in difficult times as it struggles to enable earlier-stage HVMs to find funding and grow without government intervention or bank or financial VC finance, instead working with angels, angel groups, superangels, corporate investors, large channel customers and crowdfunding while adapting business models so as to reduce the level of funding needed before testing the market.

Professor Sir Mike Gregory CBE, Head, IfM opened the conference as chairman that “manufacturing was back in fashion”. Sir Mike was upbeat in his appraisal of developments around HVM by the private sector in partnership with the government through the seven centres of the HVM catapult, which cover half of the 22 British competences listed in Sir Mike’s IfM report for the TSB in 2012.

After Sir Mike the audience enjoyed hearing from Will Barton, TSB Head of Manufacturing, details of the success story of Oxford Catalysts, going from an idea around Fischer Tropfe processes for production of clean energy and difficulties to a globally operating company in eight years.

Following this, Phil O’Donovan, a well-known entrepreneur and co-founder of CSR plc, discussed the fabless manufacturing business model and how this enables companies to scale yet keep on top of design and required in-house expertise as returns were to be dealt with by CSR rather than the manufacturer. Phil also said that tax for SMEs should be simple, founder-friendly, staff-friendly and stable, a comment which received nods of approval from many. He noted that the high growth “CSR ignored government and eventually they ignored CSR plc too”. CSR plc quickly went to over 1000 staff and became the market leader in bluetooth with a USD1 billion plus market valuation.

Sir Robin Saxby was next up, in a fantastic opening session. Sir Robin showed the now-famous “SWOT” analysis slide of the ARM business in 1990, at which point it consisted just of the 11 engineer founders and Sir Robin. Given ARM’s dominance now, the SWOT’s contents are an obvious source of great humour! But the point was made strongly that startups should take such analyses seriously. He discussed how SMEs can learn from larger customers’ needs. Startups, he asserted, should try to hire the best team and advisors as soon as possible and motivate themselves through share options in the company. Sir Robin finished by talking briefly about some of the technology startups he has invested in.

Plastic Logic, one of the headline sponsors of the 10th Anniversary HVM Conference, were represented by their new CEO Indro Mukerjee. Indro talked about the industrial revolution that is 3D printing, and noted that Plastic Logic was moving out of stealth mode.

Tonejet, another headline sponsor, spoke through CEO Ray Southam of their successes in bringing from invention to market the world’s first full colour photographic-quality digital can printer, with all the implications this has for the market for promotional cans.

Later in the day there were further keynote talks from an array of speakers, including 2012 Medicine Nobel Prize winner, Sir John Gurdon, who spoke of his “blue sky research” leading to reversible cells and of his educational experiences which to his teacher seemed unpromising to say the least! The audience was spellbound by this talk.

Nick Coutts of CIR Strategy, organiser and sponsor, gave a world-class discussion of Routes to Value, as applied to HVM, which he has pioneered.

Dick Elsy, the new CEO of the HVM Catapult talked about the seven centres across the UK and of government and private sector funding, and how these centres are enhancing advanced manufacturing through engagement with SMEs.

Sir Michael Marshall returned to the HVM conference with an interesting talk covering HVM Successes in Cambridge, and of how his family’s business has grown from a humble chaffeur startup in 1909 to a billion pound plus company in aerospace, automotive, specialist vehicles and owning the airport.

A very strong final panel consisted of Lord Sainsbury of Turville, Sir Michael Marshall, Dick Elsy, Nick Coutts and Professor Sir Mike Gregory CBE. Quite a group! The discussion will be summarised by CIR Strategy at the legacy website and announced first to delegates attending.

The upshot of the panel was a general positivity about what High Value Manufacturing is achieving in Britain and what the future holds for an efficient, well-supported competitive economy with mutilple key advantages in manufacturing.

Please keep an eye on for further news, reports and conferences on HVM.

Conference homepage | Organiser Homepage | HVM10th Speaker Biographies | HVM10th legacy page

Future of High Value Manufacturing

High Value Manufacturing (HVM) is a concept that is widely used and accepted now. The concept was beneficial to manufacturing businesses in that it encouraged the sector to think about whole businesses and to consider a wider range of aspects of business such as time-to-market, societal and environmental issues, marketing and global strategy at a new level of focus.

In previous common usage was the term “high value-added manufacturing”. This term was limited to meaning that the finished product is worth much more than the input materials. This is crucial to but only part of what is meant by the newer term ‘HVM’. “High Value” here refers also to the benefits to society of the presence of a business that requires above average at-hand expertise, which tends to provide more high quality, well paid, interesting work, locally, than would a pure licensing technology business (See J Hayward presentation at “HVM East Conference 2003”, for evidence of this, and “Defining HVM”, IfM Cambridge U (2006), where Dr F Livesey mentions the ‘social value’ of HVM). “High Value” also refers to the environmental benefits of this kind of manufacturing, which takes us away from ‘smokestack’ industrial businesses. (CIR ran an HVM conference on this aspect in April 2008 – environmental sustainability through closed loops and sale of service business models, see also “Towards a Sustainable Industrial System”, Professor Evans (Cranfield) et al, 2009). HVM could go some way to finding more modern means to stimulate innovation and growth, compatible with a more connected and advancing world.

This more holistic view of the manufacturing business concept, which has obviously been developed over a long period of time, but with focus by academics and others under the phrase HVM, has been more marketable, and has arguably improved the image of the sector or the relevant parts of it.

A search for the phrase on Google now yields many hits and there are institutions in academia, government and industry, with the “HVM” in the name, which did not exist when the phrase was coined in 2002 by CIR as it began writing a report on and defining it.

This HVM as we understand it today in 2011 after these iterations and developments is just the start of something, that when properly and fully embraced, can go much further. Not all manufacturing companies have taken the HVM idea on board and are therefore not maximising value. And as the world globalises, and markets become freer and fairer, the areas where HVM can thrive and work will expand. Some contend that this is a risk, others say it is an opportunity (see Kaletsky in FT January 2011).

When we first wrote down a definition of HVM, which emerged from an analysis of what regional technology manufacturers told CIR in the market research (“High Value Manufacturing in the East of England”, J D Hayward, CIR 2002) we noticed how much more there was to it than linear “high value-added manufacturing”. This latter meant simply that the product assembly would be of much greater value than the previous stage of input or inputs, and was common usage. With the phrase “HVM”, used repeatedly in Cambridge and elsewhere from 2002 onwards at the conferences and in reference to the reports written, it became clear that it was nonlinear and multifaceted. The nonlinearity comes from the interdependence of innovation, marketing and operational choices made by the HVM business.

And this leads to a change of mindset, reflected in, for example, academic institutions responsible for teaching and research into manufacturing formerly focussed on the act of manufacturing and all things to with ‘lean’, now covering everything from manufacturing to distribution to management to marketing to strategy and location selection to finance to energy efficiency and so on. Those institutions were perhaps doing all these things decades ago, but there is a renewed consciousness of it, as they themselves position themselves to be, in part, commercial per se.

What HVM was and is still about was a range of inputs and ultimately, more than one type of positive output or benefit. And these in turn, were, of course, found to interrelate in various ways or be relatively independent. There is surely more, interesting academic work to be done in this area.

Some of the inputs were R&D and reinvestment in it, IPR strategy, time-to-market, novelty or difficulty of process or manufacture, novelty of market. And outputs now included not just product price for sale compared to price of materials, but also social and community benefits and getting towards sustainability environmentally. Ultimately, ‘sustainability’, with all its current confusion as a term, will necessarily mean both viability and environmentally; a nice dialectic synthesis!

It is satisfying to be able to tell the story of 20 conferences and events stemming from the HVM definition of 2002, the report about the East of England scene for HVM in 2002, and then the similar report in 2005 for the South East and the academic reports that then appeared from then on, refining and taking ownership of the concept. I would like to thank James Gray, the then Chief Executive of Invest East, a sister organisation of the RDA EEDA, for accepting an unsollicited proposal for a small amount of funding for the HVM Report of 2002 and the first conference of 15 November that year. I would also like to thank Professor Sir Mike Gregory CBE for being sympathetic towards the idea and conference, and for going on not only to Chair the first conference, but to chair a handful of conferences that CIR organised under the HVM banner in Cambridge and elsewhere. This has led not least to a wealth of case studies that could be used for teaching and development purposes.

And this is just the beginning. HVM businesses are a candidate DNA entity for the industrial system of the future: they will not damage the environment or people in society, while remaining viable and thriving. There is a 2x2x2 matrix with seven undesirable possibilities and only one desirable!

When we quite naturally have such a system, that is when we can prosper in the original sense of the word.

The 10th Anniversary of the HVM Series, where we will bring together old friends, and many new ones, young and wizened to discuss just this appealing future, takes place in Q4 2012: do contact us if you wish to know more.









Definition of High Value Manufacturing

Let’s go back to discuss also the foundations of our conference series and consulting work that began in 2002.

The working definition dating from our first conference on HVM in 2002, was (such that):

A. Not just about linear ‘value-add’
B. A function of time-to-market
C. Intellectual property is above average
C1. Reinvestment in R&D is above average
D. Lower volume or even demo/prototyping stage;
E. New or unfamiliar processes and product types.

F. Typical sectors:
Electronics; printing & displays; medical devices & biotech; aerospace; automotive & motorsport; energy & environment (now called cleantech); materials and nanotechnology.

In January 2006, the IfM said in its report “Defining HVM” that it was:

1. Value is more than profit
1a. HVM companies create financial, strategic and social value
High Value Manufacturing (HVM) companies have strong financial performance but they also generate significant value externally. For example, at a strategic level HVM companies
may be significant contributors to national R&D investment. In terms of social impact,
2. HVM companies may be measured for environmental performance, sourcing policies or their community involvement.
3. There is no simple definition of high value manufacturing; e.g. manufacturing is not production and vice versa.