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Uber & Out – What Happens After Start Up?

On Thursday, April 27, 2017, the BABC of Greater Philadelphia Young Professionals Group (YPG) hosted the sixth annual panel discussion and networking event: Uber and Out – What Happens After Start Up? Young professional entrepreneurs are the driving force behind current economic development in our region and around the world.  The creative and information technology sectors are two of the fastest growing industries.  This discussion focused on our region’s entrepreneurial-friendly environment, and how Philadelphia compares to other Smart Cities.  Panelists addressed the Internet of Things and how this topic is shaping not only regional development, but the trajectory of the global economy.  Creative and information technology sectors, innovation, Smart Cities, young professional entrepreneurs, Brexit, and cybersecurity were all part of the discussion.  Jason Gosselin, Partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP, moderated the session and led the panelists through their talk.  It was a free-flowing, dynamic discussion with questions from the audience peppered throughout.

Dimitris Horiatis, Vice-Consul, ICT & Creative Media, Department for International Trade, set the stage. He discussed the creative sector, the largest sector in the UK after financial services.  The UK is setting trends in music, art, and advertising.  The largest global brands are concentrated in London.  The UK spends a higher proportion of its GDP on advertising than other major markets, and leads Europe in digital advertising. Its £8.6bn digital advertising market is bigger than the French and German markets combined and only second to China’s in terms of its share in proportion to the overall advertising market.  Technology is creating new developments in the creative sector.  The crossover generated by VR / AR technology and creative approaches to traditional industries and enterprise is a key UK opportunity.  UK software and tools businesses are creating new platforms for content development.  While hardware manufacture is unlikely to form a key part of the UK VR industry, UK companies are able to deliver software tools and peripherals to support VR content production and experience.  US companies looking to expand internationally choose to look toward the UK first for automotive, consumer goods, multiculturalism, and a large talent pool.  The UK is interested in negotiating a favorable trade deal with the EU – this will create and grow the international talent pool.  Philadelphia is a key market for the UK due to geography/accessibility.  The Greater Philadelphia region boasts a burgeoning tech sector and artistic community, making it a great partner for UK businesses.

Ellen Hwang, Program Manager for Innovation Management, City of Philadelphia and Archna Sahay, Director of Entrepreneurial Investment, Department of Commerce, City of Philadelphia explained the “Smart City” initiative and how the region compares to other areas. They discussed the important economic development impact of start-ups, and the entrepreneurial community, and civic tech organizations in Philadelphia.  Archna highlighted the StartupPHL program – a platform supporting entrepreneurs in the City – and what commerce is doing to enhance this initiative.  Philadelphia is at the forefront and can provide leadership outside of the City.

Jay Jumper, Partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP spoke about emerging companies and venture capital markets. He provided data and other findings from 2016 and talked about the economic outlook for 2017.  Jay’s discussion touched upon market performance, trends and expectations, and the “hot” sectors.  Where and what are the trends for entrepreneurs to seek capital and grow their business?  What does “working smarter” mean and how are emerging companies embracing these trends?  For example, Jay highlighted shared workspace, networking and meet-up groups, online resources and tools.  Jay discussed what’s unique about Philly and the local start-up environment.

Sophie Ding, Senior, Advisory Services – Cybersecurity, Ernst and Young LLP highlighted the key trends in the global cybersecurity market. She talked about Brexit and cybersecurity and what BABC members need to know.  Disruptive technology, like that of Uber for example, creates new risks for businesses and individuals.  Sophie also touched upon her Firm’s entrepreneurial environment, innovation and thought leadership in emerging technologies.

Shari Shapiro, Senior Manager for Public Affairs for Pennsylvania and Delaware at Uber, talked about the City’s adoption of Uber, drivers and riders. She provided interesting international visitor stats for the Greater Philadelphia region.  Uber had riders from 76 different countries last month, and many more during the DNC and other major events.  Shari explained how Uber has met with success and grown through partnerships with local institutions.  She explained how there have been challenges and hurdles in the regulatory environment both at the State and City levels.  Uber and companies like Uber are imploring the City to translate “Philadelphia is open for business” into practice.

While each presenter covered a different topic, a consistency across the board was the importance of education – developing a pipeline of STEM students and ensuring diversity and minority participation. Mentoring future professionals and grooming the up and coming working pool of potential employees will provide a competitive advantage for businesses and our region.

Conversation and questions from the audience could have gone on well into the evening. Jason thanked partnering organizations: Philly Startup Leaders (PSL) and Select Greater Philadelphia.  PSL began in September of 2007 as a handful of entrepreneurs meeting in the back of a neighborhood bar to trade war stories – fast forward and PSL years later has thousands of members.  PSL is a volunteer, grassroots organization of startup entrepreneurs dedicated to helping each other on their entrepreneurial journeys.  PSL provides emotional and practical support to mentor and coach new entrepreneurs.  The group collaborates and connects with other people and organizations who are not themselves entrepreneurial.  Select Greater Philadelphia is the region’s business attraction organization for the 11 counties within the Greater Philadelphia Region.  Select provides comprehensive regional data to help companies, site selectors, economic development teams, real estate professionals and others make informed decisions when relocating to and expanding across the Greater Philadelphia marketplace.  Jason asked Jane Rosenberg, BABC Executive Director to pull the winning business card for four tickets to a Philadelphia Union home game this season.  Lastly, he thanked BABC Marketing & Communications Chairman and long-time board member Ian Cross, proprietor of the Trestle Inn for hosting us.  Jason encouraged attendees to join us for our next program – International Soccer Night at Talen Energy Stadium to watch Philadelphia Union vs. Houston Dynamo on Wednesday, May 17 from 6-9:30 pm.

Attendees networked long after the formal part of the program ended. Everyone enjoyed their signature whiskey sours, while developing new and enhancing old business ties.

Special thanks to Philly Startup Leaders and Select Greater Philadelphia for partnering with us.

Click here to view photos from the event.

Philadelphia Business Journal Article

Opening of “Their Finest”

STX Entertainment’s new British historical drama, THEIR FINEST, opened at the Ritz Five last week and is expanding to additional theatres including the United Artists King of Prussia and Bryn Mawr Film Institute.

Inspiring, funny and genuinely romantic, “Their Finest” is a solid, refreshing crowd-pleaser.” Lindsey Bahr, ASSOCIATED PRESS

“A heart tugging salute to all the impossible dreamers who believe in the magic of the movies” Allan Hunter, SCREEN INTERNATIONAL

‘Their Finest’ delivers in a way that would please the Ministry of Information: it’s rousing and emotional, there are laughs and tears, and it portrays people trying and, mostly, succeeding at being their best selves in the service of their country.” Alonso Duralde, THE WRAP


Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin, and Bill Nighy


Lone Scherfig


Screenplay by Gaby Chiappe

Based on the novel by Lissa Evans


Stephen Woolley, Amanda Posey Finola Dwyer, Elizabeth Karlsen

With London emptied of its men now fighting at the Front, Catrin Cole (Gemma Arterton) is

hired by the British Ministry as a “slop” scriptwriter charged with bringing “a woman’s touch”

to morale-boosting propaganda films. Her natural flair quickly gets her noticed by dashing

movie producer Buckley (Sam Claflin) whose path would never have crossed hers in peacetime.

As bombs are dropping all around them, Catrin, Buckley and a colorful crew work furiously to

make a film that will warm the hearts of the nation. Although Catrin’s artist husband looks

down on her job, she quickly discovers there is as much camaraderie, laughter and passion

behind the camera as there is onscreen.


BREAKING NEWS – UK Triggers Article 50

BAB Statement – please attribute all comments to BritishAmerican Business CEO Jeffries Briginshaw

“Today, the UK Government officially notified the European Commission of its intention to withdraw from the European Union. While the majority of BritishAmerican Business members had not been in favor of leaving the EU, they remain fully committed and ambitious when it comes to their business in the UK and in the transatlantic economy.

“Our members want the UK to remain an attractive place to live, work and invest in. For that to work, it is imperative that the UK makes its relationship with the EU work for business and that Government delivers on its promise to offer the business community a clear and realistic time frame and pathway for an ambitious future relationship with the EU, post-Brexit, right from the start of the negotiations.

“We welcome the UK Government’s efforts to consult and work with the business community in this important time of change, and we look forward to increasing the level of exchange between all departments involved; particularly as the negotiations will need to address complex issues, such as talent mobility, data flows, customs and regulation/ standards. It will be critical to provide clarity on how these issues are addressed during the time of the negotiations and after in order to minimize business disruption and facilitate the transition to the post-Brexit state.

“BritishAmerican Business brings together leading British firms and major US investors, who alone stand for 46% of Foreign Direct Investment in the UK. During these uncertain times, the UK-US economic relationship is, and remains, a significant source of strength and opportunity. To further build on this transatlantic relationship, it is important that the relationship between the UK and the EU delivers a healthy business environment for both the UK and the EU”.

## ENDS ## 

For more information please contact: Tim Horan, Communications Manager
Email:; Tel: +44(0)207 2909878

Human Interest Feature: Paul McConnell

Paul McConnell: The Power of Education and Economic Development

By Alicia Talucci, BABC Coordinator

Paul McConnell is proof of the American Dream. The year is 1974, and Paul is graduating from the University of Delaware. Paul and his brother had just started their business McConnell Brothers Inc. Prior to officially starting their business, the brothers worked together in construction to make money. Upon graduation, they had enough funds to buy their first property, fix it up, and sell it.  Then they bought two more.  Within the first five years of working together, they had renovated more than 100 homes. Since then, Paul has continuously developed properties, and his development projects now total more than five million square feet.

Paul attributes his success to working hard, networking, and staying current. “My success has been based on a lot of people helping me.  I’ve been very fortunate in that regard.”  He says, to be successful in business, you must constantly work with other people that can bring something else to the table.  Developing partnerships, working well, and communicating with others is the key.  At one point in his career, he had more than 100 partnerships.  He is also constantly brainstorming new ideas, and reading as much as possible.  Currently, Paul is dedicated to education and economic development; an area he has promoted and supported during the past several years.

Paul, the current CEO of McConnell Johnson Real Estate LLC, BABC Board and Club Level Member, realizes the importance of uniting education and economic development. Paul has spent the last four decades becoming an inspiration for innovation, especially for aspiring entrepreneurs.  Paul has started several programs for economically disadvantaged youth as well as those with learning differences.  Most recently, his Alma Mater created the Paul and Linda McConnell Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative.  The goal of the initiative is to cultivate the belief that entrepreneurship can lead to a successful career, using education to develop that success, especially in youth.  “Universities are all about the future. When you see the universities connect, and then business, it just creates this great atmosphere for talent, thinking, and doing.”  The Initiative creates opportunities for students to flourish.  Today, there are more than 3,000 students from 35 countries involved in the program.

A prosperous entrepreneur, Paul was inducted into the Delaware Business Hall of Fame in October 2016. The night was not only commemorative to Paul’s success, but special to him as he was inducted with his own mentor, former President of Commerce Bank Delaware, Fred Sears.  Sears not only inspired Paul to get involved in business, but he helped finance Paul’s business.  The two met Paul’s sophomore year of college at his fraternity where Fred was a guest speaker.  As a political science major, Paul helped run Fred’s campaign when he was Director of Economic Development for the City of Wilmington.  The rest is history.

Paul has been a major influencer in both the real estate development and start-up communities in Wilmington and the surrounding areas, founding 1313 Innovation along the way. 1313 Innovation’s mission is to “cultivate an environment of partnership; providing mentoring and education that attracts and develops talent for a stronger community,” a true testament to his goals of cultivating education and economic development.

McConnell Johnson Real Estate LLC joined the BABC in 2011 because the UK is one of Delaware’s largest trading partners. “There are a lot of international businesses in Wilmington.  Flights are easy back and forth, so why not foster those relationships.”  In February 2016, the company became a Club Level Member, and is a major participant in events.  The BABC has provided valuable introductions and networking opportunities for Delawareans in an international setting, and has attracted top talent in the region to open greater opportunities.

While some consider the close proximity to Philadelphia, Washington DC, and New York City a threat, Paul considers Delaware’s proximity an opportunity. “We definitely don’t want to take business from Philadelphia; we want a more collaborative effort.”  With the entertainment, restaurants, and housing boom in Philadelphia, Paul believes the import of talent for jobs and the export of talent for recreation and entertainment aspect can be a challenge.  “70% of our millennials that work here live in Philadelphia.  We have the banking and tech jobs, but we want to have both.”  Along with banking and technology jobs, Delaware provides one of the nation’s top life sciences and pharmaceutical job opportunities.  Together, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey represent more than 80% of the US pharmaceutical industry.

Along with excellent professional opportunities in finance and health sectors, among others, Delaware has been a business-oriented state for the majority of its history. The legal and tax systems are very beneficial toward corporate business.  Delaware boasts a low corporate tax rate at just 8.7%, no sales or personal property tax at the state or local level, and no inventory tax.  The business scene has always been very open to international relations.  Easy access to seaports and airports allow Wilmington’s international trade partners to continue to be successful.  “Most recently, many of the pharma companies and start-ups have come from international (companies).  DuPont was one of the first companies to build a manufacturing plant in China,” explained Paul.  The long standing culture of international partnership as well as the tax and legal advantages given to businesses in the state of Delaware has made Wilmington the ideal place for many businesses to call home.

With Brexit as well as the results of the November 2016 Election, there is a positive future. However, one thing that Paul is sure of is the effect education will have on growth of business and a bright future for the area.  “This region is poised to take off.  We have connected education to our business community.  I think we are more connected today than we have ever been, and I don’t think this election will set us back.  It may accelerate certain change, but maybe people will be open to new ideas,” he explained.  At the university level, the most challenging issue is the high cost of education.  But Paul has an idea for that too, “Maybe there are different programs that can be sponsored by business, or maybe different ways industry can connect to the universities to help defray the crazy cost escalation that has occurred.”

From his work ethic to his philanthropic attitude, no one can deny the impact Paul McConnell has had on those around him. He has worked to build his business from the ground up, and is now looking long term to expand the future for great minds.  Paul’s focus on education is admirable.  He understands the future of business lies with the next generation, and he wants to continue to make Wilmington competitive, but also collaborative with the big cities that surround it.  His constant motivation to reinvent and improve his business where necessary is a lesson for all entrepreneurs.  Paul is a man who sees a bigger picture for local and international business.

The BABC is honored to work with Paul and with McConnell Johnson Real Estate. McConnell Johnson will host our annual Wilmington, Delaware event later this year.  The event brings a high ranking government official, foreign diplomats, and local business leaders together to discuss current global economic affairs, political climate, and social issues and how these factors can affect business on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.  Stay tuned for the program date, speakers, and topic.


2016 Annual Holiday Luncheon – Press

CBS Philly: “Philadelphia Welcomes British Diplomat” 



London is Open and the Opportunities for Business are Great

Friday, September 16, 2016 
11:45 am (CST) – 12:45 pm
“LONDON IS OPEN and the Opportunities for Business are Great”
Click this link on September 16 to access the YouTube live stream.

On the 16th September, the British-American Chapter in Chicago will be hosting a panel discussion “London is Open and the Opportunities for Business are Great” with the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan who will be joined on stage by Rick Waddell, Northern Trust CEO; Sheila Penrose, Chairman of JLL; and leading academic, Azeem Ibrahim.

The Chicago chapter offers you the chance to join them in viewing this panel discussion of exceptional thought leaders by live-streaming the program.



Participants (left to right): Mayor Sadiq Khan, Rick Waddell, Sheila Penrose, and Azeem Ibrahim.

Click Here for More Information

The theme of the discussion will emphasize Mayor Khan’s messages of reassurance post-Brexit vote. However, it will also offer the other panelists an opportunity to explain the current global business climate.


Brexit Decision

On June 23, 2016, the British voted for the UK to leave the European Union.  Other than the immediate shock and ensuing market reaction, it is going to take some time for the real effects of the British exit from the European Union to be felt. Business contracts will be honored and things will evolve slowly. This is unchartered territory for the EU, and plans will be carefully developed. Tourism and commerce are likely to increase as the US dollar will be stronger against the British pound and the euro. The UK is one of our region’s most significant trading partners, and BABC of Greater Philadelphia, serving Southeastern Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey and Delaware will do everything we can to maintain and build that relationship not only with the UK but with all of Europe.

Read more  for the BritishAmerican Business CEO’s statement on the matter.

For local press clippings please click here.

Brexit Press Links

BritishAmerican Business

“Why Brexit May or May Not Matter for Philadelphia,”

“Chill Out Everybody”,

“Italy’s Man in Philly Defies UK Vote: ‘Europe is our home,'”

“What Philly Law Firms are Advising Clients About Brexit,”

Honorary British Consul, Oliver Franklin’s statement on Brexit

“How would Brexit Affect US Economy?”

Howard Silverstone’s Statement on Brexit’s Effect on US

Howard Silverstone’s Interview on NewsWorks


President’s Letter

Dear BABC Members,

We hope you had an enjoyable summer. As we all return to the routines of Fall, we want to alert you to a series of exciting programs the BABC has planned for the upcoming months. First, we hope you will join us for an exclusive business meeting and networking reception in Wilmington, Delaware on September 18th with Sir Peter Westmacott, British Ambassador to the United States, and Alan B. Levin, Secretary, Delaware Economic Development Office. On October 3rd the BABC will host a business panel discussion about corporate sustainability and responsible strategies for global growth at GlaxoSmithKline’s new Double LEED Platinum Certified facility at The Navy Yard in Philadelphia. From November 4-6, 2013, Michael A. Nutter, Mayor of Philadelphia, will be leading a trade mission to the UK and we will host (in conjunction with UK Trade & Investment and Philadelphia government) the official launch reception for the trade mission on October 7th. Companies joining the Mayor’s delegation for this important trade mission will include those actively looking to expand to Europe in key sectors such as life sciences, clean-tech, tech, and financial and professional services.

Toward the end of the calendar year, the BABC is pleased to invite members and friends to celebrate the season at our signature annual holiday luncheon. This year the program will focus on British arts and culture in the region, and we will offer a celebration of Scotland (including a special whiskey tasting), as well as a comedic skit produced by The Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre. There will of course be the traditional “Christmas Crackers” and the opportunity to network and win exciting raffle prizes. Keynote speeches include remarks from Mayor Nutter and Derek Gillman, CEO and President of the Barnes Foundation.

We look forward to welcoming you to our programs, and to hearing from you in between. Please visit the BABC website for all details about current events, and connect with us virtually via social media – Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Don’t forget to visit Flickr. We hope you find your photo from a BABC event, and enjoy browsing through BABC pictures. As always, thank you for your support and interest.


Hope P. Krebs, Esq. President, British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia

To view the rest of the BABC Fall 2013 newsletter, click here.

Upcoming Programs

Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Exclusive Business Meeting & Networking Reception with Sir Peter Westmacott, British Ambassador to the United States and Alan B. Levin, Secretary, Delaware Economic Development Office

Pre-registration by email required to

5:00-7:00 pm
Hercules Plaza
Lower Atrium
Wilmington, DE

Sponsored by McConnell Johnson Real Estate LLC

Thursday, October 3, 2013
Corporate Sustainability: Responsible Strategies for Global Growth


Join the international business community for a dynamic, timely and educational panel discussion about corporate sustainability, and a tour of GlaxoSmithKline’s new Double LEED Platinum Certified facility at The Navy Yard.

Seminar topics will include:
 Critical and material sustainability issues;
 Corporate responses and initiatives;
 How to drive change within organizations and engage and influence the community;
 Financial and accounting aspects; and
 Legal issues and potential risks.

James Margolis, Partner and Leader, Global Sustainability Reporting Practice, ERM

Ray Milora, Project Executive, Navy Yard, GlaxoSmithKline PLC
Rhett D. Workman, Managing Director, Airport Affairs, US Airways
Katherine Neal Blue, ‎Managing Director, Energy & Sustainability, KPMG LLP
Christopher W. Boyle, P.E., Partner and Vice Chair, Environment and Energy Practice Group, Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP

Sponsored by: Drinker Biddle & Reath, Environmental Resources Management, GlaxoSmithKline, KPMG, and US Airways

In partnership with the: Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce, French American Chamber of Commerce, Irish American Business Chamber & Network, Italian American Chamber of Commerce, Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia, and Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce

4:30-7:30 pm
Philadelphia, PA

Monday, October 7, 2013
The Honorable Michael A. Nutter, Mayor of Philadelphia’s International Trade Delegation to the United Kingdom Launch Event

By Invitation Only

This official reception will launch Philadelphia’s business and trade delegation to the UK. Mayor Nutter will recognize the delegates, and welcome Her Majesty’s Consul General Danny Lopez who will discuss how UK-based businesses ensure their success in international markets, and why the best overseas companies select the UK as their global partner of choice.

5:00-7:00 pm
Independence Visitors Center
Philadelphia, PA

Thursday, November 21, 2013
Meet the CEO featuring John Buckley, Chief Executive Officer of Air Liquide USA LLC

Network, dine and meet the CEO of Air Liquide, the world leader in gases for industry, health and the environment. Air Liquide has a presence in 80 countries, including the UK, with close to 50,000 employees.


6:00 PM – 8:30 PM
Sheraton Society Hill Hotel
Philadelphia, PA

Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Annual Holiday Luncheon – Celebrating British Arts & Culture and the Season to be Jolly!


Join us for this very special holiday event. Enjoy networking, a Scottish whiskey tasting, sharing “Christmas Crackers,” a special theatrical presentation by The Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre, and the chance to win exciting raffle prizes.

11:00 am-2:00 pm
The Ritz Carlton
Philadelphia, PA

Presenting Sponsors:
Aberdeen Asset Management and HSBC Bank USA, N.A.

Airline Sponsor:
United Airlines

Corporate Sponsors:
UK Trade & Investment and PricewaterhouseCoopers

Thursday, February 6, 2014
Third Annual New Jersey Networking Event


Join the British American Business Council for a very special dinner event including networking, traditional British pub food and specialty beer provided at The British Chip Shop in Haddonfield, New Jersey.

The British Chip Shop celebrates the culinary traditions of the British Isles, serving authentic fish and chips, soups, stews, healthy salads, pastries, and seasonal favorites.

5:00 pm-7:00 pm
The British Chip Shop
Haddonfield, NJ

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The BABCGP recognizes our Club Level Members:

  • American Airlines
  • Bartlett
  • Cigna
  • Deloitte
  • Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
  • Duane Morris
  • Ernst & Young
  • HSBC
  • KPMG
  • McConnell Johnson Real Estate
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Law Firm of Pepper Hamilton
  • PriceWaterhouseCoopers
  • TD Bank
  • United Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic