James Caan appointed as co-chair of Ethnic Minority Taskforce

Dragon’s Den star James Caan has been appointed as the new co-chair of the Department for Business’s Ethnic Minority Taskforce.

The appointment was made by business secretary Lord Mandelson following the sixth meeting of the taskforce yesterday (15 January). The taskforce aims to foster growth among firms owned by black and minority ethnic people, and boost economic participation by entrepreneurs.

Caan’s responsibilities will include providing a strategic direction to the taskforce and opening up discussions with banks and financial institutions on ways in which the government can better support ethnic minority business owners.

Mandelson said: “It is more important than ever that we create an environment where anyone with ambition, passion and a good idea – no matter what their background – can succeed.”

Caan added: “The entrepreneurial sector of the economy has always been where my passion lies and to which the ethnic minority group makes a very valuable contribution. I am looking forward to using the same skills that I apply across all my business ventures to deliver tangible results.”

Caan will work alongside Tom Riordan, chief executive at regional development agency Yorkshire Forward, who was appointed as co-chair when the taskforce was created in 2007.

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