A tailored package of support for Sunderland businesses wanting to grow and thrive within the automotive sector.

The LABS-S project, which is part-funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, is delivered by the North East Automotive Alliance (NEAA) who have a proven track record in delivering business support programmes to the automotive sector.

LABS-S, which will run until March 2025, will facilitate the collective needs of the automotive supply chain and support some of the key deliverables of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund to stimulate economic development in Sunderland.

What are the opportunities?

LABS-S is delivered by an experienced team of industry specialists who can provide the tools and specialist support to access sector knowledge, best practice and new opportunities within an evolving and growing sector.

The Sunderland region is central to the North East automotive sector and accounted for 57.5% of the £8 billion of regional automotive turnover in 2021.

The North East of England is a globally significant region for automotive manufacturing, home to the UK’s largest and most productive car plant, three of the UK’s top five off-highway manufacturers and an internationally competitive supply chain comprising 34 first tier suppliers and a myriad of innovative SMEs.

It is also recognised as the UK’s leading location for vehicle electrification thanks to the Nissan LEAF, Europe’s first Giga battery manufacturing facility, its full Power Electronics, Motors and Drives capability and a raft of further investments that have bolstered these credentials.

Whether you are already in the automotive supply chain or looking to diversify, the LABS-S project will help you navigate industry transitions, such as new vehicle technology, industrial digitalisation, automation, future skills and localisation, to accelerate business growth and ensure the region remains globally competitive.


Facilitating the collective needs of the automotive supply chain:

Access to Industry Specialists

Industry insight and sector knowledge on regional, national and international automotive supply chains

One-to-One Business Support

Tailored support and guidance, in addition to industry-led training and workshops

Capability Improvement and Best Practice

Sharing best practice, solving common problems and driving innovation to support business improvement goals

Networking and Events

Industry-specific events to facilitate sector networking, collaboration and supply chain opportunities

Grant Support

Grant funding to support a new process or technology adoption

A Package of Support

One size doesn’t fit all. The NEAA will work with your business to deliver support that is right for you

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025. The Fund aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business, and people and skills. For more information, visit: UK Shared Prosperity Fund: prospectus


If you’d like to know more about the LABS-S programme, please contact the NEAA on:

T: 0191 516 4400
E: enquiries@northeastautomotivealliance.com

You can also fill in an expression of interest form here