Satellite Applications Catapult centre ramps up for business

Satellite Applications Catapult centre ramps up for business

03 Dec 2012

  • Chairman and Chief Executive appointed
  • Catapult ready to begin work
  • Catapult to incorporate International Space Innovation Centre

 The Minister for Universities and Science, David Willetts, has announced the appointment of the Chairman, Tim Sherwood, and Chief Executive Officer, Stuart Martin, for the Satellite Applications Catapult centre.  This comes as the Catapult begins work on its initial activities and as progress continues towards the incorporation of the International Space Innovation Centre (ISIC) within the new Catapult, following agreement to merge the two organisations.

The Satellite Applications Catapult, part of a network of world-leading technology and innovation centres of excellence, will be based at Harwell in Oxfordshire and will be a world-class centre for the development and commercial exploitation of space and satellite-based products, services and applications. 

Speaking at the EU Space Solutions conference in London, Universities and Science Minister David Willetts said:

“I am delighted to be able to welcome Tim Sherwood and Stuart Martin as Chairman and Chief Executive respectively of the Satellite Applications Catapult centre.  Their experience and expertise will help to make the Catapult a real force for innovation in the sector and stimulate the rapid commercialisation of these technologies, so that we can capture a bigger share of the growing global space market.

“The Satellite Applications Catapult will build on the significant achievements of the International Space Innovation Centre and will take forward a shared vision to become the catalyst for growth in the UK space sector.”

Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, said:

“We are absolutely thrilled that Tim and Stuart will be leading the Satellite Applications Catapult. It is being established at a crucial time for the UK’s thriving and growing space and satellite technology industry.  The Catapult will play a vital role in stimulating growth in the sector, which     will benefit the wider UK economy, and their wide-ranging knowledge and deep experience will be of enormous benefit.  We look forward to working with them.”

Tim Sherwood, the Chairman of the Satellite Applications Catapult centre, said:

“Being asked to Chair the Satellite Applications Catapult is a great honour.  With support from the Technology Strategy Board, we have a great opportunity to put the UK in a premier position to   develop world beating applications generated by our world class academic base and the   innovative businesses, both small and large."

Commenting on his appointment as Chief Executive Officer, Stuart Martin said:   

"The Catapult programme is a vital element of the UK strategy to drive economic growth from emerging technologies, and I am very excited to have been asked to lead this initiative for the Satellite Applications Catapult centre.  Already with a 7% share of this fast-growing, global market, this is a great opportunity to establish a world-leading position, and make the UK the place to be if you want to do business in space"

Tim Sherwood will chair the Board of the Catapult, which will support UK industry through the acceleration of the growth of satellite applications, with the aim of capturing a 10% share of the growing global space market.  Tim is an experienced non-executive director and has been chairman of the Hospedia Group Ltd and CVLV Group Ltd, and Deputy Chairman of Redstone plc.   Before starting his non-executive career, Tim Sherwood held a number of directorships within the Vodafone Group.

Stuart Martin joins the Catapult as CEO from Logica, now part of CGI, where he has been Business Director for Space and Satellite Communications since January 2006, with responsibility for all the company’s activities in the space domain.  Stuart joined Logica in 1989, initially to work on orbit control systems for the European Space Agency, and has performed a range of engineering and management functions, mainly in the fields of satellite navigation and meteorological processing, before moving on to more strategic business roles in 2003.

Harwell was chosen as the location for the Catapult because of the growing cluster of organisations there dedicated to advances in space technology and the development of satellite applications.  The appointments signal that the Catapult, which has agreed initial funding with the Technology Strategy Board, is now ready to begin work on its initial activities.   

From Harwell, the Catapult will be well placed to deliver its vision, to support UK industry through the acceleration of the growth of satellite applications and to contribute to capturing a 10% share of the £400 billion global space market predicted by 2030.  

Plans are progressing for the Catapult to incorporate ISIC from April 2013.  The merger will make the most of synergies and expertise in the sector and help to simplify, and more powerfully direct, space innovation activity.  The merged organisation will work with businesses of all sizes and complexities, academia and end users to help develop market-leading, satellite-based, applications and provide an accessible collaborative environment to accelerate the UK’s space growth potential.

Catapult centres are being established by the Technology Strategy Board, as a new addition to its range of programmes to stimulate innovation. They are places where the best of the UK’s innovative businesses and researchers work together to bring new products and services more quickly to commercialisation. Focusing on areas with great market potential, Catapults will open up global opportunities for the UK and generate economic growth for the future.

View the press release including notes to editors here


Last updated on Monday 03 December 2012 at 16:13

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