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Five experienced business leaders have been appointed to the Greater Manchester Business Board.
The Greater Manchester Business Board replaces the city-region’s Local Enterprise Partnership and acts as a voice for local businesses within local and national decision making. The new members were confirmed at a meeting of Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) in Bolton on 24 November.
The five new board members confirmed are:
- James Byrne, Partner, Sustainable Ventures
- Devrim Celal, CEO, KrakenFlex
- Laura Percy, Senior Development Director, LandsecU+I
- Steve Rothberg, Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Manchester Metropolitan University
- Michael Wilton, Director and Manchester office leader, Arup
The new board members will work alongside Greater Manchester Business Board Chair, Lou Cordwell, and Vice-Chair, Greater Manchester Economy Lead and Leader of Manchester City Council, Cllr Bev Craig. The Business Board works with GMCA and Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham to provide private sector insight, guidance and challenge to help shape strategy and policy in the city-region.
Chair of Greater Manchester Business Board, Lou Cordwell OBE, said:
“Following a thorough recruitment process, we are pleased to welcome James, Devrim, Laura, Steve and Mike to the Greater Manchester Business Board. Their insights and knowledge will be invaluable as we seek to deliver the right kind of economic growth, bringing people and planet with us. I would also like to thank the departing members for their contributions over the years.
“As we transition from the LEP model, and now with our membership refreshed, the Business Board will continue working with local leaders to give representation to our city-region’s business community. Together we remain committed to building a fairer, greener and more innovative Greater Manchester economy.”
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said:
“The Business Board performs an important role in Greater Manchester, helping us ensure perspectives from businesses of all sizes and from a range of sectors are considered by leaders. Lou and the Board also do fantastic work as advocates for Greater Manchester and our economic strengths, both nationally and internationally. I look forward to working with the new Board members to help our city-region reach its potential.”
Cllr Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council and Greater Manchester Lead for Economy, Business, and Inclusive Growth, said:
“In Greater Manchester we want to build an economy that works for more of our people. The Business Board has an important part to play, giving business leaders a voice and providing a forum for sharing their insights. The new Board members will help us as we seek to deliver on our ambition for inclusive growth.”
The Greater Manchester Business Board was established following the government’s decision to bring the function of Local Enterprise Partnerships into local authorities from April 2024. Further new members are expected to be confirmed later this year.