Four industry experts appointed to export advisory group

FFour industry experts have been appointed to an advisory group established to help grow Scotland’s exports.

The four, who have been appointed to the Trade Board by Trade Minister Ivan McKee, bring a variety of experience and skills from different business sectors.

They join the broad range of business experts on the Trade Board who are working to find practical ways of increasing Scotland’s export performance – more important than ever in light of the UK’s exit from the EU.

The 2018/19 Programme for Government includes a commitment to invest an additional £20 million over three years to grow Scotland’s export potential.

Mr McKee said:

“Improving Scotland’s export performance is key to Scotland’s economic performance and I want to do everything in my power to support businesses in Scotland sell more products and services internationally.

“The varied experience and skills of the four new members will help widen the representation on the Trade Board and help us take forward actions to improve Scotland’s export performance.

“Due to the anticipated economic impact of Brexit, this work is more important than ever. As the recent report by the Scottish Government’s Chief Economist made clear, a ‘No Deal’ Brexit could have a dramatic impact on the Scottish economy with a potential drop in Scottish exports of 10%-20%.

“The Scottish Government is committed to ensuring that businesses in Scotland feel able and supported to embark on their export journey. I also believe that businesses who have experience of exporting are those best placed to advise government on how this can best be done – this is the role of my Trade Board.”

The four new members of the Trade Board are:

Kate Little, Managing Director, Digital Six Limited

Ms Little has 12 years of experience running a business that has grown to become one of Scotland’s largest dedicated e-commerce agency. She regularly advises clients on how they can use e-commerce to reach new markets.

Laura Birrell, Founder & owner, Sticky Heelz

Ms Birrell is the multi award-winning founder and inventor of Sticky Heelz, a product range she designed and brought to the market to improve the fit and comfort of shoes. Laura was awarded Entrepreneur of the year 2017 for Scotland and Northern Ireland. She was also Scottish Women’s Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 and Inspiring City Innovation in Business 2018 winner.

Kevin Norris, Non – Executive Director, Nova Innovation

Mr Norris was appointed a Non-Executive Director of Nova in 2017. He has extensive experience in engineering sector business development. His other previous positions include General Manager at Aalco Metals, Sales and Purchasing Manager at Mardale Pipes and Managing Director of Proclad International Pipelines.

Paul Sheerin, Chief Executive, Scottish Engineering

Mr Sheerin is an experienced international business leader, with a focus on manufacturing, engineering, sales operations and IT. He has been a keen supporter of Young Enterprise Scotland, acting as Schools Business Adviser and Dunbartonshire Area Team Chair.

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