Advisory Board appointed to propel freight sector innovation forward

New Freight Innovation Cluster Advisory Board features heavy-hitters from across the freight and logistics industry.

Innovation in the freight sector promises to be accelerated with the creation of a cross-sector board convened by Connected Places Catapult.

The Freight Innovation Cluster Advisory Board comprises 17 participants from client organisations, transport operators, logistics firms, contractors and specialist technology companies developing innovative new approaches to moving and handling goods.

The Board aims to provide strategic oversight to the Cluster, which was created earlier this year to champion innovation in the sector, bring people together to share ideas, trial new technology and develop the potential for entrepreneurial collaborations with commercial potential.

The Cluster Advisory Board acts as an intermediary between the Department for Transport and the Cluster. It features representatives from DfT’s Science and Technology, and Freight teams and brings together an outstanding breadth of stakeholders in freight and logistics.

Members of the new Advisory Board are:

Arnold Du Toit, Founder and Chief Executive of venture capitalist investor We Sprint;

Amos Simbo, Founder and Director, BPIC Network (representing black and minority ethnic professionals);

Charlotte Pearce, Founder, Charlotte Pearce Consulting and Chair of Women in Transport – Yorkshire Hub;

Chris Hatter, Head of Compliance, Portsmouth International Port;

Chris Jones, Ecosystem Director (Integrated Infrastructure), Connected Places Catapult;

Connor Lyons, Innovation Business Partner, Associated British Ports;

David Cebon, Director, Centre for Sustainable Road Freight;

David Elvy, Head of Future Freight Strategy, Department for Transport;

Gabriel Durojaye, Digital Innovation Leader, Costain Limited;

Hao Zheng, Co-founder and Chief Executive, RoboK;

James Tichler, Head of Innovation, Department for Transport;

Jessica Ferrari, UK & Ireland Project Lead Engineer, FedEx;

Kingsly Kongnyuh Kwalar, Founder and Director, Optimiz;

Max Sugarman, Chief Executive, Intelligent Transport Systems UK (ITS UK);

Michael Merritt, Commercial Project Manager, Skyports Drone Services;

Rafiq Swash, Founder and Director, Aidrivers;

Richard Moody, Programme Director (Freight Reform), Great British Railways Transition Team (GBRTT).

“Freight and logistics play such a vital role in supporting the UK economy with well-functioning supply chains being essential for the movement of goods and provision of services.

“I’m looking forward to working with the Board, cluster members and the wider sector to identify key challenges that we will address together through innovation and cross-modal collaboration. Both are essential if we are to remove the barriers that prevent the seamless flow of goods in to, out of and throughout the country.”
Connected Places Catapult’s Ecosystem Director for Integrated Infrastructure, Chris Jones

Key tasks of the Advisory Board include promoting transport inter-modality in freight, ensuring that future decision making involves a fair representation of companies within the sector, and that the freight industry is as diverse as possible and accessible to all.

To help address some of those issues, an engagement event involving Freight Innovation Cluster members is scheduled to take place at Portsmouth International Port on 27 July.