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The University of Southampton
Southampton Business School

Probing the values of Southampton's maritime industries

The Southampton Business School contributed its global expertise in mapping and analysing supply chains to Solent Maritime, a new group formed by Business Southampton to highlight the importance of maritime companies to the area. Research shows the marine sector contributes more than 25% of Southampton’s annual gross domestic product (GDP), approximately £1.4bn.

The Southampton Business School and Supply Chain Management Group were commissioned to produce a database and supply chain map to identify the activities and linked relationships of the Solent’s maritime businesses and organisations. This revealed commercial opportunities for locally based companies.

Douglas Macbeth, Professor of Purchasing and Supply Chain Management at the Southampton Business School says: “This sector is of key importance within the region’s economy but very few people have a comprehensive insight into all the activities currently underway in and around the Solent.”

Around a hundred companies and businesses were at the launch of the mapping project at the National Oceanography Centre Southampton, including representatives from maritime industries, traditional boat building and the Royal Navy in Portsmouth. The data for the supply chain map will be obtained through an online survey. Business Southampton CEO Sally Lynskey urged maritime sector companies to contribute their details and encourage others involved in the maritime economy to take part as well. “This is a chance for us to gain a clearer picture of what the Solent Maritime economy looks like and the information will help inform our future actions,” she says.

As a further development of this thinking the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute, through Douglas Macbeth and working with its member group GeoData, were commissioned by what is now British Marine to perform a similar exercise looking at the leisure and small commercial boat building sector. Surveys and interview results were presented to the industry in November 2015 and a follow-up survey process was repeated in early 2016. Funding for this study was also obtained from the Department of Business Innovation and Skills.

The maritime sector is of key importance within the region’s economy but very few people have a comprehensive insight into all the activities currently underway in and around the Solent.

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