Opportunity: Request for Expressions of Interest from West Midlands 5G Testbed and Trials Programme Trialists

How will 5G impact your business?

Trials in Worcestershire have already shown how 5G can increase productivity for manufacturers using simple but effective technologies such as preventative maintenance and AR machine diagnostics.  Building on this, we are looking to speak with other manufacturers in the West Midlands who could benefit from these and similar 5G technologies.

With increased speeds (up to 20 times faster than 4G) and improved reliability, 5G will be a major disruptor in the manufacturing world. Without the restrictions of cables, it will connect a massive number of machines simultaneously, making new technologies such as the Internet of Things, big data, vehicular communication and low latency machine tool applications a reality to a much wider audience.


In 2018 West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) won a Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sports (DCMS) competition to accelerate the roll out and adoption of 5G in the West Midlands.  

West Midlands 5G Limited (WM5G) has been created to remove barriers, convene industry expertise and prove 5G benefits by creating the UK’s first regional test bed, with key focus on the manufacturing sector.

Over the next 3 years we will work with experts from telecoms, digital innovation, academia and government to support manufacturers testing IoT, Digitalisation or Industry 4.0 technologies.

Our aim is to be industry, not technology, led so we are looking for Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering (AME) businesses of all sizes across the region to work with us, testing ways 5G-powered Industry 4.0 technologies can drive productivity and strengthen the midlands manufacturing engine.

The Opportunity

WM5G are looking for businesses across the West Midlands region to take part in this innovative programme as trialists. Participation in a 5G trial offers: 

  • A live 5G environment on which to test solutions to business challenges
  • Access to expertise in data-security, infrastructure, solution provision, and trial management
  • Opportunity of match-funding
  • Fair return on investments and IPR to all participants

In return, your business could benefit from early-mover advantage; driving new business models or eliminating inefficiencies ahead of the curve.

How to get involved

We are looking for businesses which:-

  • fit the EU definition of an SME or corporate and operate all or part of their business in the West Midlands Combined Authority Area
  • have identified potential opportunities for IoT, Digitalisation or Industry 4.0 technologies within their manufacturing or engineering environments
  • be willing to commit resources (time, people, location) as part of any trial opportunity.

To register your interest please answer the brief questions below to help us understand more about your business and ambitions.


Please answer all of the following questions using the spreadsheet (available here Worksheet in WM5G Trialist EoI final

  • SME as defined by the EU or larger corporate enterprise with operations based in the West Midlands (yes/no)
  • Indicate the number of employees in your organisation
  • Have you or do you have plans to use Industry 4.0 or associated technologies in your organisation (yes/no)
  • What are the main challenges in your business which could benefit from Digital Technologies/Industry 4.0 (300 words)
  • Give an overview of any solutions you are considering (300 words)

What happens next?

All submissions should be sent directly to Industry4@wm5g.com using the attached Excel document by 10am on the 24th June 2019.  We will contact all respondents by 28th June 2019 to discuss follow up activity. It is our intention to start the first tranche of trials by January 2020, with further tranches to follow.

Further Information

WM5G Limited may abandon or vary this Expression of Interest at any time at its entire discretion and nothing stated in this document should be regarded as an undertaking for future work streams or commercial relationships. WM5G Limited is a contracting authority as defined in the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 and is therefore required at law to undertake sourcing and procurement in compliance with said Regulations.

By submitting a response to this Expression of Interest, you consent to WM5G Limited sharing your contact details, organisation name and contact name with the entity who will lead this trial (the selection of whom is yet to be undertaken). Your details will not be used for any other purposes without your express consent.

You may withdraw your response to this Expression of Interest at anytime by emailing Industry4@wm5g.com with the subject ‘Expression of Interest – Withdrawal of Response’.

WM5G Limited’s role in this Expression of Interest is a facilitator. No representation, warranty or undertaking (express or implied) is made in this Expression of Interest regarding the suitability, capability or any other attribute of the entity who will lead the trial. Trialists must therefore undertake its own due diligence regarding the same.

Please note, an expression of interest does not guarantee that your proposal will be accepted as part of the WM5G Trials and Testbeds programme. The decision on the final submission will be reviewed by WM5G representatives taking into consideration the DCMS  requirements, as well as adding value to the WM5G Testbed and Trials programme’.

(Source: West Midlands 5G)