West Midlands – shifting up a gear with high demand for technical translations


As the automotive industry in the West Midlands shifts up a gear, the demand for technical translations grows. If you ever needed confirmation that the West Midlands is the UK’s automotive hub, then Automechanika 2018 held at Birmingham NEC earlier this month is where you should have been! This annual exhibition and conference showcases innovation and new products, and hosts seminars exploring some of the latest thinking in the automotive industry.

As well as attracting delegates and exhibitors from across Europe, Asia, US and beyond, many of our UK automotive clients were also at Automechanika. Over the three days, Automechanika saw 12,000+ decision makers from motor factors, workshops, retailers, dealers, OEMs, tier 1 and tier 2 manufacturers, pass through the NEC.

West Midlands outstrips the national average for exporting

New figures from the government show that the West Midlands outstrips the national average for exporting. According to HMRC, the region posted a 7.6% rise to £33.7 billion in its exporting activity for the year ended March 2018 compared to the national average of 6.5% growth in exports of goods across England.

HMRC’s research shows that during the first quarter of 2018, the West Midlands was home to more than 9,680 exporters, an increase of 2.5% year on year. Other interesting statistics from this report include:

  • The largest export sector was machinery and transport, amounting to £6.4 billion in Q1 of 2018. This is 72% of the £8.8 billion in total exports for the region during this quarter.
  • The largest market by region for the West Midlands is the EU at £3.9 billion and by country it is North America at £2 billion.

Not surprisingly, demand for technical translations is keeping track with this growth and Comtec is supporting many exporting businesses in the region. Our expertise in both technical translations and specifically automotive translations, specialist linguists, and the ability to handle all file formats, including artworking files, is helping our clients reach customers in the EU and further afield.

Ever increasing demand for technical translations

For us at Comtec, Automechanika was a great opportunity to touch base with our automotive clients, many of whom are located here in the Midlands, and also to speak to prospects about automotive translations. As a language services provider with our HQ in Leamington Spa, Comtec are ideally placed to support automotive manufacturers and suppliers in this region, such as Aston Martin, Jaguar Land Rover, Delphi, MIRA, and Impetus Automotive.

It was also great to see some of our translation work in action! Trade fairs and industry events are a great opportunity to engage with punters from different geographic markets – no surprise that many exhibitors and even attendees had translated content available to share. As Zoe Harris explored in a recent blog post about localising content for international events, having translated material available for global customers can really differentiate your business.

The automotive industry produces a lot of material that requires translation for international markets. From technical documents and specifications to product marketing information and websites, it’s important to ensure that you can communicate your brand’s value proposition effectively whatever the locale. Building a strong partnership with a translation service provider will help your company increase outreach and significantly improve time-to-market, and this is clearly an approach that many automotive companies in the West Midlands buy into.

If your company requires technical or automotive translations our Translation Guide: TechnicalMarketing Material can help. Alternatively, please get in touch with me directly to discuss any questions you have about translation services.

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