Media

Business groups call for more support for firms as Johnson unveils roadmap out of lockdown

February 23, 2021
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Business groups call for more support for firms as Johnson unveils roadmap out of lockdown

The South West’s largest business organisation has said many of its members will be “disappointed” with the government’s roadmap for taking England out of national lockdown. Business West, which runs Bath Chamber of Commerce, said following Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s statement in the House of Commons yesterday afternoon the onus was now on ministers to...

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Virtual trade missions to open up new markets for South West ‘tech-for-good’ firms

February 4, 2021
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Virtual trade missions to open up new markets for South West ‘tech-for-good’ firms

Nearly 50 technology firms from across the South West are to explore potential business deals in the US, India and Singapore as part of a virtual trade mission promoting the region as a ‘tech-for-good’ hotspot. The companies have been selected to take part in Tech 4 Good South West, an initiative launched last September...

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Gloomy South West firms see no short-term relief from Covid-19 but vaccine roll-out lifts spirits of some

January 29, 2021
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Gloomy South West firms see no short-term relief from Covid-19 but vaccine roll-out lifts spirits of some

Business confidence among South West firms has slumped to the lowest in England as the latest lockdown pushes sales down further and puts more pressure on staffing levels. Just 11% for businesses in the region expect trading levels to have returned to pre-pandemic levels by this time next year while one-in-five expect to have...

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Record year for BGF’s regional office, despite Covid-19, with investments reaching £67m

January 23, 2021
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Record year for BGF’s regional office, despite Covid-19, with investments reaching £67m

Investment group BGF’s South West team overcame challenges sparked by the coronavirus pandemic to invest a record amount last year. Some £67m was injected into businesses in 2020 – up on the £37m achieved in 2019 and overtaking the previous record of £50m in 2018.  The new investments take BGF’s total funding in the...

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Business West calls on government to act now and extend business rates relief for struggling firms

January 21, 2021
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Business West calls on government to act now and extend business rates relief for struggling firms

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has been urged to extend business rates relief beyond its March 31 cut-off point to avoid further pressure on firms struggling from lockdown restrictions. The call has come from Business West, the region’s largest business group and the organisation behind the Swindon & Wiltshire Initiative. Businesses in the retail, hospitality and...

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UK post-Brexit trading rules with the EU are complicated, so get advice now, firms are urged

January 19, 2021
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UK post-Brexit trading rules with the EU are complicated, so get advice now, firms are urged

Swindon firms struggling with post-Brexit trade complications are being urged to get expert advice and support by Business West, the region’s largest business organisation. With the UK now outside of the European Union as of December 31, businesses must adhere to new rules and regulations when trading with the EU.  As reports emerge of how...

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Business West looks to wider talent pool for new directors to avoid its board becoming ‘echo chamber’

January 17, 2021
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Business West looks to wider talent pool for new directors to avoid its board becoming ‘echo chamber’

Business West, the region’s largest business group, has broken with its traditional method of recruiting for its board to take on three new non-executive directors. The £10m turnover group, which runs the Swindon & Wiltshire Initiative, said the move was designed to access a wider talent pool that represented the full range of the...

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Export Academy set up to give Swindon firms help selling to overseas markets

January 8, 2021
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Export Academy set up to give Swindon firms help selling to overseas markets

Swindon’s small businesses can access help and advice to grow internationally through a new, free, post-Brexit programme. The Export Academy involves overseas trade experts from the Department for International Trade (DIT) hosting a series of online workshops and events offering advice and support directly to business owners.  The programme has been designed for businesses...

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Former World Bank lead economist to become next chair of alternative regional lender SWIG Finance

January 6, 2021
By
SWIG

Malachy McReynolds, the chair of regional alternative finance lender SWIG Finance, is to step down in March after five years in the role. He will be replaced by Christine Allison, a former lead economist for the World Bank, who has been a non-executive director of SWIG Finance for the past three-and-a-half years. During that...

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New ‘body blow’ for Swindon businesses as UK enters third national lockdown

January 5, 2021
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New ‘body blow’ for Swindon businesses as UK enters third national lockdown

The latest lockdown will be another “body blow” to Swindon firms, coming after the uncertainty caused by Brexit and lost trade in the run-up to Christmas, the region’s biggest business group warned today. Business West, which runs the Swindon & Wiltshire Initiative, said firms that had survived so far with Covid-related support from the...

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