Shoestring launches in Cornwall

Shoestring’s regional model takes another step forward by training local advisors to support the Shoestring programme in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

The Shoestring programme will soon be available to small and medium sized manufacturers (SMEs) in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly via a regional community levelling up programme. Members of the Shoestring team at the Institute of Manufacturing, University of Cambridge, are working with Oxford Innovation Advice to support a new Digitisation for Manufacturers (D4M) programme in the region.

Funded by the UK Shared Prosperity Fund as part of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Good Growth Programme, which aims to promote economic growth and productivity, the programme will support  manufacturers in adopting digital tools and innovation in their manufacturing processes.

We know that manufacturing SMEs can struggle with digitalisation, the Shoestring approach provides a structured way to take a low cost, low risk first step. Our approach has already engaged over 450 companies and deployed Shoestring solutions in over 80 companies, but to scale we aim to develop a regional model, giving companies access to Shoestring expertise delivered by a local partner.

A group of Cornwall based advisors and digital experts have started training in how to apply the Shoestring approach – they are learning how to deliver Shoestring workshops and support the deployment of simple Shoestring digital solutions that help companies get started. Oxford Innovation Advice will use this Shoestring knowledge, together with their GROWTHMapper digital readiness tool and tailored digital adoption business support, to enhance digital skills and stimulate growth in the region’s manufacturing sector.

Learning more about Shoestring’s unique approach to digital adoption has been enjoyable, engaging and insightful. The hands-on experience in creating a downtime monitoring solution provided a real insight into how simple digital solutions can help small manufacturers. I was impressed how straightforward it was to set up and configure the downtime monitoring solution – it was clear to see how this and the wider suite of Shoestring solutions can make an immediate positive impact for SME manufacturing businesses.” Matt Giles D4M Programme Manager, Oxford Innovation Advice

This project complements Shoestring’s activities in Scotland, Western Australia and Egypt, together with our sales pilot.

We are delighted to further develop our regional model by collaborating with Oxford Innovation Advice to deliver local Shoestring support in Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly. We look forward to working with the team to build their regional know-how and learn how best we can support local activity via a partner.” Professor Duncan McFarlane, founder of the Shoestring project

The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme will be looking to form cohorts of companies interested in trying a Shoestring digital solution in the new year.

Oxford Innovation Advice Commercial Director, Andrew Finley added:

We are proud of our reputation for innovative, high impact models of business support delivery. This partnership with Shoestring is the latest example of this and we are delighted to be bringing the benefit of this groundbreaking approach to the manufacturers of Cornwall and Isles of Scilly."

The new Digitalisation for Manufacturers (D4M) programme is announced by Cornwall Council  on their website

Interested in joining Shoestring’s Cornwall programme?

If you are an manufacturer in Cornwall or the Isles of Scilly contact the Growth Hub to find out how to try Shoestring.

Keen to set up a Shoestring in your region?

If you are a governmental or regional organisation keen to find out how you could commission a Shoestring scoping pilot and regional rollout, email: