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Tributes paid to a business champion who helped save Jaguar Land Rover

Professor Lord Bhattacharyya helped save Jaguar Land Rover. Credit: WMG/University of Warwick

Tributes have been paid to a business champion who died today (Friday 1 March) due to illness.

Professor Lord Bhattacharyya, Chairman of WMG at the University of Warwick, passed away after a short illness.

He was responsible for helping to bring Tata to the city and brokered the deal which led to the revitalisation of Jaguar Land Rover.

Lord Bhattacharyya was a remarkable and inspirational man who played a significant role in U.K. manufacturing and engineering over the past 50 years.

He was an exceptional mentor to many people at Jaguar Land Rover and will be greatly missed. Through his clear vision, strong sense of purpose and his warm charismatic personality, he energised people of all ages and backgrounds and created momentum for creativity and positive change. Professor Lord Bhattacharyya’s legacy will be exceptional, wide reaching and long lasting."

– Jaguar Land Rover

Coventry City Council says he helped make a difference to the city.

In a joint statement the Leader of Coventry City Council, Cllr George Duggins, and Deputy Leader, Cllr Abdul Salam Khan, said the impact of Lord Bhattacharyya’s work could never truly be measured, and he had been fundamental in leading Coventry towards a bright future.

Lord Bhattacharyya loved his adopted city of Coventry and had a great desire to see it as a world-leader in manufacturing and design.

Without him, Coventry would not be the great centre of innovation and manufacturing that it is today. His vision and determination have put us right at the heart of the automotive industry of the future.There are many around Coventry and Warwickshire who will have been directly affected by his work, maybe without even knowing it."

– Cllr Duggins and Cllr Khan

Lord Bhattacharyya was behind the Warwick Manufacturing Group, based in Coventry. It is one of the world’s top applied research centres, with a reputation for academic excellence and business results.

His work resulted in the creation of the new National Automotive Innovation Centre, bringing in international research leaders to the city and giving them the equipment and facilities to develop ground-breaking designs and technological breakthroughs.

He also won the right to build an £80m Battery Industrialisation Centre to serve the entire UK automotive industry and in cutting-edge research for autonomous and electric vehicles.

Lord Bhattacharyya also had a road named after him.