Vice Principal joins GFirst LEP Retail Business Group

5 February 2016
Image representing Vice Principal joins GFirst LEP Retail Business Group

Gloucestershire College Vice Principal, Peter White, has joined the GFirst LEP Retail Business Group, and plans to draw upon his extensive experience in the sector to change outdated perceptions of careers in retail.

The group has been tasked with identifying challenges facing retail in Gloucestershire, feeding directly into the government-led initiative ‘Retail Pathfinder’. It contributes to the success of retail businesses in Gloucestershire by bringing together the best retail knowledge and operational experience to share great retail practice; devising practical initiatives to support challenges facing retailers; promoting career opportunities and training development within the sector; and being the conduit for new developments, particularly in digital technologies.

A former student of Gloucestershire College himself, Peter’s career includes running his own successful business and developing a sales and marketing career in the food industry; progressing to hold senior positions at Kraft Foods and Booker.

He then returned to Gloucestershire College in 1996 as Director of Customer Services and Marketing, and is now Vice Principal for Marketing, Recruitment and Customer Services; focusing on the growth and development of the College as a successful business and education and training provider.

Peter holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration and, outside of his role at the College, is a Gloucestershire Ambassador, a Fellow of the Institute of Digital and Direct Marketing, and on the Board of Directors for Marketing Gloucester. In 2014 he also gave evidence for the House of Commons Business, Innovation and Skills Committee: The Retail Sector report; a wholesale review of the business rate system resulting from the The Portas Review, a review by Mary Portas into the High Street, commissioned by the government, leading to a redevelopment programme.

The GFirst Retail Business Group is chaired by Nigel Jobson (Supergroup) and other members include Sarah Tyler (GFirst), Martin Quantock (The Growth Hub), Mark Chamberlain (Gloucester Services), Kevan Blackadder (Cheltenham Town Centre Manager), Paula Burrows (Forest of Dean District Council), Pippa Stroud (Stroud District Council) and Jonathan Davies (Cirencester Chamber of Commerce).

Peter said: “I am delighted to have joined the GFirst LEP Retail Business Group and relish the opportunity to promote the variety of careers and training available in the retail sector. Together we want to change perceptions of careers in retail to reflect what they are: dynamic and aspirational. Retail is more than just a Saturday job; it can mean working in merchandising, buying, digital, logistics or marketing. And you must remember that many people who are at the top of the retail game started on the shop floor.

“At Gloucestershire College we deliver a range of apprenticeships in the industry, including retail, customer service, marketing and team leading and management – all of which equip students with the skills and qualifications to go on enjoy successful and lucrative careers in retail.”

Sarah Tyler, Business Sector and Project Development Manager at GFirst, added: “The GFirst retail sector group is delighted to welcome Peter as a member – his skills and expertise will be essential in helping us achieve the vision and objectives of the group. Peter has a clear passion and understanding of retails and we look forward to seeing what he can bring to the group.”

For more information about the group visit www.gfirstlep.com

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We have a lot of experience offering Apprenticeships and work-related training. We have industry-standard facilities and experienced teaching staff which provide the ideal complement to work-based learning.

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