BT Ramps Up Green Tech Innovation Platform Activity

The platform's second phase sees the development of new digital solutions for fast moving consumer goods manufacturing businesses.

BT has moved to the next phase of its Green Tech Innovation Platform as it seeks to make new friends and profit from the race to Net Zero.

The Green Tech Innovation Platform, launched in 2020, was awarded the Responsible Business Alliance Innovation Award at COP26 last year.

During COP26, the UK Chancellor talked about the need for “better and more consistent” climate data, sovereign green bonds, and mandatory sustainability disclosures. Many UK-based firms have wised up to such opportunities.

The second phase for BT means it will develop new digital solutions for fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) manufacturing businesses as they seek to adopt more sustainable manufacturing processes.

The Manufacturing Technology Centre is collaborating with BT on the new phase of the project. BT is also continuing its work with Plug and Play, an innovation platform headquartered in Silicon Valley, to support the selection of scaleups.

Dean Terry, MD Corporate and Public Sector at BT, says: “In line with the BT Group Manifesto announced last year, this further demonstrates how we’re committed to creating future digital services that will support our customers in driving quicker progress towards a circular world with net zero emissions.”

The FMCG sector is currently “the largest manufacturing market” in the UK, accounting for 14% of all goods manufactured in the country.

The Green Tech Innovation Platform aims to explore how digital technologies such as IoT, edge computing, data, AI and 5G can play a role in helping manufacturing customers in their transition to Net Zero.

The platform will focus on addressing three main areas within FMCG manufacturing.

These include circularity and supply chain (e.g., tracking the flow of products, components and materials); production resource optimisation; and operation design and planning – such as developing solutions that use data and digital technology to improve modelling and visualisation.

Firms can apply to join the platform here. If accepted, they can work with BT and its customers. The scope of the partnerships will range from BT helping them to find a faster route to market through to new revenue share models.

BT aims to announce the successful scaleup partners in late spring and start developing proof of concepts with customers in the summer.

In other news this week, BT signed a £30 million deal with Distributed, a company providing access to on-demand “Elastic Teams” of technology staff. (It sounds like the same concept as contractors.)

The Distributed contract, the first of its kind for BT, secures a board seat and an equity stake in the business.

Back in December, BT said it will be recruiting over 150 new local jobs as well as beginning a major refurbishment of its second contact centre in Newcastle.

The full-time contact centre roles will be recruited by EE, part of BT Group.

Antony Peyton
Antony Peyton
Antony Peyton is the Editor of eWeek UK. He has 18 years' journalism and writing experience. His career has taken him to China, Japan and the UK - covering tech, fintech and business. Follow on Twitter @TonyFintech.

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