Connected Autonomous Vehicle (CAV) cluster connects partners to accelerate growth.
ICAV has been setup to establish and connect CAV cluster partners locally, nationally and internationally to encourage business opportunities for all members involved and to accelerate the growth of the rapidly changing driver-less transport industry.
The ICAV cluster was set up initially in the West Midlands – the centre of the CAV industry in the UK-, in order to bring major players in the sector together.
Driven by Conigital Ltd, the ICAV cluster of small businesses drives progress in transport innovation, finding new opportunities, funding and economic development.
Since its establishment and due to its successes, ICAV developed an international focus.
The cluster has supported the growth of a number of successful development project bid consortia.
ICAV is a membership organisation, privately funded. Membership includes networking opportunities with peers within the sector, business introductions, opportunities to post job adverts, advertisement opportunities and attending a variety of events -locally, nationally and internationally- all at a cost.
This is privately funded. Conigital estimates the resources needed as about £80,000 in costs plus significant time valued at £150,000.
The prime movers work in this space and have credibility with the potential cluster members.
The Cluster is self -financing from membership and event income.
Evidence of success
Success of this cluster is evident in the growing membership and the fact that it is now self-supporting. Additional hubs to the one in the Midlands are being set up also in Manchester and London. A further evidence of the need and value of the practice is the international interest which brought to a re branding of the original MCAV (Midlands based) into the ICAV (internationally focused) and the connected clusters being initiated in Portugal, France and Romania.
Potential for learning or transfer
Clusters and peer-to- peer interactions are often considered to be one of the contributing factors to growth of successful businesses.
The advantages of clusters in terms of productivity, speed of innovation and new businesses are well known. Since they were first identified many efforts have been made to establish new clusters to support growing or strategic industries in regions.
This cluster demonstrates some of the key success factors in cluster practice.
It crosses Industry classifications, working within digital and Advanced Manufacturing industries.
It is driven by actors within the cluster, developing and growing a network in which they have credibility.
The locality has assisted in this process. Like many clusters, it is not confined by regional boundaries. In this new digital world boundaries are less important as working can take place in any part of Europe and, indeed, the results of this work will need to be standardized across the world.
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