GFirst LEP has appointed Phil Clement, a highly experienced international economic development professional, to lead the Invest in Gloucestershire project and drive forward foreign investment into Gloucestershire as well as support the growth of existing investors.
The Invest in Gloucestershire initiative, an EU-funded project, was set up in 2019 to attract new Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into Gloucestershire. All seven local authority partners work closely with the project team to facilitate new enterprise and foster job opportunities in the county. Successes include ZeroAvia; a US aerospace firm leading the way in hydrogen technology; who recently relocated to Gloucestershire at Cotswold Airport, creating nearly 50 new jobs to date.
Phil has over 25 years’ experience in international economic development, facilitating global corporates and smaller businesses to invest in the UK and expand their UK-based operations. His career has spanned roles in local and regional Government, covering locations such as London, Oxford and Cambridge, as well as consultancy positions in the private sector and academia with the likes of the University of Oxford and Cranfield University.
Senior roles have included Head of Investor Development for the South East of England Development Agency (SEEDA) and the Director of Invest in Oxfordshire, with his most recent role being Head of Investment and Export at the Swindon & Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership.
As the project goes from strength to strength, Phil will be a key driver in seeking out new investors and promoting the county’s vibrant offering in relation to Cyber/Digital, Agri-tech, Advanced Manufacturing & Engineering and Renewables.
2022 brings some significant opportunities for the project. Phil will assist in the promotion of Gloucestershire’s cyber security sector, including the soon to be launched cyber ‘HPO’ (High Potential Opportunity) sponsored by the Department for International Trade. This will leverage the commercial teams in British Embassies and Consulates around the world, showcasing internationally key cyber assets such as the Golden Valley development adjacent to GCHQ and The Forum in Gloucester.
In addition, Phil will oversee the roll-out of a new Advanced Engineering and Manufacturing proposition for the county and will be working closely with the two Agri-tech Centres of Excellence, Hartpury College & University and Farm 491 at the Royal Agricultural University, promoting their assets globally.
Phil said: “I am delighted to be joining GFirst LEP and promoting Gloucestershire’s impressive assets in the fast-growing sectors of cyber/digital, agri-tech, advanced engineering & manufacturing and renewable technology. Working with partners across Government, industry and academia the Inward Investment Team will showcase Gloucestershire’s strengths at sector-specific events at home and abroad throughout 2022, assisting in the creation of new businesses and job opportunities across the County”
Dev Chakraborty, Deputy CEO of GFirst LEP, said: “we’re really pleased to secure the services of such an experienced individual to head up our Inward Investment project. Gloucestershire is such a great place to live and work, Phil’s role is to work with partners to communicate that message across the globe and I’m confident with his vast experience and strong network of contacts, he will do a cracking job”