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Meet the Chair

We talk to David Stringer-Lamarre, The IoD City of London chair, and managing director of Fortis Consulting, about the business leaders in his region

Why are you pleased to represent the IoD?

The organisation has a strong focus on effective business leadership, governance, engagement with government and driving forward performance.

What’s the IoD’s role to the City’s business leaders?

IoD City provides a rich ecosystem of business people to engage with. The branch interacts with many stakeholders and partners and represents its members when communicating with the City of London Corporation and the government. Due to the international background of the City and Canary Wharf there is significant engagement throughout the year with international companies, high commissions and embassies. 

Tell me a little about your members

IoD City is comprised of 1100 members ranging from directors of smaller businesses to the largest City institutions; significant numbers come from financial, professional and business support services. Members have a keen interest in international trade, innovation and entrepreneurship. We have four special interest groups: China, property, financial services & young executives. 

We are a strong supporter of diversity of thought and have worked with several Lord Mayors and their agendas in this area. The branch continues to increase the percentage of women members and attract younger business people. 

What is so unique about your region?

The City and Canary Wharf are very performance driven areas with a diverse business population reflecting its status in the world. Financial services is core and there is a deep interest in innovation, entrepreneurship and cross border trade. 

What does your region/branch offer business leaders?

We run events throughout the year which are very well attended. These may be on general business topics e.g. Economic Forecast 2016, as well as sector focused ones organised by four special interest groups. We also have several flagship events including dinner in the House of Commons with the all party parliamentary China group and dinner with the Lord Mayor in Mansion House. The branch has strong links with the City of London and several former IoD City chairs have been Lord Mayors, including the president & immediate past chairman, Sir David Wootton.

What are you most looking forward to, as IoD regional chair, in the next 12 months?

Working with the talented committee, and members, to further build the events programme, and our engagement with stakeholders and decision makers, within a framework focused on business innovation and success. 

Finally what's your personal business ethos?

I strive to be part of dynamic teams that look to put business performance at the centre of the agenda. Innovation, entrepreneurship, effective management and sound governance are cornerstones of success.

We talk to Karelia Scott-Daniels, Chair of IoD Central London and Managing Director of Manse & Garret Property Search about business leaders in London.

Why are you pleased to represent the IoD?

The IoD represents business interests nationally and excellent business practice, regardless of size or sector and has been instrumental in maintaining the interests of all businesses at the heart of government policy.

As the capital city, London has a more national perspective than many areas, whilst retaining the village flavour at micro level which makes London special.  As such it is my privilege to meet business leaders from all backgrounds and walks of life

What’s the IoD’s role in business in London?

The London branch is by far the largest of any at the IoD with over 5000 members within Central London.  With many of the 10,000 members from branches in the South East of England and the City of London regularly attending our events and using the IoD premises in Pall Mall, IoD Central London provides superb opportunities to engage with other business leaders, partners, investors and politicians.  Our members and guests include key influencers on a global scale and as a branch we provide a platform from which to collaborate, engage and grow.

Tell me a little about your members.

As the largest branch within the IoD, we have members from all sectors from manufacturing to business services, from billion pound global corporates to start ups looking for funding and student members with their own businesses. With so many hedge funds and banks in the West End in particular, financial services are strong, as is property and technology.  We also have a healthy strand of members who work for government departments such as UKTI, local Councillors, regulators and stakeholders.

What is so unique about your region?

London’s reputation worldwide as one of the best cities to live, work and open a business is clearly an advantage.  We have within our region organisations and business and political leaders who not only set the agenda locally but nationally and globally as well. 

What does your region / branch offer business leaders?

Our branch offers the best attended events of any branch within the IoD, which are frequently over-subscribed.  Our recent event at BMW Park Lane had to be restricted to members only at one point because of the high demand.  Normally however members are invited to bring guests.  We host a mix of events including free monthly networking events, key note speakers with business leaders such as Nicola Horlick and Sophie Mirman and educational events such as our November event with global PR firm Edelman, where all members will have 10 minutes to discuss their own specific PR issues with a PR guru.  We offer business leaders the opportunity to share expertise, envision the future, innovate, collaborate and grow.

 What are you most looking forward to as IoD Chair in the next 12 months?

I write this a month post the Brexit referendum and despite a change of Prime Minister, the likelihood of a change of Leader of the other main political party, hosts of naysayers and doom mongers, I see a London which is resilient, a stabilisation of the markets and of the pound.  I sense that we are in the trough of a wave.  Opportunities continue to present themselves on a daily basis as businesses adjust and London is still booming.  My sector, property was likely to be the first hit, but surprisingly, enquiries are up and the overseas love affair with London looks set to continue.  I look forward to watching businesses in London continue to adapt and grow and make the most of opportunities which present themselves as a result of the changing political climate in which we find ourselves.

What is your personal business ethos?

Treat people the way you like to be treated, act honestly and with integrity.  

For more information, please contact:

IoD City of London

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