v THE NEXT HERALD IS OUT ON 4TH JANUARY v 7th December 2023 • The HERALD • Page 67 ASK A PROFESSIONAL Collaboration the Key for South’s Businesses e pulse of business in the Central South was checked as more than 200 leaders and decisionmakers from across the region gathered for the in uential Business South Annual Conference. A powerful line-up of speakers included Paul Johnson, Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, Henri Murison, CEO of the Northern Powerhouse, Emma Hickman, Deputy Director for Subnational Statistics at ONS and a host of regional political leaders. Collaborating for higher productivity was the message coming loud and clear from Henri Murison as he outlined the priorities for the recently launched Growing Together Alliance that includes Business South. Business South has joined with ve leading employers’ groups to create a new alliance, Chaired by Henri, to strengthen cooperation and drive good growth across di erent parts of the country. e alliance will work together to leverage each region’s particular strengths. He also spoke of the Speakers at the Business South Annual Conference which was attended by more than 200 leaders and decision-makers from across the region value of collaboration, how devolved local government would make economic progress easier, the need for investment and innovation to increase productivity and why improved public transport and better housing was key to a successful future. e conference, at the Hilton Hotel, Ageas Bowl, Southampton, was hosted by BBC South’s Alastair Fee and was also addressed by Rod Bransgrove, chair of Hampshire Sport & Leisure Holdings Group. The occasion also saw the launch of the Maritime and Transport Careers Programme, a pioneering business-led scheme backed by a host of major industry names that is promoting the wealth of jobs available in the maritime and transport sectors. Commenting on the day, Leigh-Sara Timberlake, Group CEO for Business South, said she was delighted more than 200 business leaders had chosen to attend. She said: “Our annual conference is a key date in the business diary for the region and our lineup of speakers did not disappoint and will help set the agenda for the future. It was brilliant to hear from Henri Murison and we are very much looking forward to playing an active role in the Growing Together Alliance. Once more this illustrates that together we are stronger.” The conference was sponsored by Allica Bank, Kier, Morgan Sindall, University of Southampton, AtkinsRealis and Hilton Hotels.