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The Entrepreneurial Exchange

Scotland's Entrepreneurs Take Pride Of Place In Brussels

A photographic exhibition featuring Scottish entrepreneurs will be opened today (29 January) in Brussels by the Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture, Linda Fabiani, following a successful showing at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery last year.

Entrepreneurial Scotland: Portraits of Inspiration, which features some of the most influential figures in Scottish business today, is being mounted at Scotland House - home to Scotland Europe - in Brussels, in association with The Entrepreneurial Exchange.

Marking the official opening of the exhibition, Ms Fabiani said: "Portraits of Inspiration illustrates the diversity of skills, talents, beliefs and philosophies that Scotland produces and shows how Scottish entrepreneurs have played their part in making Scotland the confident, vibrant and modern nation it is today."

John Anderson, chief executive of the Entrepreneurial Exchange, added: "The entrepreneurial culture in Scotland has changed markedly over the last decade in that success is no longer something to be ashamed of. Our work in promoting entrepreneurship and wealth creation in Scotland has led to more balanced and supportive media coverage in recent years as politicians and the media recognise that ambitious growing companies are vital to the future prosperity of Scotland. 

"Of course, we still need to create more companies of substance and scale in Scotland, but today there are plenty of role models, many of whom are featured in this exhibition, demonstrating what can be done with the right mindset and support." 

The exhibition offers a unique insight into some of the faces behind well-known brands, showing these people in a wide variety of settings. Sir Arnold Clark, for example, is photographed with an old-fashioned motor car in the background, while Gordon Baxter stands by his beloved River Spey. Although most of the subjects are Scottish, the exhibition also features several non-Scottish entrepreneurs for whom Scotland has played a significant role in their success.

The Entrepreneurial Exchange recently published the book Entrepreneurial Scotland - Portraits of Inspiration to celebrate Scotland's rich entrepreneurial heritage. Renowned photographers Tricia Malley and Ross Gillespie were commissioned to create photographic portraits of members of The Entrepreneurial Exchange Hall of Fame. These portraits are shown alongside short biographies by Kenny Kemp highlighting the careers and motivations of these highly-respected businesspeople.

With a membership of over 420, heading-up companies employing more than 270,000 people and with a collective turnover of over £18.5 billion,  the Entrepreneurial Exchange is funded by members' subscriptions and its aim is to organise networking events and opportunities where its members can give and receive advice from contemporaries at the top of their fields. Under the motto ‘for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs', the organisation aims to raise and maintain the profile of entrepreneurship in Scotland by highlighting the importance of entrepreneurs to the Scottish economy. Indeed, the members of the Entrepreneurial Exchange Hall of Fame, as featured in the exhibition, are elected by their peers.

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