SEGRO, the leading owner, manager and developer of warehouse and industrial space, has been announced as a strategic partner of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), with a commitment to invest £2bn over the coming decade to deliver next generation, net-zero warehouse facilities in the West Midlands.
As a strategic partner, SEGRO aims to deliver 13.5 million sq ft of sustainable warehouse space across the West Midlands by the end of 2033, focused on tech-enabled logistics facilities as well as purpose-built space for Research & Development and light manufacturing.
The development programme is expected to create up to 14,000 jobs across a wide range of employment types and industry sectors and will contribute significantly to economic growth and ‘levelling up’ for the region – two core aims of the WMCA.
SEGRO’s comprehensive programme will also support the WMCA on its ambitious programme of devolution, policy innovation and delivery.
It comes on the back of the WMCA securing a ground-breaking Deeper Devolution Deal with central government in March and the combined authority’s history of working effectively with strategic partners who share its wide-ranging vision and purpose and want to invest and develop in the region.
The investment will be focused on a mix of warehousing types across the region. This includes the development of SEGRO Park Coventry – a 450-acre site that has planning permission for the construction of 3.7 million square feet of industrial buildings and warehouses.
This development programme exemplifies the company’s Responsible SEGRO commitments to champion low carbon growth and invest in local communities and environments. SEGRO will actively pursue whole life, net zero carbon development as its default approach, and will limit operational and embodied emissions so far as is feasible on each project. It also plans to develop approximately 2,700 affordable, easy-to-use, and easy-to-access electric vehicle charging points at its developments across the region. This will also help businesses achieve long-term sustainable growth in the West Midlands, supporting the region’s ambition to become net zero by 2041.
The ten-year programme includes plans for SEGRO to run dedicated skills and training programmes to support 5,000 local young people into employment and provide a further 1,000 apprenticeship opportunities in construction. The company also anticipates creating a dedicated industrial and logistics training and job brokerage programme which aims to help 1,500 disadvantaged residents in the region to develop the skills to secure employment with SEGRO’s customers.
SEGRO, alongside the WMCA’s other Strategic Partners, is committed to helping achieve the Combined Authority’s vision of a more prosperous and better-connected West Midlands which is fairer, greener and healthier.
David Sleath, Chief Executive Officer, SEGRO said:
“There is a long-term shortage of modern, sustainable industrial employment space in the West Midlands, which is vital to enable the efficient movement of goods across the country, and to support high-tech Research & Development and manufacturing.
“By working closely with the West Midlands Combined Authority we can identify and unlock brownfield sites for development and deliver critical infrastructure that serves the whole of the UK, creating a diverse mix of local employment and supporting the creation of a more resilient economy across the country.
“SEGRO has an ambition to the best property company, and in line with this we look forward to working with West Midlands Combined Authority, local authorities, businesses, and communities in the West Midlands to accelerate our investment in the region and deliver best-in-class, next-generation warehousing.”
SEGRO’s investment into the West Midlands will support the region’s Plan for Growth – a roadmap to develop eight specific industrial clusters where the West Midlands already has a competitive advantage and its Investment Prospectus (a plan showcasing the most exciting investment opportunities in the region).
Logistics and distribution is one of the region’s key clusters, reflecting the West Midlands’ location within the so called ‘golden triangle’ – a concentration of haulage companies alongside the M5 and M6 in Birmingham and Sandwell and between Leicester and Nottingham alongside the M1.
Andy Street, Mayor of West Midlands said:
“SEGRO becoming a strategic partner is another welcome vote of confidence in our region and the investment programme they have committed to today is testament to their level of belief in a bright future ahead for the West Midlands. It is exactly this kind of private sector investment – combined with the public sector creating the right conditions – that will ultimately drive our prosperity in the months and years ahead.
“SEGRO’s investment programme will help regenerate long neglected areas right across our region – building just the sort of modern premises that companies need to grow – creating high quality jobs for local people in the process. These next generation developments will also support our region’s #WM2041 net zero commitment.
“I look forward to SEGRO’s investment programme resulting in projects on the ground that change the lives of local people in the months and years ahead.”
To coincide with becoming a strategic partner of the WMCA, SEGRO has also announced it is relocating its National Logistics business unit to Coventry city centre. Being based in the heart of the West Midlands will enable SEGRO to build scale and further enhance stakeholder relationships in the region.