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Verizon and Software AG play a crucial role in transforming manufacturing innovation as they join Made Smarter Technology Accelerator

Posted 3 Feb 2021

Research from the wider Made Smarter movement estimates that by 2030 the UK will be a global industrial leader in creating, adopting and exporting advanced digital technologies, shaping how the world does business. Digital Catapult’s Made Smarter Technology Accelerator at the heart of this mission to accelerate innovation into industry. Today, the programme welcomes sponsors Verizon and Software AG, in addition to the seven Industry Challenge Owners.

Launched in 2020, the Made Smarter Technology Accelerator is a one of a kind programme enabling the UK’s pioneering technology innovation community to join forces with some of the UK’s leading industrial businesses and technology providers. It will answer industry-set challenges across four technology layers: future networks, immersive technologies, artificial intelligence and distributed systems. Together with the partners and sponsors it provides the funding and a platform to produce transformative technology prototypes and minimum viable (MVP) products set to drive productivity, digitalisation and innovation to push forward the fourth industrial revolution.

Geraldina Iraheta, Chief Commercial Officer at Digital Catapult, the UK’s leading advanced digital technology innovation centre, said: “It’s clear there are many opportunities to utilise advanced and emerging technologies to play a transformative role in the UK’s manufacturing industries. These organisations represent diverse sectors and common industry challenges that will be addressed through collaboration and knowledge sharing with the UK’s leading innovation ecosystem, and in collaboration with our technology partners. We’re excited to welcome Verizon and Software AG to the Made Smarter Technology Accelerator; their products will be fundamental in helping drive innovation and development throughout the programme, and bringing these game-changing technologies another step closer to delivering value and wide scale implementation.”

The Tech Sponsors provide strategic positioning by working directly with the Industry Challenge Owners to unlock new market opportunities. Verizon and Software AG will also assist the prototype and MVP development with dedicated workshops and in-kind support for the startups on the programme.

John Crawford, GM International, Enterprise Innovation and 5G Solutions, Verizon Business Group said: “As a leader in Private 5G solutions, Verizon is delighted to be a part of the Made Smarter Technology Accelerator, together with the Digital Catapult team. We have seen tremendous interest from manufacturing customers and the Made Smarter Technology Accelerator allows us to showcase next-generation Private 5G solutions within this very important sector, helping companies realise the benefits and empowering them to take advantage of this next wave of market-changing solutions.”

Nadeem Malik, Head of UK & Ireland at Software AG, added: The change that companies saw during 2020 was unprecedented, but we shouldn’t expect the need to quickly adapt and innovate to stop with the end of the Covid pandemic. We will always need new ideas, new ways of looking at challenges and new solutions to keep businesses moving in the right direction. The work of digital transformation is never done, which is why we’re committed to the Made Smarter Technology Accelerator programme, to help make sure that new ideas are given every opportunity to become reality.”

The Made Smarter Accelerator programme Industry Challenge Owners are; Babcock International Group, BAE Systems, GAF, Northumbrian Water Group (NWG), O’Neills Irish International Sports Company Ltd, Safran Landing Systems and Sainsbury’s. Verizon and Software AG now bring the total sponsors on the programme to nine, all helping to shape and lead the programme outcomes with direct impact for the wider UK industry.

Made Smarter Technology Accelerator is a programme delivered by Digital Catapult, funded by UKRI through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, as part of the national Made Smarter movement.

To find out more and follow how the programme progresses visit