Chairman takes on Business Link Yorkshire head role

Sheffield Forgemasters' chairman Tony Pedder has been appointed chairman of Business Link Yorkshire.

Mr Pedder, who has more than 30 years experience in the steel industry with British Steel/Corus plc, holds a number of non executive directorships and adds to these achievements by taking his credibility, expertise and local knowledge to the Business Link Yorkshire board.

His first involvement with Forgemasters came in 2005 after offering voluntary support to the management team with regard to achieving the management buy out and he became chairman of the company in October 2005.

In his part-time role at Forgemasters, Mr Pedder works closely with fellow group directors, Graham Honeyman and Peter Birtles, in determining the future direction of the group companies and helping in all aspects of managing its affairs.

He said: "I see my new role as a fantastic and exciting challenge to help achieve the greatest possible success for the region's entrepreneurial businesses.  My own broad business background means I will bring different approaches and skills to complement the great work being done by Business Link Yorkshire."

Helen West, chief executive officer of Business Link Yorkshire, said: "We have three critical goals - to help more businesses grow and develop through using our services, to win and retain the support of our many partners in the region and ensure the quality of information and support to businesses.

"Tony's breadth of experience in all these areas means he brings credibility, expertise and local knowledge to our board.  It is a great compliment to attract someone of Tony's calibre to lead us."

Mr Pedder is also chairman of Sheffield NHS Primary Care Trust and deputy chairman of regeneration company Renaissance South Yorkshire Ltd. Last year he was appointed a deputy lieutenant of South Yorkshire.

Business Link Yorkshire is a central point of free information and advice for all businesses in the region, no matter what their size or stage of development. Its free events programmes, on a range of inspirational and practical topics, are run in towns and cities throughout Yorkshire and Humber.