Defence Secretary Michael Fallon met a number of British based small and medium sized companies at the Farnborough International Air Show who won awards in the MOD-funded Defence Growth Partnership Innovation Challenge, run in partnership between the Defence Solutions Centre and the MOD…

The Defence Secretary was also given a tour of the UK Defence Solutions Centre (DSC). The DSC offers collaborative support to companies competing in the global defence market. The Secretary of State also welcomed three new organisations to the membership of the UK DSC – Ultra Electronics, University of Southampton and Cranfield University.

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said: "The Defence Growth Partnership brings together the best minds in the defence industry and is a fine example of British initiative. I congratulate all the winners of the Innovation Challenge. These projects are good for our armed forces, good for our economy and good for Britain."

The Minister for Defence Procurement Philip Dunne, who launched the Innovation Challenge in 2015, was also on hand to congratulate the British SME winners. The winners have now been awarded follow-on funding totalling £2.3million. The winners were Close Air Solutions, Inzpire, Glyndwr Innovations, Amethyst Research, University of Birmingham and QinetiQ.

These companies all helped provide innovative solutions on how the defence industry responds to issues surrounding big-data and air surveillance.

Minister for Defence Procurement, Philip Dunne said: "I’m delighted to see these exciting projects now moving forward. It shows what can be achieved when both the defence industry and government work together. I look forward to seeing other British Defence companies involve themselves with future innovation challenges."

Chief Executive of the UK Defence Solution Centre, Steve Brittan said: "The Defence Growth Partnership is all about ensuring the UK remains at the forefront of the global defence market. Through the DGP Innovation Challenges run by the UK Defence Solution Centre and Centre for Defence Enterprise we’ve been able to demonstrate that great innovation exists here in the UK which will serve the needs of both our Armed Forces and international customers."