Leonardo and SMEs on Destination Net Zero journey together

01 December 2022

As part of Leonardo’s 'Social Value' series, the company hosted the workshop 'Destination Net Zero, Leonardo and Small Medium Enterprises working together on the journey' led by SWMAS (South West Manufacturing Advisory Service) at the iAero Centre in Yeovil, Somerset.

Small- and medium-sized enterprises from across the UK and Leonardo’s supply chain gathered to share knowledge and best practice, and have open discussions about the real hurdles we all face when trying to find innovative solutions to tackle one of the key challenges on the UK Government’s agenda: How to reach Net Zero by 2050.

Through interactive group activities, the SWMAS team challenged attendees to consider four key steps to Net Zero: reducing company emissions, reducing value chain emissions, integrating climate into business strategy, and influencing climate action in society. This is achievable through colleague engagement and ensuring teams are on the journey together. Furthermore, through taking small steps like reducing office temperatures, have big impacts for energy efficiency.

Adam Clarke, Managing Director of Leonardo Helicopters UK, commented: “We recognise the need for change and are committed to a greener future. That means being conscious of our own operations, and of the products we build and the services we enable for our customers.

“Destination Net Zero has provided the opportunity for like-minded companies to share knowledge and best practices on how our businesses can contribute to our respective Net Zero targets over the coming decades.”

Nick Golding, Managing Director at SWMAS, stated: “I think it’s fantastic that Leonardo is so engaged with its supply chain, bringing together SME companies across the UK to try and help launch their Net Zero journey and simplify the challenges they face. This learning and knowledge-sharing enables Leonardo to work together collaboratively with their supply chain to help the UK Government reach its Net Zero goal.”

Peter Morrish, Technology and Customer Support Manager at CMTG, said: “What’s clear is how seriously Leonardo is taking Net Zero, and what’s great for an SME like us, is to be part of the dialogue and see how we can actually make a difference in the supply chain to not only make a better product, but to also work to reduce our carbon footprint, which will have a wider benefit for the South West and the UK as a whole.”

Quincey Katie Ankrett, Director of e50K Consultancy, commented: “My key takeaway from Destination Net Zero is the importance of the full supply chain. You can often think of Tier-1 as the trendsetters and innovators, the result of which is cascaded down through Tier 2, 3, SMEs and VCSEs [voluntary community and social enterprises]. What the event has highlighted is that this can be reversed with innovation coming from small businesses, which is a really refreshing concept – for these types of companies to be the change-makers.”

Social Value is about the positive change we bring to our communities and stakeholders: economic, environmental and societal value, and it sits at the heart of all we do here in Leonardo.

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Leonardo integrates sustainability into all aspects of our business to create long-term value and generate positive economic, social and environmental impacts for the company and our stakeholders.


A Strong and Diverse Supply Chain

Maintaining Leonardo's healthy and productive relationships with all our suppliers is critical to our continued success. Our seven major sites across the UK each bring investment into the local economy and wider region through strong links with supply chain companies in the surrounding areas. We spend approximately £600m with over 2,100 companies in our UK supply chain annually.

Video: The Home of British Helicopters

For nearly 80 years, we've been manufacturing helicopters at our Yeovil site, the UK's only end-to-end rotary wing capability.