Business Leaders Breakfast - Southampton Boat Show - September 2021Business Leaders from across the region learned about the critical role the Marine and Cruise Industries play in Southampton and the Central South region at the latest Business Leaders Breakfast held at the Southampton International Boat Show.

Lesley Robinson OBE, CEO of British Marine, welcomed guests and gave an insight in to the importance of the Boat Show and how they are working to encourage more engagement with the local community, and to make the show an integral part of the city.

Lesley spoke of how glad she was for the Boat Show to return this year after the pandemic put pay to last year’s show – and highlighted that having over 350 exhibitors this year shows the resilience of the marine sector after a challenging year.

Tom Dynes, Director from Solent Stevedores then provided guests with an overview of the key role they play in the Port of Southampton, including the immense challenges they faced in the uncertainty of the pandemic. He also gave an insight of the role Solent Stevedores plays in the cruise industry, explaining that they handle 800 cruise turnarounds, over 3.8 million luggage items and 120,000 tonnes of ship provisions each year across 5 terminals in Southampton.

Finally, Dean Drew, Corporate Partner from Lester Aldridge gave an overview of the impact that Brexit and the COVID pandemic has had on international trade for a number of sectors. 

See our highlights videos below:

Commenting on the event, Leigh-Sara Timberlake, Group CEO for Business South said:

“It was so great to see Champions again at an ‘in-person’ event, and at such a great setting as the Southampton International Boat Show. It is clearly an exciting time for the marine and maritime sector in the Central South, particularly with the Solent being recognised with Freeport status and the positive impact this will have on the region’s economy.”

The event was sponsored by Champions British Marine and Morgan Sindall Construction.

For more information about other upcoming Business South events visit our events page here.