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Clive Wray of Business West

Business advisor awarded OBE

A business advisor who helps Swindon and Wiltshire SMEs grow through international trade has been awarded an OBE.

Clive Wray, director of public sector contracts at Business West was recognised in the New Year’s Honours list, with an OBE for services to small businesses and international trade.

Throughout his long and distinguished career, Clive firstly managed major engineering projects around the world, before putting his knowledge and experience to good use by helping businesses to grow, through enterprise development and international trade.

For the last 20 years Clive has supported SME business development in the South West through various senior roles within Business West and his impact on the West of England and wider South West business community has been significant.

The latter part of his career has focused particularly on international trade and his role in the growth of Business West, which provides business support to approximately 6,000 businesses each year – of which 2,500 are exporters – is testimony to his success.

Phil Smith, managing director of Business West said: “I’m absolutely delighted that Clive has been recognised for his influential work. He has been instrumental in the running of the contracts for UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) and Enterprise Europe Network (EEN); his tireless dedication making a huge impact on the export activities of local businesses.

“Clive’s innovative approach has enabled Business West to double the funding available to assist exporters in the region. He has spearheaded the development of several highly successful ERDF and EU funded international trade projects for the South West, totaling more than £14m in the past five years; money which has been used to enhance and complement Business West’s support for exporters. All of us at Business West are very proud that Clive is to receive this well deserved OBE.”

Commenting on his inclusion in the New Year’s Honour’s list, Clive Wray said: “I’ve been privileged to work with many inspiring individuals and teams within Business West and UKTI and am absolutely delighted with this recognition of our achievements, both on a personal and company basis.”

Elsewhere in the county, Grand Designs presenter Kevin McCloud, who chose Swindon for his first sustainable low-cost housing development, was honoured for services to sustainable living and energy saving with the MBE.

Through his firm Hab, Mr McCloud developed The Triangle in Swindon, a sustainable development of 42 homes for affordable rent to local people registered with Swindon Borough Council, and built to an award-winning design by Glenn Howells Architects.

And Iain Gray, chief executive of the government’s Technology Strategy Board, which is based in Swindon, for services to science, technology and innovation.