Director of WMG Professor Lord Kumar Bhattacharyya was presented with the award for Lifetime Contribution to Midlands' Business in a ceremony on Friday 28 January 2011.
Professor Lord Bhattacharyya has been at the heart of business and has championed manufacturing for over 30 years. He has been intensively involved in the British Automotive industry, and recently announced that Jaguar Land Rover will be establishing an Advanced Technology Centre at WMG, co-locating 160 research and development people to work on the development of new technology, with a special focus on low carbon vehicle technology, digital technology and materials technology to name but a few.
Professor Lord Bhattacharyya established WMG in 1980 in order to reinvigorate UK manufacturing through the application of cutting edge research and effective knowledge transfer. The group started small - just an office, the Professor and his secretary - but by working collaboratively with industrial partners, WMG has grown into a global force in a wide range of fields, from automotive research to innovations in healthcare.
Professor Lord Bhattacharyya has published extensively in the field of manufacturing and is advisor to many companies, governments and organisations around the world. He has been honoured many times. He was honoured with a CBE in 1997, awarded a knighthood in 2003 for services to higher education and industry and was elevated to the Lords in 2004.
The Midlands Business Awards is an annual event that celebrates success and innovation from across the region. On hearing that he had been given this accolade Professor Lord Bhattacharyya said:
"I am delighted to receive this award, we started in the Midlands, this is our base and our support is here. It is a tremendous honour for me, WMG and the University of Warwick."
Professor Nigel Thrift, Vice Chancellor of the University of Warwick added:
"Professor Lord Bhattacharyya has been a pioneer of partnership between manufacturing and University research and teaching. Many jobs have been created, and the boundaries of scientific knowledge have been pushed back, by the strength of his advocacy of such partnerships and his effectiveness in actually delivering such partnerships. His leadership in this field has benefited our region and continues to have a global impact."