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JAMPRO appoints new president

Published:Friday | July 19, 2013 | 3:33 PM

Former trade commissioner of the Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO), Diane Edwards has been appointed president of the national investment and trade promotion agency, effective September 1.



In making the announcement to JAMPRO’s management and staff, board chairman Milton Samuda recognized the incoming president as a key attainment for the agency, given her impressive career and global experience, the organization said in a release.



Edwards is a former trade commissioner for JAMPRO in New York, United States; Brussels in Belgium, and London, England.



The release said she successfully managed product launches of Jamaican food brands into mainstream markets and conceived and negotiated substantial European Union funding for the innovative ‘Target Europe’ Trade Development Programme, an initiative that positioned Jamaican products in the European market and subsequently evolved into the five-year private sector development programme.



Equally adept at investment promotions, the incoming president also commenced negotiations with foreign investors Riu and Iberostar, which led to investments in Jamaica.



She was also instrumental in the development of Jamaica’s garment sub-contracting and information and communications technology industries.



Edwards is rejoining the agency after completing a tenure as general manager and director of J. Wray & Nephew UK Limited, where she led the organisation to profitability and successfully grew the UK company’s turnover by 77 per cent for the past 10 years, the release said.



Under her leadership, J. Wray and Nephew (UK) expanded well beyond its small beginnings in the Jamaican ethnic market into a national distributor and brand builder of premium products.



The company also successfully negotiated exclusive UK distribution contracts for spirits brands from other European countries, as well as product listings in more than 1,500 bars, restaurants and hotels.



It also secured listings with the top five UK grocery retailers – Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose, Morrison and Asda – as well as luxury retailers such as Harrods, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols.



The JAMPRO chairman also announced the appointment of other executives of the agency, namely Robert Scott, vice president of trade and business development, and Shullette Cox, vice president of corporate planning and development.



Wendy Lyttle, vice president of finance, MIS and administration, who is currently interim president of JAMPRO, and Claude Duncan, vice president of investment promotion, continue in their substantive posts.



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