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Feature Article: United Kingdom Trade & Investment (“UKTI”)

UKTI and the BABC of Greater Philadelphia

UKTI promotes British business globally by helping UK-based companies expand internationally and helping overseas companies invest in the UK’s economy – acknowledged as Europe’s best place from which to succeed in global business. UKTI offers expertise and contacts through its network of specialists in the UK and in British embassies and diplomatic offices throughout the world. UKTI provides companies with the tools they require to be competitive on the world stage.

UKTI’s free and confidential services can help current investors get the most from their UK operations and help potential investors navigate the international expansion process. UKTI offers advice on the basics of doing business in the UK and market entry strategy–such as company registration, corporation tax, employment law, property costs, visa and work permit requirements, site visits, proximity to customers, and incentive programs–and as well can make introductions to key multipliers and potential UK partners. UKTI can also help R&D-intensive companies leverage university partnerships to maximum advantage through its R&D scheme. And once a company is officially operational in the UK, it becomes eligible for UKTI’s trade services which can help companies explore further opportunities all around the world.

Traditionally a representative from UKTI New York has occupied a seat on the Board of Directors of the BABC of Greater Philadelphia, providing our local group with current UK Consular and trade and investment information and services. In addition, the UKTI Board Member assists our Chapter of the BABC with introductions to Her Majesty’s government and business leaders who influence our regional development. Most recently, John Lindfield MBE HM Consul and Regional Director (East Coast USA) UK Trade & Investment USA has participated on our Board. The BABC of Greater Philadelphia has been very lucky to have had John’s support for the past five years.

In his role as HM Consul and with UKTI, John has overseen business operations throughout the eastern US states. Prior to his appointment in July 2005, John served in London as the Deputy Head of Procurement Strategy Unit in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO).

In 1995 John joined UK Trade & Investment as the chief trade officer in Cape Town. This coincided with the election of Nelson Mandela. While identifying opportunities for UK business, John was able to develop mutually beneficial relationships that also facilitated the empowerment of black South African businesses.

Following his tour of duty in South Africa, John spent four years, until 2003, as Head of the Regional Inward Investment Team in San Francisco. During this time he continued to work with the UK’s existing inward investors such as Cisco, HP, Microsoft etc. while also identifying new investment projects in the Bay Area and the Pacific North West.

Before concentrating on trade and investment, John completed several tours of duty on behalf of the FCO across North Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

John is now headed to Amsterdam, where he will be Regional Director for Consular Directorate of the FCO (responsible for the protection of British nationals overseas) managing teams in eighteen different countries in Northern and Western Europe.

John’s successor, Amita Randhawa officially took over John’s role as HM Consul and Regional Director (East Coast USA) UK Trade & Investment USA, and her seat on the Board of Directors of the BABC of Greater Philadelphia on September 20, 2010.

Amita joins UKTI from Barclays PLC, where she was seconded to the group’s corporate affairs team (since January 2009), focusing on financial services sector regulatory reform and other public policy issues.

Prior to her position at Barclays, Amita joined the UK Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS, formerly the Department for Trade and Industry) in 2001, where she worked in policy areas including corporate governance, employment relations and regional policy. In her tenure with BIS Amita was responsible for carrying forward the implementation of new EU audit standards, audit market issues, and narrative reporting requirements for UK-listed companies. In this role, she also acted as Secretariat to the UK-US Corporate Governance Task Force, bringing together senior representatives from business, trade bodies, regulators and Government (2006-08).

Amita was seconded to the Cabinet of the EU’s External Relations Commissioner in Brussels (2006), and served as Private Secretary to the DTI’s Permanent Secretary (2004-05). Prior to this, she has led negotiations for the UK in Brussels on employee relations legislation (2002-03), and worked on central Government departments’ sponsorship of regional development agencies (2001-02).

The Board of Directors of the BABC of Greater Philadelphia welcomes Amita to the team. The BABC looks forward to a continued strong relationship with the new HM Consul and Regional Director at UKTI as we embark on our Fall 2010 program season.

In addition to BABC of Greater Philadelphia programs, UKTI is hosting a number of activities to help both US and UK companies grow internationally.

Click here for UKTI upcoming event details

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