Success Stories

During the first 10 years of Business South's evolution, we have notched up quite a few successes ...


When we first had the idea of promoting our region at the inaugural MIPIM UK, it was simply that – an idea. We got Champions from the construction sector around the table along with partners from the public sector and before we knew it we had a private sector led consortium with a £60k budget to promote signifi cant development opportunities on a national and international scale.

Building on the success of 2014, the partnership which was supported by the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership, also attended in 2015 with a £100k budget.





"MIPIM UK has given the Cities of Portsmouth and Southampton the opportunity to work together as the Solent region,to showcase their combined strengths, assets and USPs to the World."

Southampton Master Plan

Investors and developers descended on Southampton on 16 March 2012 for a major sell-out conference showcasing multi-billion pound opportunities in the city. More than 400 delegates drawn from across the UK and including major names in retail, commercial and property development attended the event at St Mary's Stadium organised by Business Solent in conjunction with Southampton City Council and Capita.More than 24,000 new jobs and £3billion of new investment in the city are planned over the next 25 years as part of the new plans for Southampton city centre.

Keynote speaker was international business entrepreneur, and Chairman of Boux Avenue Lingerie and Ryman Stationary, Theo Paphitis and he gave his full backing to the Master Plan.

“The Master Plan is all about generating investment, jobs and growth for the city of Southampton and that's exactly what it will do. If a city doesn't have a plan like this, there's no question in my mind that it will suffer like the proverbial high street.

“It's important you have investment in a city centre and you drive the people where you want them to be – if you don't they will move away,” said Theo Paphitis.

Local Produce ShowLocal Produce Show 

An abundance of business was done at this year’s Business South Local Produce Show.The popular event, now in its eighth year, attracted hundreds of buyers eager to find out more about the delicious products being made in our region.

Everything from delicious cheeses and chocolates to sensational seasonal veg and cordials were exhibited by more than 50 producers at the Ageas Hilton. The event is sponsored by Hampshire Fare and Cavendish Ships Stores, who supply all the cruise liners which operate from Southampton. John Davey, director at Cavendish, spends around £500,000 a year with the small suppliers he has made contact with through the produce show.

Chalk Stream Foods, which now supplies smoked trout to Carnival through Cavendish, said the show had been instrumental in getting their business of the ground.

Founder Hugo Hardman, said: “It’s a phenomenal success – now we have Chalk Stream trout being eaten in Auckland Harbour.”

Paul Cole, Operations Manager at Holiday Inn, Winchester was equally impressed with the quality of the produce on show.

“It was a well organised and fantastic opportunity to meet with local suppliers, to source new inspiration and ideas to develop our offering.”

While Oliver Weeks, Managing Director for the Ideal Collection, said:” It was a very interesting event, showcasing some excellent local producers.”

Leigh-Sara Timberlake, champion director at Business South, said: “We were absolutely delighted by the response to this year’s show – we had more exhibitors than ever and 300 buyers coming through the door.

“Already we are hearing that local producers have secured deals as a result of attending the show.

“This really is an important event in our calendar and we will be starting work on planning for the 2017 Local Produce Show soon.”

“As a new business keen to use and support local producers and suppliers, it was great to meet enthusiastic, passionate, knowledgeable people talking passionately about their products and services.

“I was able to meet with people that I am keen to work with in the future and have sourced some key ingredients,”

Tim Bond, Executive Chef and Managing Director at Relish Canteen

BritanniaCruise Forum

A collaboration led and facilitated by Business South in association with Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, the forum is supported by:

  • ABP
  • Carnival
  • Southampton City Council
  • Hampshire County Council
  • Solent University
  • Destination Southampton
  • Southampton Hoteliers Association
  • West Quay
  • West Quay Cars
  • New Forest National Park
  • Southampton Airport
  • Solent Stevedores
  • Newsquest
  • D&G Media

 "Business South Cruise Forum in Association with Hampshire Chamber of Commerce and sponsored by ABP, Carnival, RCCL and Celebrity Cruises, focuses on the 'shore-side' priorities, opportunities and challenges."

Discover Southampton

Discover Southampton was established in 2013 by Business South in partnership with Southampton City Council. As the official website for the city, it provides information for visitors as well as residents of Southampton, featuring events, activities and more in the city.

The website's purpose is to showcase Southampton as a place to live, visit, study and work, as well as provide one definitive location for information about the city.

Discover Southampton is promoted as the city’s official website by tourism partners, Southampton City Council, local Universities and Colleges, WestQuay Shopping Centre and Southampton Airport.



"The website gets 80,000 visits a month with over 50 establishments listed under accommodation and restaurants."

Cailean HargraveHR Forum

With 280 members in the HR Forum LinkedIn community, this is a tangible illustration of the success of this group. As well as holding seminars and an annual conference, HR professionals from across the region can share best practice and keep up-to-date with fellow practitioners across the south.

A CSR toolkit is also available here and Chairman Geoff Glover has been immersed in the Fairness Commission work in Southampton.




 "Excellent. Great speakers. Inspiring, affirming and challenging. "Met really good people. Geoff did a great job tying the themes together and adding his own sparkle. Business South showing its commitment and ability to make bold and positive things happen," Neil Scotton, Co-founder The One Leadership Preject


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