Make UK launches re-branded Defence Trade Association


Make UK has re-launched its specialist defence and space Trade Association, formerly NDI, as Make UK Defence.

NDI was launched twenty years ago as the Northern Defence Initiative by the North East Development Agency to help regional businesses to win work on the then fledgling Aircraft Carrier programme. Since those early days as a regional trade body, Make UK Defence has become one of two national Defence Trade Associations recognised by the Ministry of Defence (MOD), with nearly 300 members spread across the whole of the UK.

In particular, Make UK Defence works across the UK supply chain, especially with SMEs and mid-tiers helping to make connections and develop supply chains for many of the UK’s most critical defence programmes. It acts as a leading critical interface with the major Prime Contractors in these sectors and has recently become the lead Trade Association for the MOD’s new Small and Medium Sized Enterprise (SME) Working Group with the industry co-Chair drawn from Make UK’s membership. This Group has an important role in improving engagement between the MOD, major Prime Contractors and the SME and mid-tier Supply Chain, especially as the MOD wants to spend around 25% of its total budget with SMEs by 2022.  

Make UK Defence is a division of Make UK, The Manufacturers’ Organisation, one of the UK’s major business bodies and the representative voice of UK manufacturing, with offices in London, Brussels, every English region and Wales. 

Collectively it represents 20,000 companies of all sizes, from start-ups to multinationals, across engineering, manufacturing, technology and the wider industrial sector.

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