Dear members and friends,

Last week we promised a head’s up on our most recent members. We have been busy!

Membership development has been solid, reinforcing Strategy International's appeal to the full range of UK-based enterprise. Since the start of 2017 we have seen the following arrivals (name/revenues/employees):

·      Imperial Brands / £36bn / 36,400

·      Serco / £3.2bn / 100,000

·      FTI Consulting / US$1.76bn / 4,600

·      Cubic / US$1.5bn / 8,400

·      Coventry University /£230mm / 30,000 students

·      Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership

·      Squire Patton Boggs / US$1bn / 1,400

·      Sustainable Criminal Justice Solutions (SCJS), as specialist SME delivering justice projects across the globe in support of HM Government and agencies,   including work with judiciary, prosecutors and police.

·      Pegasys, another SME providing bespoke consultancy focusing on the impact of economic development in emerging economies.

Our colleagues from BEI returned from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan last weekend full of great ideas and a range of new contacts.  This inaugural UK trade mission was strongly supported by the British Embassy and focussed on Education & Training; Infrastructure; Tourism; and Professional & Business Services, with cross-cutting aid funded business being relevant to all.  All highly relevant to our broad membership.

HM Ambassador Robin Ord-Smith MVO led the mission briefings and hosted an excellent reception, the group of almost 20 companies were also briefed on the regional DfID programme, a business seminar and an extensive programme of bespoke individual meetings, as well as group sessions including meetings with the Minister of Economy and the Minister of Education. The mission was led by BEI Director Nigel Peters, ably supported by SI Director Alexandra Barnes, and none of this would have been possible without the excellent admin support from Sue Watkins back in the office.

Building relationships is a key element of joining Strategy and getting the most out of our unique networks is a distinct benefit.  I have done many missions over the years and am convinced that a focussed group visiting a new market with a comprehensive programme of tailored activity including bespoke meetings is enormously valuable to developing business opportunities, meeting the right people and gaining first-hand knowledge and experience.  Our next visit will be to neighbouring Kazakhstan in June.

Back at base there were highly informative meetings with RUSI’s ex director Michael Clarke, on the Trump effect on global security. Thought provoking analysis and some distinct challenges for how the UK chooses to position itself. The same morning we had an absorbing infrastructure sector session from someone actively engaged with the current White House policy team.

 

Best wishes for the weekend,

Tracey Smith - Deputy Chair, Strategy International