10 years of success for industry cluster that serves Hartlepool firms

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AN industry cluster which serves many of Hartlepool’s chemical firms has looked back on 10 years of success – and revealed how it has supported more than 4,000 jobs.

The North East Process Industry Cluster (NEPIC) has held its annual meeting.

Members heard how NEPIC had succeeded by working in collaboration with other agencies.

Its achievements have included private consultancy work, joining in with innovation projects connected to low carbon, and working to promote North-East industry through the Regional Growth Fund.

It is also involved in the BASME Project (Business Acceleration for SMEs) which has helped to bring more than 300 supply chain jobs to the region.

NEPIC is also a major partner in delivering the UK Trade and Industry regional contract for trade through its Go Global subsidiary in collaboration with the Northeast Chamber of Commerce (NECC) and RTC North.

Chief executive Dr Stan Higgins told delegates that NEPIC was the only UK cluster which was accredited with the EU, compared with 480 such bodies across other parts of Europe including 180 in Germany alone.

NEPIC chairman Paul Booth said: “Stan Higgins and the NEPIC team can be rightly proud of how they have turned around the cluster and sustained business activity in the region when many other such organisations have collapsed in the UK.

“NEPIC remains a strong voice for the process industry and this was demonstrated by their significant contribution to the recent UK Chemical Growth Strategy.”

He said NEPIC had given direct support to more than 80 investments and 4,000 jobsand had also helped with sustained marketing of 
the North-East process industry.