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DYNAMO Growing the North East IT economy HOTSPOT

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WELCOME Dynamo is a volunteer, industry-led initiative with the core mission to Grow the North East IT Economy through collaboration, innovation, skills. We are a voice for the sector regionally and nationally and we generate ‘noise’ to promote the region as a hotspot for IT and digital businesses.
Our 140+ membership includes IT organisations, large-scale corporates, consultants, technology hubs, education providers, local government and suppliers to the industry.
We rely on the support of our region’s partners to help us achieve regional IT growth, promote our region externally, develop skills and education, and support regional research and development.
We are passionate to see our region – and our sector – prosper.
Charlie Hoult, Dynamo chair
HOTSPOT This October, Dynamo North East will publish its second Hotspot magazine in partnership with North East Times Ltd. The 80-page high-quality publication will celebrate the growing IT sector in the region, and the work Dynamo has done to support and promote digital companies and organisations.
H O T S P O T - S E C T O R F O C U S
O ur philosophy has always been that any business can be improved by using technology
to enable and support strategy: hence our strapline, “Performance Through Technology”.
Unlike other IT companies, our approach from the time we started in Durham 25 years ago, has been to focus not on technology, but on business challenges. Every project we deliver, every customer relationship, and every solution is based on our values of uniquely aligning the right technology to the problem, and never making the problem fit the technology platform.
We work with businesses of all types and sizes, national, international and global organisations in sectors including: manufacturing, higher education, architecture, engineering and construction (AEC), and distribution and transport. We’ve built considerable expertise in these key sectors, each headed up by an experienced sector lead, a strategic consultant with a wealth of understanding and knowledge of the sector and its challenges, who works in partnership with customers to deliver real business value.
Our multi-disciplined teams deliver innovative solutions and expertise in business consultancy, cyber security, IT due diligence for divestments and acquisitions, managed services, bespoke application development, business intelligence and technology infrastructure projects, to name a few. Our people are
committed to and passionate about delivering value-adding solutions to our clients’ business problems, regardless of the size, complexity, or sector in which they operate. It’s one of the many reasons we work so hard to recruit and retain the best talent around.
Our ethos has led to sustained business growth with the expansion of our Durham headquarters and turnover approaching £10m. The North East’s strong manufacturing base continues to deliver success in our largest sector, with customers in the UK and beyond, such as: Quorn, Elddis Caravans and PWS Distributors. Nationally we work with several higher education institutions including Durham
University Business School and Manchester Metropolitan University. Our well-established office in Central London focuses on our rapidly growing AEC sector and works with clients such as Cundall, Make Architects and Wilkinson Eyre.
With our strategy to grow in locations close to our customers, we have recently opened new offices in Glasgow, focussed on growth in food and beverage manufacturing and higher education in Scotland, with North West England the next target. This tactic will also allow us to extend our reach beyond the UK, with plans to open offices internationally to service our global customer base.
FOCUS ON BUSINESS CHALLENGES Helping customers build a better business regardless of complexity, size or sector
Waterstons Transformation Team: Andy Bates, Mark Lawson, Steve Williams, Dan Burrows and Andrew Gill.
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Status Digital Address: 311/312 Maling
Exchange, Hoults Yard,
Walker Road, Newcastle
Inflo Software Address: Evolve Business
Centre, Cygnet Way,
Rainton Bridge, Houghton-
le-Spring, DH4 5QY
Contact: Mark Edmondson
15 Business Centre, 15
Washington, NE38 7UA
Low Street, Sunderland,
House, Dover Place,
Aykley Heads, Durham,
Street, Newcastle upon
Tyne, NE1 6EF
Maling Exchange Hoults
Clavering Place, Newcastle
court, Durham , Durham
Sunco House, 5 Carliol
Old Casino Forth Lane,
Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne
Orion Business Park, North
Court Union Street,
Avenue, Wallsend, Tyne &
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W e now operate in a digital world. The exponential growth in internet use; the pervasive nature of social networks; and the proliferation of IoT (Internet of Things) at work and
at home, make this a digital age. Our ability to secure our data, networks and technology is becoming key to our way of life, the growth in our economy and our personal privacy.
As a result, cyber attacks pose a significant risk to the UK. They are also growing more frequent, sophisticated and damaging. The source and nature of these attacks is diverse. ‘Script kiddies’ may hack an organisation to extract high value confidential customer data. Serious organised crime groups who offer “Crime as a Service” can target sophisticated attacks on e-commerce and business systems. And in extreme cases allegations have surfaced that state-sponsored organisations have been involved in influencing political systems and elections, or targeting our critical national infrastructure.
The methods for these attacks are also wide ranging, from social engineering techniques, exploitation of software vulnerabilities, brute force DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks through to sophisticated iterative methods based on machine learning.
The UK Government has set out a clear ambition to address cyber threats and has put in place tough and innovative measures as a world leader in cyber security. This commitment is detailed in 2016-2021 National Cyber Security Strategy, which includes a planned investment of £1.9bn over the next five years to transform the UK’s cyber security capability. Additionally, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has been created to be the authority on the UK’s cyber security environment, sharing knowledge, addressing systemic vulnerabilities and providing leadership on key national cyber security issues.
However, the best approach to handling cyber threats is not one of the public sector alone - partnership with the private sector can increase effectiveness. This partnership needs to both drive innovation and also crucially help close the cyberskills gap that currently exists. North East England can play a leading role in this process by building upon its existing position as one of the fastest growing technology regions in the UK. The region already has an enviable position of having a number of universities with strong cyber and digital courses that produce highly skilled individuals that can bring value to the
industry. Combine this with the extensive public sector footprint, and the diverse private sector technology companies in the region and a clear and present opportunity exists to develop a regional cyber cluster that is at the forefront of national cyber defence.
Dynamo and Accenture are working together to help establish a North East Cyber Cluster. With supporting investment and input from Accenture, Dynamo is using the existing talent within both the North East public and private sectors, to develop a strategy for developing the Cyber Cluster. In parallel Accenture is also investing in developing cyber skills within its Newcastle Delivery Centre, so it can help address the growing demand for such skills across the UK.
Next steps Businesses in both the North East and across the UK should therefore look at 2018 as an opportunity to renew their cybersecurity strategies and ensure they’re fit for the future, the NCSC 10-Step Guide provides a good starting point.1
There are three key steps every business should prioritise: 1. Build a strong cybersecurity posture: invest in the
basics such as security intelligence and advanced access management and recognise the need to innovate to stay ahead of hackers.
2. Undertake extreme pressure testing: businesses should not rely on compliance alone to enhance their security profile but undertake extreme pressure testing to identify vulnerabilities more rigorously than even the most highly motivated attacker.
3. Invest in breakthrough innovation: balance spend on new technologies, specifically analytics and artificial intelligence, to enhance programme effectiveness and scale value.
Cybersecurity needs to move from being an IT problem, to an issue that is owned and managed collectively by all business areas. These three steps will help ensure businesses in North East England can continue to lead the world in the effectiveness of their cybersecurity strategies, building confidence among customers and significantly reducing costs.
For more information on Accenture Security services visit:’ Or make a link to the report cost-of-cybercrime-2017
REGIONAL RESPONSE TO UK CYBER THREATS Mark Larsen, Managing Director at Accenture’s UK Delivery Centre in Newcastle, argues that there should be a regional response to national cyber threats
H O T S P O T - S P O N S O R
Innovation hub: Mark Larsen in the hot seat at Cobalt, North Tyneside
References: 1)
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H ow big is the college? Newcastle College is part of one of the leading not-for-profit education and training education organisations in the UK, NCG. It offers a wide range of
courses and training programmes from entry level to Masters Degrees for more than 16,000 students each year. The college employs approximately 1,000 staff from its city-centre base in Newcastle and academies across the North East.
How much emphasis do you put on digital? We have positioned ourselves at the forefront of the industry for digital tech training. We realise the important part digital tech plays across all sectors and the transferable skills gained can be put to vital use.
What is the college’s digital tech provision? We train over 600 students in this field from entry level courses to honours degrees and apprenticeships. Our provision is not only suitable for young people but for those already working in industry aiming to gain accreditation and upskill.
The college’s digital tech department is made up of over 45 members of staff, from those in direct teaching roles to mentors and progression coaches. The teaching team is made up of industry experienced practitioners and published scholars.
We have recently invested a significant amount to create a dedicated home for digital tech at our city-centre campus. Our digital tech hub opened in September 2017 and is home to a number of brand- new digital labs and lecture theatres containing interactive screen technology. Students are able to hone their skills on over 450 PC’s and Mac’s with the latest specifications and operating systems, as well as having access to diverse range of tablet and handheld devices. Our technology is comparable to what’s found in industry.
How do you work with industry on digital tech? Our digital tech provision is supported by key employers and we have good relationships with
employers and business networks such as Accenture, Tombola, Dynamo, Space Group, Verimus and JUMP.
These employers not only provide valuable insights but also present unique experiences for our students. Employers provide live project briefs, where students collaborate in teams to solve problems. In addition, students also benefit from work placements, employment fairs and guest lectures.
How do you ensure your curriculum keeps pace with such a fast moving sector? We regularly embrace employer forums with our partners to gain valuable insight into not only what skills gaps exist within the sector but what we need to be preparing for to stay ahead.
Internally, we undertake regular curriculum reviews where we utilise this industry feedback. If we don’t think that a qualification fits what we’re trying to achieve we’ll identify other qualification frameworks to ensure the most suitable content. For our degree provision, our Taught Degree Awarding Powers mean that we can develop our own degree programmes. We go full circle with our qualifications and take our new frameworks back to industry for their insight before we roll these out to our students.
Our recent work with Space Group has seen us jointly develop an eight-week qualification in Building Information Modelling. The programme aims to equip young people who are not in education or employment with the foundation skills to be able to progress onto an internship, apprenticeship or full-time course at the college.
Within the digital tech team, we place a big emphasis on industry liaison. Staff members sit on a breadth of networking and steering groups and I personally find my seat on the Dynamo Board is one of the most valuable assets in helping the college see abreast of the developments within tech.
What do your students go on to do? Our students have gone on to forge successful careers in a diverse range of digital tech roles from security and programming to digital media and animation.
TRAINING FOR TOMORROW Deni Chambers, director of creative and digital industries at Newcastle College tells Hotspot how the college is providing the skills the digital sector needs
H O T S P O T - S P O N S O R
CONTENT The engaging and informative publication will cover regional strengths, pressing issues and key personnel in the following workstreams:
• Cybersecurity • BIM/IC3 • Professional Services • Fintech • Digital Entertainment • Shared Services • Skills/Education • Tax and Accounting • GovTech • Data
H O T S P O T - S E C T O R F O C U S
B uilding projects are ever more complicated, with developments in heating, safety, air conditioning, materials and IT. So there is potential for high levels of error in designing and workflow of a
project. In fact the uncertainty around the final cost is so high that quantity surveyors often produce a 20% margin of error – unacceptable in any other field.
All this is changing with the introduction of Business Information Modelling. BIM is an intelligent 3D model-based process that gives architecture, engineering, and construction professionals the insight and tools to more efficiently plan, design, construct, and manage buildings or infrastructure.
Such has been the success of Northumbria University’s BIM Academy and the Dynamo Build cluster that the two have collaborated to develop a vision for an International Centre for Connected Construction, IC3, a £40m centre of excellence to capitalise on regional strength and links to projects from Brazil to Hong Kong, Australia to Portugal.
BIM is a way of working, rather than a physical
object, a process for delivering and operating built assets using well-structured digital information that all the necessary parties access.
It requires all parties to collaborate and share information in a mutually accessible online space - a common data environment or ‘information model’. In this way, the risk of mistakes or discrepancies is reduced, productivity increased and costs minimised.
The potential gains from working in a BIM environment are so great that the UK government backed BIM from an early stage, a move which greatly accelerated its development and take up. After all, governments are big spenders on construction and infrastructure which accounts for 12% of the UK economy (but also every other economy – therein providing us with a fantastic export opportunity).
The UK government set up a BIM Task Group and, from 2016, required all procurement for government construction projects to use BIM. The Budget that year earmarked £15m to be invested over three years to maintain the UK’s global leadership in the use of this technology.
Mark Bew, BIM Task Group chairman, said: “From a
DIGITAL BRITAIN BUILT BY GEORDIEST Construction is undergoing a digital revolution - North East England leads the way
H O T S P O T - S E C T O R F O C U S
standing start, the UK is now leading the global race towards digitalisation of the construction industry and we will not let it slip. The hard work starts here.’’
He added: “BIM will become a required UK standard across the entire built environment and our message to all stakeholders is: join us and grasp this incredible opportunity to reduce cost and waste while driving productivity and competitiveness.’’
If the UK is leading the global BIM race, then North East England is setting the pace. Much of the pioneering development was done in the region. Dynamo Build cluster group has some 60 member firms and counting. Many are world leaders in the technology such as RIBA’s NBS Division, Viewpoint, Space Group, Ryder Architects, KyKloud and Luminous. It is estimated that they employ more than 4,500 people working in this domain.
This cluster is underpinned by the support of the region’s five universities. Northumbria University alone has 1,500 students in its architecture and built environment department alongside BIM Academy; Newcastle University has similar numbers in architecture and surveying. It is leading the world in its smart cities work at the National Innovation Centre for Data and Newcastle City Futures programme. Teesside has a BIM capability and is collaborating with TV architect George Clark on `Ministry of Building Innovation and Education’.
Anne Macdonald head of engagement for Dynamo Build said: “BIM in the North East really is a hidden gem, this is a hotspot of knowledge, expertise and enterprise. We have most of the movers and shakers, a hand in many of the leading international projects and world-leading software innovations.’’
All this adds to the compelling case for Newcastle to be the home for a new International Centre for Connected Construction, IC3.
Newcastle based Atlas Cloud has
enabled construction projects to
embrace digital technology for
a significant increase in demand
for centralised BIM applications
Atlas Cloud is working on the largest
Infrastructure project in Europe,
Nomitech (CostOS) delivering BIM
supercomputing platform.
Atlas Cloud, says: “Our ability to deliver
and integrate complex applications
customers to get on with the job. So
many projects are grossly inefficient
due to outdated processes. With
our platform, whether you are an
architect, engineer or contractor you
can just consume IT and collaborate
from anywhere that the project
demands. Those that do not embrace
new technology are already slowly
dying out.” Pete Watson, Chief Executive, Atlas Cloud
C A S E S T U D Y - A T L A S C L O U D
H O T S P O T - I N N O V A T I O N
Newcastle’s BIM Academy was co-founded by Northumbria
University and Ryder Architecture in 2010 as a centre of
excellence for digital engineering and transformation.
Ryder had been pioneering the use of BIM software to
drive productivity in architecture design and Northumbria
was researching the use of 3-D digital information to
optimise the design processes so they set up the Academy
as a joint venture. It now has a Newcastle base and people
working in Australia and Hong Kong, it guided Sydney
Opera House building management team on the creation
of a digital FM system, it is advising BA Systems and a major
fine art museum.
Peter Barker, managing director of the Academy and
a partner with Ryder, explained: “The principles behind
BIM are applicable to the entire built environment:
infrastructure, water, even mining. There are a whole series
of other digital initiatives that have emerged in the last five
years: machine learning, the Internet of things, artificial
intelligence. IC3 would operate at a macro level looking
beyond the narrow field of building information modelling.
It’s a way of joining up many broader initiatives in a centre
which can draw upon the expertise in the region and also
address a lot of the government’s aspirations in terms of
improving the productivity of the industry using things like
a machine learning and artificial intelligence.’’
C A S E S T U D Y - B I M A C A D E M Y
H O T S P O T - I N N O V A T I O N
W orld beating tech businesses are bidding to establish a centre of excellence in the North East to put the UK at the leading edge of the international built economy.
The vision for a £40m Newcastle-based International Centre for Connected Construction has been launched at the House of Lords.
Northumbria University and regional IT network Dynamo have been working on the IC3 project for several months, to further the region’s growing reputation for building information modelling (BIM), virtual reality, smart cities and cloud computing.
Matt Ridley, a keen supporter of the North East’s science and technology sector, hosted IC3 presentations at the House of Lords with further presentations hosted by the Institution of Civil Engineering in Westminster.
IC3 will be a hub for the global construction sector, researching and developing digital technologies and smarter working practices and applying them to the building lifecycle. It will also enable industry, academics and the public to co-design and co-develop the next generation of technological innovation in the built environment, and develop opportunities for exports in intellectual property.
Professor Andrew Wathey, Northumbria’s vice chancellor and chief executive, said: “Building information modelling, smart cities, sustainability and the digital industry will come together to play a significant role in the economic future of the North East. This centre, building on core research strengths at Northumbria University, in association with other partners, will make a key contribution to this process. The new centre will establish the North East’s role in the global leadership and application of this work.”
The North East has become a powerhouse for BIM with more than 4,500 people working in the sector. They are developing it into a wider offering around digitising the built environment and related
industry sectors from initial concept and design to service management and maintenance to provide smart buildings and infrastructure.
Businesses and organisations working in the sector include RIBA’s NBS Division, Ryder Architects and the internationally renowned BIM Academy, an award winning partnership of Ryder Architects and Northumbria University.
Anne Macdonald head of engagement for Dynamo Build said: “We have multiple businesses co-located almost within a mile of each other which have bounced ideas off each other and got together to collaborate over the years and that has led to the great ecosystem we have got now.’’
IC3 would explore the technology opportunities for the future of smart construction, from design and planning, through specification and commercial transactions, mobilisation and completion, through to whole life management. It would see businesses working together alongside academic researchers and students and with a strong element of public engagement.
It would also deliver direct benefits - not just to North East England, but to the whole UK – in terms of export opportunities, skills and standards, jobs, innovation, enterprise and productivity.
Dynamo chair Charlie Hoult, said: “There is a huge opportunity for UK plc to gain from leading the push for international standards in digital building - like the benefits we have from initiating Greenwich Mean Time or the English language dominating global trade. BIM has that potential to make the UK centre stage in an industry that accounts for easily 12% of the worldwide economy.
“The UK needs to push our economy’s overall productivity so any support for the digital transformation of the construction sector will help. We hope to capitalise on this vibrant cluster to align with other initiatives in the recently announced £170m for construction listed in the Government’s Industrial Strategy.’’
THE FUTURE IS DIGITAL FOR BUILT ENVIRONMENT Newcastle has the world leading skills to host a BIM centre of excellence that can boost the UK’s productivity and bring enormous export potential
MEMBERSHIP COVERAGE Every Dynamo North East member will feature in Hotspot’s directory, with coverage linked to their member package.
Additional advertising packages are also available, including:
Platinum sponsor: 2x pages editorial, 1x page advert Gold sponsor: 1x page editorial, 1x page advert
Prices available on request.
Non-member coverage Firms that are not members of Dynamo North East will be offered access to the publication on the basis membership will be included in their media investment.
H O T S P O T - D I R E C T O R Y - K I L O B Y T E
Status Digital Address: 311/312 Maling
Exchange, Hoults Yard,
Walker Road, Newcastle
Inflo Software Address: Evolve Business
Centre, Cygnet Way,
Rainton Bridge, Houghton-
le-Spring, DH4 5QY
Contact: Mark Edmondson
15 Business Centre, 15
Washington, NE38 7UA
Low Street, Sunderland,
House, Dover Place,
Aykley Heads, Durham,
Street, Newcastle upon
Tyne, NE1 6EF
Maling Exchange Hoults
Clavering Place, Newcastle
court, Durham , Durham
Sunco House, 5 Carliol
Old Casino Forth Lane,
Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne
Orion Business Park, North
Court Union Street,
Avenue, Wallsend, Tyne &
H O T S P O T - S E C T O R
How did you become one of the North East’s leading IT lawyers? I’ve always had a passion for technology and jumped at the chance to join Sage. In seven years as its senior in-house lawyer I had
some unique experiences - negotiating with Amazon and Microsoft, supporting Sage’s move to cloud and launching innovative products. It gave me fantastic hands-on experience that I’ve built on since joining Muckle in 2016, working closely with the vibrant North East tech sector and taking part in Newcastle Scaleup Summit, Newcastle Startup Week and the #ThisIsMINE campaign. I also keep up to date as a member of the Society of Computers & Law and the Cloud Industry Legal Forum and attend various events like VRTGO, Sphere Network and Dynamo.
How can businesses be sure of getting the right tech advice? In a sector where products and services are updated so frequently, each release can create different legal considerations so ongoing legal support is required. You need a lawyer you feel comfortable working with - someone willing to get to know your business, understand your vision and help you get there.
What has been the biggest IT development in the last 18 months? Muckle’s IT legal team has been busy getting clients ready for the General Data Protection Regulation changes due on 25 May. It affects all businesses and
sectors, and our GDPR talks and round table events are proving really popular.
What should tech businesses watch out for in 2018? We might embrace cloud technology in our personal lives but the business community is not quite there. I believe a mix of cost savings and GDPR compliance will increase cloud adoption in 2018 and beyond. At VRTGO17, I was also inspired by how more businesses are adopting VR and immersive technologies, something I hope we’ll see at the Great Exhibition of the North. What technology can you not live without? Probably my Samsung S8 VR kit. It has allowed me to scale Everest and introduced me to a whole new world of entertainment – although I still get motion sickness every time I use it. I also couldn’t survive without the CBeebies app on my son’s Kindle.
To learn more, email [email protected] or call 0191 211 7972.
MUCKLE LLP IT lawyer Jill Dovey, from Muckle LLP, answers questions on technology law.
PARTNERS - NORTH EAST TIMES North East Times provides a voice for those who are shaping the North East economy across print, digital and film.
The high quality monthly publication combines inspiring business and lifestyle content for professionals who are working and living in the North East.
We look to build on the four-decade history of the North East Times title, while embracing the latest digital innovations to engage, inform and entertain our audience.
By publicising the achievements of the individuals, companies and organisations that are impacting the local economy, our aim is to showcase the North East as a vibrant and productive place to work and live.
With our modern approach and established legacy, North East Times strives to be the number one business publication in the region, both on and offline.
Alison is an NCTJ- qualified journalist with more than 13 years’ experience. She has written extensively for a range of digital and print titles, and has managed the delivery of multiple magazines as editor. She is adept at creating engaging copy that informs and entertains its target audience. Alison was named ‘One to Watch’ in the The Journal’s Most Influential People in the Norht East 2017.
[email protected].
From interviewing some of the leading lights in business and sport in the UK to running one of the most active regional newsrooms in New Zealand, Dan is a highly- qualified journalist and editor with a wealth of experience. Previous roles include managing editor in Newcastle United’s media office and news editor for SunLive – NZ’s largest independent news website. Dan’s byline has appeared in The Guardian, FourFourTwo and North East Times as well as a host of online platforms.
[email protected].
Peter was the lead designer at the previous North East Times before leaving the title to become a senior designer and then creative manager at two prominent marketing companies. He brings this vast experience in print and digital design with him as the creative mind behind the all-new North East Times’ print and digital platforms.
[email protected].
Martin helped shape the former North East Times for more than a decade as a sales manager and commercial director and now has the opportunity to realise the full extent of his vision for the title as advertising director. He works with clients to develop and create on and offline media solutions which deliver results.
[email protected].
Chris is a highly experienced editorial and commercial photographer who has been commissioned by The Guardian, Little White Lies Magazine, The National Portrait Gallery, BT Broadband, EMI and Virgin Records. He provides the lead photography for North East Times, in addition to running his own successful freelance photography business.
A guaranteed 8,000 Hotspot magazines will be printed.
7000 will be distributed with North East Times’ October edition spanning Tyne & Wear, County Durham, Teesside and Northumberland. Of these, 4000 copies will be mailed directly to North East business leaders and influencers, while 3000 will be delivered to key business and lifestyle locations and made available through North East Times’ subscription service.
The remaining 1000 publications will be distributed at Dynamo North East events throughout 2018-2019.
DIRECT MAILOUT 4000 are posted directly to key decision makers and influencers in the region - targeting those at the top performing and fastest growing North East companies and organisations.
BLEED SIZE: 171mm width x 251mm height
DOUBLE PAGE SPREAD: Trim: 330mm width x 245mm height Bleed: 336mm width x 251mm height
FULL PAGE: 165mm width x 245mm height 171mm width x 251mm height
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SPONSORS: Platinum: 1 full page advert Double page spread supplied editorial (600 words) Logos - 300dpi jpg | minimum size: 50mm x 50mm Images: 300dpi jpg (with relevant captions)
Gold: 1 full page advert 1 page supplied editorial (400 words) Logos - 300dpi jpg | minimum size: 50mm x 50mm Images: 300dpi jpg (with relevant captions)
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For more information please contact: [email protected]