Entrepreneur and business leader Baroness Martha Lane-Fox CBE has been elected the new President of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC).
Baroness Lane-Fox was elected by representatives of the accredited Chamber Network at the BCC’s Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 12 October. She will take up the role, which is unremunerated, with immediate effect.
As the only BCC-accreditated Chamber in the county, Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce welcomes the news that Baroness Lane-Fox will be succeeding Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE as President, whose two-year term came to an end in accordance with the BCC Articles of Association.
As President, Baroness Lane-Fox will work alongside BCC Chair Sarah Howard MBE and Director General Shevaun Haviland to represent the interests of Chamber business communities and trade in a crucial period for the UK.
Baroness Lane-Fox co-founded Europe’s largest travel and leisure website, lastminute.com in 1998. She is a passionate internet activist and was a Digital Champion for the UK from 2009-2013, helping to create the Government Digital Service.
She is a director of Twitter and chair of WeTransfer, and she co-founded and chairs LuckyVoice, which has revolutionised the karaoke industry. She is the Chancellor of the Open University and was also made a crossbench peer in the House of Lords in 2013.
Welcoming Baroness Lane-Fox to the BCC, Chair Sarah Howard MBE said: “Martha brings with her all the qualities that will make her an excellent President. She is creative, insightful, and has a wealth of knowledge that will be invaluable to our Chamber Network.
“She was one of the very first pioneers of the dotcom boom for businesses and has continued to pursue the internet and technology as a force for good throughout her inspiring and impactful career.
“I also wish to thank Ruby for her service to the BCC. She is a passionate advocate for business and has represented the BCC with energy and dedication during challenging times for UK businesses.”
The new BCC President, Baroness Lane-Fox said: “I am very excited to be joining the BCC family and look forward to meeting with Chambers and hearing from businesses across the UK. Having founded and run my own businesses, I know first-hand the challenges firms are up against right now.
“Chambers provide invaluable support to ensure they can expand, invest and trade, and I look forward to helping British businesses thrive.”
Outgoing BCC President, Baroness McGregor-Smith, added: “I am delighted to be handing over this fantastic role to such a strong and committed business advocate. Martha’s experience in the world of business is exceptional, and I know that she will do a brilliant job representing the BCC and the Chamber Network.
“It has been a real privilege to be the President of the British Chambers of Commerce. I wish the BCC and the Chamber Network every success in the future.”