Managing Director of Oxford Bus Company and three Go Ahead subsidiary companies in the Thames Valley, Phil Southall, has been appointed the President of the Oxfordshire Chamber of Commerce.
Having played a crucial role on the Chamber Council for more than four years, he is also an active member of several business led committees and boards, both within Oxfordshire and across the Oxford to Cambridge growth corridor.
Commenting on his appointment Phil said: “Oxfordshire is one of only three counties that is a net contributor to the exchequer, with over 20,000 new jobs created since 2011, and an economy growing by nearly 4 per cent each year since 2006.
“It’s important that our members feel that they are contributing to policy and we identify a robust set of local priorities that can be progressed alongside the over-arching asks of the Thames Valley Group and the British Chambers of Commerce generally.
“An effective Chamber Council is one that gives its members a strong and effective voice. Working together we can identify common ground and improve business objectives.
“One of my first actions is to hold a workshop on the future of transport. There are many exciting developments coming forward including ‘Mobility as a Service’ where citizens can subscribe to use different transport modes for a single price. Younger members of our society either can’t afford to or simply don’t want to own a car, so alternatives must be developed for them. We also have technology evolving from petrol / diesel cars to either zero emission and / or autonomous vehicles and are keen to show how these developments can improve the quality of life for residents.
“Skills shortages at all levels and the cost of living are also major issues for our members. Using technology to make people’s lives better and ensuring that it is sustainable and affordable is also important.”
Sara Parris, Corporate Business Manager for Oxfordshire, further added: “Fantastic news that Phil has agreed to take up the role of President. Looking forward to working alongside him to progress our local policy priorities and ensure companies continue to thrive over the coming years.”