Aerospace and defence companies from Northern Ireland are among the highest achievers at an awards ceremony in Belfast today for supply chain firms from around the UK and Ireland.

The Achieving Supply Chain Excellence event at the Titanic Centre is sponsored by Invest Northern Ireland and is attended by more than 250 company representatives. It sees 65 companies recognised with awards for boosting their competitiveness through the 21st Century Supply Chains (SC21) programme.

The programme helps small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the aerospace and defence sectors to make operational improvements, reduce overheads and improve their potential to grow.

Today’s Belfast event seee the following awards presented and announced:

Silver awards made for the first time to three companies based in Northern Ireland:

  • Technical Metals Ltd and ThyssenKrupp Aerospace in Newtownards.
  • Springco (NI) Ltd from Craigavon.

Bronze awards to six companies:

  • Two from Northern Ireland – McGreevy Engineering from Belfast, and CCP Gransden from Ballygowan.
  • Righton Ltd from Glasgow.
  • HITEK Electronic Materials Ltd, from Scunthorpe.
  • Swiftool Precision Engineering Ltd, from Nottinghamshire.
  • Wood Group Industrial Services’ site at Portsmouth Royal Navy Dockyard

A further 23 companies will be re-awarded with silver award status, and 33 saw their bronze level accreditation re-awarded.

The programme aims to support SMEs who supply major manufacturers such as Bombardier, Airbus, Rockwell Collins, Thales and Rolls Royce, helping the whole of the UK’s aerospace and defence industries raise their ability to compete in international markets.

The SC21 programme is coordinated and governed by ADS, the UK trade association for the aerospace, defence, security and space sectors.

ADS Chief Executive Paul Everitt said:

“Today’s event is a celebration of the important contribution supply chain companies make to the quality, competitiveness and capability of the global aerospace and defence industry.

“I congratulate all those in Northern Ireland and across the UK whose achievements have been recognised with awards.

“This week we have seen the aerospace sector set a new record for annual aircraft deliveries. Supply chain companies who are committed to continuous improvement and raising their performance are essential to this achievement.

“As our industries get ready for Brexit, investing in competitiveness and taking part in programmes like SC21 is one of the most important steps companies can take to make sure they are well prepared.”

Alastair Hamilton, Chief Executive of Invest Northern Ireland, added:

“Today’s recognition event highlights the commitment of businesses across the UK supply chain to deliver exacting quality standards and world-class performance in a globally challenging cost environment.

“Invest NI will continue to encourage best practice and increased competitiveness among the supply base in Northern Ireland.

“We remain committed to the programme and will continue to support local companies to progress on their SC21 journey. We want Northern Ireland to stay ahead of the curve in the industry and SC21 helps participants to compete in a global market place.”