25 Mar An Introduction to the Rail Supply chain Rail mentoring programme, on offer across GBSLEP

  • Rail Mentor introduces you to rail supply chain opportunities
  • This free to use scheme provides direct access to global top tier rail companies
  • Expert support is available to guide mentor and introduce participants.



 Opportunities in Rail are large and diverse. Current and future spending is at unprecedented levels. The Rail supply chain is in many sectors and encompasses Civil. Construction, Electrical. Electronic, Digital, Mechanical, Control, Pneumatic disciplines. If you want to grow your business in the Rail sector, and are in the Greater Birmingham and Solihull area this is for you.

Sign up at https://gbslep.railmentor.com/  for a  mentoring programme that provides exclusive access to senior decision makers within the industry.

Rail Mentor is a free initiative developed with industry experts within the Rail Alliance, a business to business networking organisation, and supported by the Greater Birmingham & Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP). It aims to introduce any company with high-growth potential to the supply chain of  global firms within the rail sector, with expert support available.

Via the scheme top tier organisations such as Alstom, Siemens, Bombardier, Hitachi, Network Rail, and HS2 Ltd will be advising companies on how to shape their product or service to meet their expectations of the supply chain. They will also offer a select number of companies direct access to their management team, meetings at their facilities and coaching.

Mentees do not need to be operating within the rail sector to take part in the programme. Companies that are unfamiliar with the industry, but are interested in accessing it, will be put through a ‘gap closing’ process to assess their ‘rail readiness’. This offers coaching designed to introduce companies to the sector.

The Rail Alliance and GBSLEP will be on hand to help companies through the application process and can advise on the availability of financial support for companies who qualify.

 Mike Lyons, GBSLEP Board Director for Improving Connectivity, said:

“The Rail Mentor initiative will help local companies within the rail supply chain to unlock their potential, by giving them unique access to senior decision makers from the sector. The scheme will enable our SMEs to anticipate and address the needs of potential customers – helping them to better access the rail industry’s supply chain, and win more business as a result.”

 Jim Panter, Rail Mentor Manager said,

 “We are absolutely delighted to be working with the GBSLEP team to support companies in this region wanting to either get into rail as a sector or to leverage more business opportunities. The market is huge and growing.

Media contacts

  • Matthew Jewsbury, Communications Assistant, West Midlands Growth Company: jewsbury@wmgrowth.com / 07876 753 365
  • Rebecca Bannister, Senior Communications Manager, West Midlands Growth Company: bannister@wmgrowth.com / 07375 082 363

 Notes to editors


The Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) is a partnership of business, public sector and further and higher education. Its mission is to drive sustainable economic growth across the city-region, creating jobs and improving the quality of life for everyone. The GBSLEP area spans nine local authority areas: Birmingham, Solihull, East Staffordshire, Cannock Chase, Lichfield, Tamworth, Redditch, Bromsgrove and Wyre Forest. For more information about GBSLEP, please visit the website, subscribe to its newsletter or follow on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Rail Alliance

The Rail Alliance sits in the middle of the rail supply chain and is the UK rail sector’s largest dedicated business to business networking organisation – bringing customers, suppliers and supply chain opportunities together. Its broad spectrum of membership extends beyond pure rail and positions the Rail Alliance as the go-to membership organisation in the UK to nurture diversity, ingenuity and innovation across the rail and transportation sectors’ supply chains.

We remain much focused on the need to support companies large and small from every sector in their endeavours to trade in and enrich the rail sector. Uniquely our membership spans all aspects of the rail supply chain and we have no barriers to entry. Over the last 10 years we have grown from an off shoot of the Manufacturing Advisory Service within the West Midlands to become the premier B2B networking organisation in the rail sector, with members drawn from all corners of the country – and indeed the globe.

Abigail Southall
Abigail Southall