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Charting the Future Now: European Economic Growth and its Importance to American Prosperity

European Economic Growth & Its Importance to American Prosperity

On Tuesday, March 21, 2017 the British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia partnered with the German, French, Italian and Swedish Chambers of Commerce for a presentation about European economic growth and its importance to American prosperity. More than 40 individuals from the various international groups attended the informative session held at Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP.  Dr. Andrea Montanino, Director, Global Business & Economics and C. Boyden Gray Fellow on Global Finance and Growth for the Atlantic Council spoke in great detail about the European economy and its relationship to the United States.

Dr. Montanino leads the Atlantic Council’s work on global trade, growth, and finance. He formerly acted as executive director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), representing the governments of Italy, Albania, Greece, Malta, Portugal, and San Marino. Before joining the IMF, he was a career officer in the Italian Ministry of Finance from 2006 to 2012. He also previously spent four years (2001-05) at the European Commission in the Directorate General for Economic and Financial Affairs.

Dr. Montanino’s discussion with the European Chambers of Commerce in Philadelphia focused on the importance of restoring European economic growth, safeguarding the European project, and reinvigorating the transatlantic alliance. Dr. Montanino presented European and American expert analysis of the challenges facing Europe and how to address them in the short, medium, and long term.  The Atlantic Council’s Global Business & Economics Program Charting the Future Now publication examines his speaking points in great detail.  Click here to access the complete report.

In a nutshell, Europe and the United States need each another. The geopolitical changes occurring throughout the world must engage both regions to focus not only on short term trade agreements and the economic implications of such negotiations, but must plan for the longer term.  Issues such as Brexit, immigration, energy, etc. are impacting the economic changes we are feeling throughout the globe.  London is the economic hub of European finance, and the UK, EU, and US have been and will continue to be strong partners if we focus on the future, and long term planning is the ultimate goal.

The British American Business Council thanks the German Chamber for inviting us to participate in this timely lunch discussion. We look forward to hosting Dr. Montanino back to the region in the early Autumn of 2017 to provide an update on Brexit and the economic relationship between Europe and the United States.  We hope you will join us for this program.  More information to follow shortly.

Click here to view photos.

2017 Philadelphia Classical Guitar Festival Opening Concert: David Russell

When: Saturday, April 08, 2017 at 7:30 PM

Mandell Theatre, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA

The Philadelphia Classical Guitar Society presents the 2017 Philadelphia Classical Guitar Festival Opening Concert featuring David Russell.

David Russell is a Grammy award winner in 2005 for his CD AIRE LATINO, in the category of best instrumental soloist in classical music.  He has an honorary Doctorate in Music by the University of Arizona in Tucson in 2014, and is a  world renowned for his superb musicianship and inspired artistry, having earned the highest praise from audiences and critics alike. In recognition of his great talent and his international career, he was named a Fellow of The Royal Academy of Music in London in 1997.

For more information, please click here.



The BABC of Greater Philadelphia serves the tristate region – Southeastern Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey and the State of Delaware. There are 22 BABC chapters throughout the world, with more than 2,000 members.  Our mission is to “connect the dots” – facilitate introductions between executives to assist in building valuable business ties.  On Tuesday, February 14, 2017 the BABC collaborated with corporate member Almac Group to bring club level member American Airlines’ cargo team executives for a presentation and private tour of Almac’s US headquarters state of the art facility in Souderton, PA.

The Almac Group is a privately held contract development and manufacturing organization that provides an extensive range of integrated services globally to companies within the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors. Almac’s global headquarters are based in Craigavon, Northern Ireland and has additional operations throughout the UK, Ireland, across the US (Pennsylvania, North Carolina and California) and Asia (Singapore and Tokyo). The organization has been established for almost 50 years and is currently celebrating its twentieth anniversary in Pennsylvania now employing approximately 1,200 people in the State and almost 5,000 worldwide.

Mark Weir, Almac’s US Group Financial Controller has been actively involved with the BABC since he assumed the role with the Company more than five years ago. Jane Rosenberg, Executive Director of the BABC worked with Mark to execute this informative meeting and tour.  Mark provided a comprehensive overview of Almac’s history, presence throughout the world, and US operation.  His presentation laid the framework for the tour of the physical plant.  George Tiger, Vice President, Global Business Development, Almac’s Clinical Technologies Business Unit talked about the Company’s most recent launch (late January) of the Next Generation Temperature Management software – TempEZ™.  This product offers unrivalled end-to-end drug product visibility, blazing a trail for innovation in this industry.

Almac delivers the most comprehensive range of integrated drug development services available to the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical industry. Services range from R&D, companion diagnostics, biomarker discovery and development, API manufacture, formulation development, clinical trial supply, IRT through to commercial-scale manufacture.  Sir Allen McClay (Allen, as he preferred to be called) founded his first company, Galen Ltd, in 1968.  Galen floated on the stock market in 1997 and subsequently became Northern Ireland’s first £1 billion company. However, around the year 2000 the direction of the company changed and took a different path to Allen’s vision. Allen realized his substantial shareholding and formed, with his personal wealth, the organization we now known as Almac.  As part of Allen’s generosity he established the McClay Foundation as a charitable institution.  The Foundation has already surpassed donating more than £20 million to enhance the research capabilities at the Queen’s University Belfast.  Allen typically referred to the organization he built as the “Almac family.”  Despite operating across the Atlantic Ocean from the parent company, the Almac executives we met attested to the greatest tribute that Almac, as a company, will pay to Allen continuing with his passion and delivering on his vision: “To be the leader in the generation of superior solutions for the advancement of human health.”

Mark Rohlfing, Vice President of Operations, Almac Clinical Services spent a couple of hours guiding us through the facility, demonstrating product lifecycle from laboratory testing, through to packaging and shipping, to the end user. Our visit, starting in the Boardroom and ending in the storage/shipping division, literally walked us through product development.  The beautiful campus, employing more than 1,000 people is just a few years old.  Each time we crossed paths with an Almac employee, across various levels and business units, they were just as kind looking, happy and cheerful as the Irish countryside canvases lining the walls.  The bright, new, modern buildings make effective use of all space and give it a European feel right here at home in Pennsylvania.  The BABC is honored to work with companies like Almac and American Airlines with operations spanning the globe.  It is our job to facilitate meetings that enable our members to create worthwhile connections to enhance business.

Click here for photos.



CBS Local- “British Prime Minister To Visit Philadelphia”


Philadelphia Inquirer


The Telegraph – “Theresa May and Donald Trump To Hold Talks On Trade Deal”

CNN – “Theresa May To Visit Trump In Washington”

ABC- “Trump To Discuss His Agenda In Center City Today”


Embassy Press Release

23 January 2017


The Prime Minister is expected to be the first world leader to hold face to face talks with President Trump when she visits the United States later this week.

President Trump has invited the Prime Minister for talks in the Oval Office on Friday. This will primarily be an opportunity to get to know one another and to establish the basis for a productive working relationship. The leaders are expected to discuss a number of the most pressing global issues, notably tackling terrorism, Syria, relations with Russia and cooperation in NATO.

The Prime Minister and President will also discuss how we can deepen our already huge economic and commercial relationship to the benefit of both of our countries, including our shared ambition to sign a UK-US trade deal once the UK has left the EU. Trade between both countries is already worth over £150bn, and the US is the single biggest source of inward investment to the UK.

As a result of the efforts the UK Government has made to establish strong links with the new administration, the Prime Minister has also been invited to become the first serving head of state or government outside the US to address the annual congressional Republican retreat, when it gathers for its 30th anniversary in Philadelphia on Thursday.

The Prime Minister is set to address Republicans from both the House of Representatives and Senate who are gathering in Philadelphia to discuss their priorities for the coming year. It will provide a platform for the PM to set out how we want to advance the special relationship in the coming years and work together on a number of shared challenges.





Club Level Feature: Pepper Hamilton LLP

Pepper Hamilton LLP — A Commitment to Diversity

Pepper Hamilton LLP, a multipractice law firm with more than 450 lawyers nationally, provides corporate, litigation and regulatory legal services to leading businesses, governmental entities, nonprofit organizations and individuals throughout the nation and the world. Its diverse group of lawyers includes women, attorneys of color, members of the LGBT community and their allies, and attorneys with disabilities.

The firm is committed to advancing diversity and inclusion and works continuously to expand and promote opportunities for its lawyers and staff. These firm wide efforts — which are led by Partner in Charge of Diversity Kassem L. Lucas — include several affinity groups that offer support and programming for Pepper’s diverse community. These groups include the African-American/Black Affinity Group, Pepper Pride, the Veterans Group, the Pepper Latina/o Caucus and the Women’s Initiative (WIN).

The last year has been a particularly exciting one for WIN, which selected new leaders — partners Stephanie Pindyck Costantino, Yvonne M. McKenzie and Sara B. Richman — to continue WIN’s tradition of recruiting, promoting and supporting Pepper’s female attorneys. Some of WIN’s recent activities include attending the Pennsylvania Conference for Women with Pepper clients, sponsoring the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Lemon Run, and authoring an article on the under-representation of women in law for The Legal Intelligencer.

WIN is just one example of Pepper’s leading role in advancing and supporting women in the legal industry. From the firm’s first female partner, elected in 1960, to Nina M. Gussack being named as the first female chair of the Executive Committee in 2007, Pepper’s women have been trailblazers in taking on leadership roles in the firm while providing exceptional service to their clients. In 2016, the firm took another step forward by electing its first all-woman class of new partners and of counsel. In November, Abigail A. Hazlett (White Collar Litigation and Investigations), Shirley R. Kuhlmann (Corporate and Securities), Judith L. O’Grady (Health Effects Litigation) and Nilufer R. Shaikh (Corporate and Securities) were elected to the partnership, and Tracey E. Diamond (Labor and Employment) and Jessica A. Rickabaugh (Health Effects Litigation) were elected of counsel. For more information please visit www.pepperlaw.com.

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.


New Members: Winter 2017

James William Rinier
Assistant Clinical Professor of Accounting
Drexel University
3141 Chestnut Street
LeBow College of Business, Room 924
Philadelphia, PA 19104
P: 215-571-3640
E: jwr429@drexel.edu

Kathy Wyrofsky
International Products Corporation
201 Connecticut Drive
Burlington, NJ 08016
P: 609-386-8770
E: kwyrofsky@ipcol.com

President’s Letter: Winter 2017



Dear BABC Members and Friends,

Happy New Year! As we say in my trade, I hope 2017 is off to a flying start.  I am pleased to report the BABC ended both the old and started the new calendar years by giving back to the community.  Our Annual Holiday Luncheon raised funds for the Bicentennial Bell Park restoration, and on Martin Luther King Day our Young Professionals Group hosted a service project at Kingsessing Community Center in West Philadelphia.  Community connections are very important to us.  We are part of a vibrant, City culture, and enjoy working with people from all sectors to enhance our ties and make valuable contributions locally and abroad.

The BABC network works diligently to deliver worthwhile educational programs, networking events and information. Did you know the US and UK are each other’s largest investors?  Together we have approximately $1 trillion invested in each other’s economies.  Our Chapter is part of the biggest transatlantic business network of more than 22 organizations and more than 2,000 member companies based in major business centers throughout North America and the UK.  Members include the world’s largest multinationals as well as thousands of middle market and privately held entities across industry sectors.

BABC London is publishing a series of fact sheets for the UK’s top trading regions in the US. The Philadelphia file was the first one completed.  Please click here  to see the report. It is good to see that the region our chapter covers is one of the most vibrant US-UK trading areas in the country, underscoring the importance of our work in the BABC.

BABC members receive access to the who’s who of international business locally and internationally; discounted tickets to events; speaking opportunities; thought leadership pieces; opportunities to connect with UK government officials, and to develop business ties with leading professionals, among other benefits. I encourage you to read this newsletter for a recap of all recent past and upcoming activities.  If you are not a member and would like to learn more, please contact us.

Thank you and very best wishes for a prosperous 2017.

Rhett Workman Signature

Rhett D. Workman

President, British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia


International Soccer Night



Join the global business community for a VIP evening of networking, food, spirits, and soccer at Talen Energy Stadium, the home of Philadelphia Union. The first 20 guests to arrive will have the unique opportunity to go down to the field level for pre-match warm-ups. Ticket price includes, networking, food, beverage and VIP, reserved seating to watch the Philadelphia Union versus Houston Dynamo match.

Date: Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Time: 6:00 – 9:30 pm
Location: Talen Energy Stadium, Chester, PA

Hosted by:


Sponsor (To Date):



Chilean Logo



The 2017 Transatlantic Conference

transatlantic conf


Following the most recent Conferences in New York and London, the 2017 Transatlantic Conference will be held in Chicago on 10-11 May 2017.  The two-day Conference will explore the 2017 theme “Navigating the New World,” focusing upon evolving opportunities as the United States, Canada, and Europe absorb changes in the realities of economies, trade, borders, and governance.



Video of Interview with Tom Stevens


For more information such as sponsors, travel arrangements, and full schedule, please visit the Transatlatic Conference website.



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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