News from ISSBA
Tuesday, 11 February 2020 11:27

Member of the Month - February 2020

Our February Member of the Month is Ipswich Borough Council who tell us about their support for key sectors in Ipswich.

Ipswich Borough Council support for key sectors in IpswichIpswich Borough Council

The Ipswich Borough Council Economic Development team coordinates several groups that bring together people from a range of industry sectors.  These groups are for networking and information exchange, raising the profile of their sectors across the region and beyond, making links between industry and skills / education providers, and organising events or projects.  These groups also have a role in informing local authorities and the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (NALEP) about what is important to them.  Although IBC organises these groups they are industry-led to keep them focussed on what is most relevant and topical.

Two groups that are already up and running are:

Finance, Insurance and Professional Services (FIPS) – This was formed after research conducted by the New Anglia LEP showed the need to align the work of financial and professional firms, local government, and further and higher educational establishments.  FIPS is looking to provide strategic direction and leadership to ensure promotion within Ipswich and Suffolk.  The group will look to work with schools, colleges and universities to create a greater understanding of the FIPS sectors and to help address any skills gaps. 

Greater Ipswich Manufacturing Group (GIMG) – This is sponsored by New Anglia Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (NAAME) – which was set up to drive the growth of engineers and manufacturers through collaborative working. The GIMG is a forum where like-minded professionals can come and discuss topics as diverse as: staffing, lean methodologies, Industry 4.0, exporting goods abroad or whatever else is uppermost in their mind. The group also includes local government agencies and academic intuitions to give their take on any topic.  

Now that these two groups are established, the team are working on the set up of two more sector groups:

Creative Industries sector group – This will include screen industries (such as film & TV), marketing, publishing, design and architecture.  Some businesses already come together in a regional group and this has been influential in creating a Skills Plan.  However there has been interest in creating a specific group for Ipswich, and we’ll work with the sector to facilitate the best agenda.

Digital Tech sector group – This will include businesses in the ICT & digital tech sectors and will link to Tech East and the regional Tech Industry Council, but will focus on issues raised by businesses locally.  The agenda is likely to include skills challenges and access to finance, but can cover any issue felt to affect the growth of the sector locally.

Anyone that might be interested in finding out more or attending one of these groups, please contact the team on