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IRL, UniServices keen to lend a hand to manufacturing sector

Industrial Research Limited (IRL) and the University of Auckland’s commercialisation company UniServices are planning to team up to boost business innovation in the high-value manufacturing sector.

Industrial Research Limited (IRL) and the University of Auckland’s commercialisation company UniServices are planning to team up to boost business innovation in the high-value manufacturing sector.

Both organisations specialise in the provision of R&D and are investigating business models to formalise a collaboration offering expertise to the industry, which they hope to confirm by the end of the year.

IRL deputy chief executive Drew Stein said there was significant potential to increase the contribution the manufacturing sector makes to the New Zealand economy.

“The aim of the collaboration is for New Zealand manufacturing firms to get greater value from the R&D capability within both IRL and The University of Auckland through improved scale and co-ordination,” he said.

Scientist Sir Paul Callaghan said the manufacturing sector had been growing much faster than the rest of the economy.

"It’s invisible to most New Zealanders, it’s invisible to the politicians, but we’re very good at it. We just need to grow it by a factor of 10."

According to UniServices chief executive Peter Lee, the role of R&D in successful and developed economies has been well demonstrated to date.