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Corporation Launches 'Electronics South'

Canterbury Development Corporation Launches 'Electronics South'

The Canterbury Development Corporation last week launched "Electronics South" - a new electronics cluster for Canterbury's burgeoning electronics and component manufacturers, contractors, distributors and service providers.

The Canterbury electronics industry is nationally recognised as the significant high-tech centre in New Zealand with industry estimates suggesting that Canterbury contributes as much as 50% of the total national electronics output. Evidence suggests that historic growth of this sector will continue at over 25% per annum. Development of a regional cluster within the electronics and broader ICT sectors is a vital initiative to encourage continued regional economic growth. The Canterbury Development Corporation is therefore pleased to announce the establishment of this new electronics cluster.

Canterbury Regional Economic Development Strategy (CRED's) identified the importance of this sector to Canterbury's future economic growth. Recent ICT Taskforce reports also support the development of high-tech businesses throughout NZ.

In February 2003, an electronics breakfast was hosted by the Canterbury Development Corporation. Forty-five participants from electronics businesses and support services within Canterbury attended the function. The objective of which was to introduce the concept of regional collaboration and investigate the opportunities and benefits of Canterbury electronics businesses collaborating. Since this inaugural breakfast, a leadership group has been developed comprising industry representatives and support sector members. This group has since met several times in the past three months to develop the strategic goals of the group, plan activities and assist in identifying relevant businesses in the region.

The CDC then undertook surveys of local electronics businesses with comprehensive responses received from 71 businesses. The respondents include original electronics manufacturers, contract manufacturers, component manufacturers, distributors and service providers. The survey predominately focuses on small to medium electronics businesses, though several larger electronics businesses were also consulted to enhance the findings of the survey.

An interesting finding that emerged from the survey is the critical "commercialisation gap" constraint existing within the electronics industry, where product development and production planning evolve as a result of internal resources of a company rather than being market led.

The results of the survey have been fundamental in the development of the new industry cluster - Electronics South. A full report of the survey is available on the new Electronics South website at http://www.electronicssouth.com/news.html

Copies of the presentations made at the official launch in Christchurch on 24 July 2003 are also available on the website. The mission of Electronics South is to "enable electronics businesses in Canterbury to be world leaders", the benefits of participating in Electronics South regional initiative for businesses include:

· Enhanced management capability

· Access to relevant industry information

· Access to industry best practice

· Increased profile of Canterbury as an electronics world leader

· Increased awareness of local expertise

· Improving access to appropriately qualified staff

· Networking, relationship development opportunities

· Improved business performance

· Assess to channels to market

· Increased sector publicity

· Unified electronics voice

About the Canterbury Development Corporation

The Canterbury Development Corporation (CDC) is a limited liability trust company that acts as the economic development and employment services arm of the Christchurch City Council. It is a non-profit, commercially neutral enterprise agency that is non-sector-aligned and regional in outlook, recognising the very real economic/employment impacts of the wider Canterbury region on the Christchurch economy. CDC promotes and facilitates economic growth in the region by working with businesses to improve their management capabilities, helping communities to help themselves, and working alongside key agencies to promote Christchurch and Canterbury as the destination of choice to live in, invest in, and do business.

CDC promotes and facilitates economic growth and employment in the region in accordance with the CCC Annual Plan by focussing on: Fostering job-rich economic growth Employment, education and training Improving the management capabilities of businesses Helping communities to help themselves

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