New MD announced for economic development organisation

Brian Archer has been appointed managing director of economic development organisation Business Durham, part of Durham County Council, where he will build on existing relationships with partners and stakeholders

Brian, from Leeds, is the former business development director for a FTSE 250 company, has been chief executive of two Business Links and was recently commercial director of Leeds City College Group. He has also run his own business which gives him the insight to understand the needs of start-ups and SMEs.

Brian said: “I believe there’s a wider role for business to not only generate prosperity but to change lives by creating new opportunities and raising aspirations. Business Durham is already making that happen and I look forward to supporting and leading the team as they continue to find innovative ways to help businesses in County Durham thrive and grow. I see this role as an exciting opportunity to make a difference.”

Cllr Carl Marshall, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for economic regeneration, said: “Brian is an outstanding candidate with a wealth of experience in different roles across the country, spanning various sectors at director level. His experience of running his own business will also be particularly beneficial when working to promote the interests of SMEs in the county.

“We are very much looking forward to working with him.”

Business Durham works with more than 1000 businesses across County Durham every year. The organisation has helped many companies invest in the county, including Hitachi Rail and ResQ, and has invested more than £16m in its business accommodation. Recent investments include the multi-million pound expansion of the North East Technology Park (NETPark) in Sedgefield, which is managed by Business Durham.

Brian takes over the MD role from Dr Simon Goon, who left earlier this year to take up a job as chief operating officer at Synoptica, an early-stage artificial intelligence company in Seaham with its HQ in Guildford, Surrey.

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