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BusinessMatters Quarterly Magazine of West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber of Commerce


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West Cheshire & North Wales Chamber of Commerce

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Bluestones recruitment is an employment agency that specialises in permanent and temporary roles from a broad range of commercial sectors.

T: 01244 329011 E:

Based in the North-West, we are ideally situated on the motorway network for easy access to Cheshire, Merseyside, Lancashire and North Wales.

Our industry knowledge allows us to operate on a national basis for our clients. We offer our services to the following locations: East Anglia, East Midlands, International, London, North East, North West, Northern Ireland, Scotland, South East, South West, Wales, and West Midlands.

Through our core values and strong work ethic we are able to bring clients and candidates a high level of professionalism and a service tailored to individual needs. We have access to the markets leading real-time recruitment website in order to display the hottest roles and attract the most proactive candidates.

We believe that the key to success is open communication. In order to give the highest levels of satisfaction for all parties concerned we focus on not only our candidates’ key skills, but on matching their personality with the culture of the organisation.


This we believe means that the relationship between employee and employer will have longevity and be successful. So if its success you are looking for and recruitment service that is tailored exactly to your needs then bluestones recruitment is the way forward!

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04 The Brazil Effect Real Time Information Set 06 For Launch

07 24 HOURS WITH .......

in HS2 Will 08 Investment Create Business Confidence

Chamber of Commerce Riverside Innovation Centre 1 Castle Drive Chester CH1 1SL Telephone: 01244 669988 Fax: 01244 669989 Registered Company No. 173634



Encouraged to 09 Businesses Try Trade Missions

10 GETTING STARTED 15 AS I SEE IT TO? Untidy Inbox? How 19 HOW to Clean it Quickly…

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Advertising helen Smith Telephone 0845 884 2337 Contributing Editor John Dean & Francis Griss


Distinctive Publishing or West Cheshire & North Wales Chamber of Commerce cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies that may occur, individual products or services advertised or late entries. No part of this publication may be reproduced or scanned without prior written permission of the publishers and West Cheshire & North Wales Chamber of Commerce.

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Brazil Business Factfile Population: 194m Area: 8,500,000 km2 Capital City: Brasilia Official Language: Portuguese Brazil is too big a market to ignore. It is the fifth largest country in the world, has one of the world’s most rapidly developing economies and a GDP per head that is greater than India or China. It has natural resources in abundance, a developed industrial base, high standards in scientific research and substantial human capital.

The Brazil Effect UK companies are benefiting from the varied commercial opportunities available across all sectors in Brazil according to a recent Brazilian Attractiveness Survey. Brazil is one of the most dynamic and innovative countries in the world and one of the biggest economies in terms of GDP. As one of the BRIC-M nations and South America’s leading power, its presence on the world stage has been boosted in the last 10 years, attracting exporters and investors from all over the globe. Indeed, the present Brazilian government has been proactively working to attract inward investment and partnerships by visiting target countries and receiving foreign delegations. While Brazil’s export growth may have slowed in the last year, its internal market remains buoyant. International car manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies and technology firms have tapped into the myriad opportunities it presents. UK business is no exception in this regard. In August, Ernst & Young’s first annual Brazilian Attractiveness Survey showed that the UK is now the second largest investor into Brazil after the US. The business services sector in Brazil attracted the largest number of projects (17 in total, 38% of total UK FDI projects) from the UK in 2011. However, the most lucrative UK investments, in terms of value and job creation, were in the mining and metals industry, boosted by the US$5bn (£3.1bn) investment by Mir Steel UK into a joint venture with Cosipar, the Brazilian pig iron producer, in 2011.

Prospects in Brazil are set to intensify in the coming years thanks to two major global sporting events: the World Cup in 2014 and the Rio Olympics in 2016. As such, swathes of infrastructure are now needed in Brazil from stadia to airports and ports, along with the external expertise to plan, deliver and build the huge numbers of individual projects that are on the drawing board or already underway. In fact, it’s estimated that the World Cup and the Olympics present opportunities for UK companies worth an estimated £47bn. Take the north east’s Pernambuco state, which has 14 planned new cities alone. No wonder this is the country’s fastest-growing region, requiring architects, urban mobility planners, sustainable construction experts and construction companies. Ed Hudson, Head of Brazil Business Services at Ernst & Young said: “The overall outlook for Brazil in terms of the prospects for closer ties and collaboration with UK business, leading to greater investment from the UK, looks very positive indeed. “Progressing some of these projects is not without its challenges. But if Brazil can start to address and introduce some of the reforms that both UK and global investors say are required, the opportunities are tremendous.”

Economic reform in the 1990s brought stability to the country’s finances, ending a history of boom and bust where high inflation and foreign debt hampered its development. Today, Brazil is the world’s sixth largest economy and by far the largest in South America, representing over 50% of regional GDP. The UK enjoys a strong and historic trading relationship with Brazil, stretching back over 200 years. Today, Brazil remains the UK’s most important trading partner in Latin America, with bilateral trade almost reaching £5 billion in 2010. The UK is also one of the largest investors in Brazil.

Opportunities include:

n Creative industries: digital media, music, publishing, design, fashion, sporting events n Environmental industries: environmental management systems, adoption of international export standards, national policy on solid waste n Life sciences: high-end medical devices, e-health and remote diagnostics, medical education and training n Mass transport n Fire and security: World Cup 2014, 2016 Olympic Games, exploration of pre-salt oil fields n Education: training and retraining, ICT equipment, distance learning, management and business MBAs n Consumer goods: food and drink, cosmetics, luxury goods, fashion n Leisure: sport, musicals, museums and attractions n Financial: insurance and reinsurance, public private partnerships, carbon market, venture capital, private equity, legal services. For more information on exporting to Brazil, contact Fabiana Andrade, UKTI’s Brazilian Contact on

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your community needs you! BitesizeNews Would you or your business like to get more involved and support your local community? SkillShare are looking for people and organisations across West Cheshire able to share their knowledge, time and expertise to contribute to local voluntary and community groups. The organisation has already supported over 50 projects in West Cheshire with over 100 local businesses volunteering to get involved. It has provided help with legal work, web optimisation, event management, health and safety support, marketing work and much more.

The new National Fraud Reporting Centre and service Action Fraud is now live. The service was set up to make fraud reporting easier and to provide the right advice and guidance to ensure people and businesses get the relevant support. Information obtained from all frauds is fed into the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, helping to build a more effective profile of those committing fraud. Find out more at

Time for Delivery

SkillShare has a particular need for businesses who can offer assistance with marketing, business planning, website design and support.

Commenting on the Government’s mid-term review in January, John Longworth, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said: “it’s fair to say ministers know they have the consistent support of business when it comes to making the tough decisions that underpin growth. But the policy changes needed are not just a temporary fix while we try and get our economy back on track. They are also critical to the long-term, sustainable growth the UK needs to remain competitive and a key global player.”

People and businesses can get involved by donating their time through employer supported volunteering, their skills through expertise or mentoring and resources through materials, equipment or services. Joanne Walton, SkillShare Coordinator said: “SkillShare is a great way for businesses to support their local community and make a real difference. The local business community in West Cheshire has experts with amazing skills to offer.

BCC Conference

“SkillShare is not only saving voluntary and community groups a tremendous amount of money, it is enabling them to build their capacity to deliver essential frontline services in the local community. It is unlikely that groups could achieve the same result so quickly without Skillshare, which is why we need the support of local businesses more than ever.” SkillShare aims to match you with a suitable project, subject to availability. Any collaboration will be agreed in advance and we will only match you to a project with your permission. If you have some time and would like to offer your support to a local voluntary or community group to help them deliver their vital work, please contact Joanne Walton at Chester Voluntary Action on 01244 316587 or emailing

Action Fraud Launched

There’s still time to secure your place for the BCC’s Annual Conference on March 14th at Central Hall, Westminster. Access to finance, and the opportunities presented by international trade, will be amongst the topics discussed. The conference will give you the chance to network with representatives from the Chamber network, as well as meet like-minded business leaders. With speakers including senior cabinet and opposition party figures, you can also ensure that your views are represented. Visit for details. Joanne Walton, SkillShare Coordinator

SkillShare is a great way for businesses to support their local community and make a real difference. The local business community in West Cheshire has experts with amazing skills to offer. to Welcome our world Conferencing Suite & Rooms Quote BMCOC12 for Chamber Rates

Businesses Want Change on Europe BCC has called for the Government to establish a new relationship with the EU that takes into account the needs of businesses, after they performed a study showing 52% felt Eurozone uncertainty could impact their organisation in 2013. John Longworth said: “Inaction on Europe favours only global companies and the Brussels elite, while sleepwalking towards the exit door without a plan favours no one at all.”

please contact our booking team on: 01248 388088 for further information



outstanding Business Matters

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Planned succession for business success. Planning for our uncertain futures is essential. In business we have insurance policies,business plans and marketing plans. In our personal lives we have insurance, pensions and savings. But ask any solicitor, HR expert or accountant and they will tell you that although succession planning is just as essential it is often left to the last minute and is usually woefully inadequate. At the Wales Co-operative Centre we are able to offer support to business owners who would like to investigate succession planning through employee ownership. Employee ownership offers a viable succession approach, ensuring that your business is passed on to a team of people who know it and have a vested interest in its future success- your employees. Employee Ownership is a flexible solution that can meet most withdrawal expectations. It can

support both long and short term exit strategies and can allow you to stay involved with the business over a planned period to help train and develop staff and ensure business continuity. Employee ownership has also been proven to drive business growth and innovation through enhanced employee engagement with the business. Planned succession can lead to business success. The Wales Co-operative Centre is holding a series of breakfast seminars in North Wales on the 11th (Galeri, Caernarfon) and 12th April (Ramada Plaza, Wrexham). Call 0300 111 5050 or see the website www.walescooperative. org for more information. Rhian Edwards is Manager of the Business Succession Team at the Wales Co-operative Centre.

real Time information Set for launch Employers are being urged by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to get ready for major PAYE changes. In April 2013, employers will have to start sending PAYE returns electronically using Real Time Information (RTI) enabled payroll software, to HMRC each time they pay their employees as part of routine payroll processes. The returns will include details of all employees’ pay, tax and deductions. Reporting PAYE in real time will allow HMRC to receive information on employees’ earnings, tax and National Insurance contributions as they are paid, rather than at the end of the year. Three key steps when preparing for RTI: n Visit the HMRC website at www. for comprehensive information about RTI n Acquire new or updated payroll software, employers need to talk to their payroll software provider or their payroll service-provider (if they have one) about this n Start checking and updating employee information. It’s vital that the information employers have about their employees is accurate and up to date.

Even though the introduction of RTI should make it easier, administering your payroll can be time consuming and burdensome. Ellis & Co can relieve you of this by providing a comprehensive and confidential payroll service. If you have any questions regarding RTI or payroll, please contact Donna Bennett at Ellis & Co on 01244 343504.

Reporting PAYE in real time will allow HMRC to receive information on employees’ earnings, tax and National Insurance contributions as they are paid, rather than at the end of the year.

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“We’re keen to grow both organically and through acquisition, which is good as I like business development. Dee 106.3 celebrates its 10th birthday in March, we’re in the process of launching a new DAB station covering 1.8m adults in Merseyside, North Wales and West Cheshire, a new recruitment website and have ongoing discussions with other operators.”

Chris Hurst

Chief Executive Dee 106.3

Working in a world where nothing stands still and the landscape can change in the blink of an eye has kept Chris Hurst captivated by the radio industry for more than 21 years. Chris, 45 from Over Peover, Cheshire is Chief Executive and Co-owner of Chester’s Dee 106.3, Cheshire’s Silk 106.9 and the brand new Dee on DAB radio station. He has been in his current role for four years. He began his radio career after leaving university at Signal Radio as Head of Agency Sales, before going on to become Station Director and then following a number of acquisitions Group Managing Director of local radio at The Wireless Group Plc and then UTV Media Plc. In 2009 he fulfilled a lifelong ambition of owning and operating a business after acquiring UTV’s shares in Dee 106.3, then later Silk 106.9. Chris’ job gives him overall responsibility for all aspects of the organisation’s business, he said: “This includes programing, sales, marketing, admin... the list goes on! Meaning I have a very varied and interesting role that moves with the needs of the business; I’m fortunate to work with some very talented and creative people which helps!

Living on a working farm his day can begin as early as 6am feeding cattle, however some days his father takes over the duties (despite being the grand old age of 80!) giving Chris a chance to enjoy a long breakfast with his wife and three daughters. He drives to work, but his commute can vary as the stations broadcast from Chester and Macclesfield (with trips to London to sit on industry committees thrown in). The working day begins with a cup of tea, although he admits these are usually made for him... he said: “It’s a standing joke that my ‘brews’ are as rare as hens teeth! Every day is different, but generally involve meetings with staff, suppliers and clients. That together with a good dose of admin, contracts, invoices, payroll, VAT... all the fun stuff! “We broadcast 24/7, 365 days a year and don’t share a minute of programming between our stations, so there’s always something to do. We have around 20 full time staff and that number swells when you include our freelance presenters, journalists etc. We have a very capable senior management team whom I work closely with, but given the chance I’ll head out with one of our commercial team to an appointment or chat through the stories of the day with our reporters. He describes himself as being ‘married to his job’ because of all the extra responsibilities that go with the regular working hours; calls on Christmas Day and social media are just a small aspect, with the organisation running more than 250 remote broadcasts around the region every year, he said: “We aim to

stay at the heart of the communities we serve. I like to attend as many major events as possible, whether it be the Cheshire Show or our local hero awards. It’s hard work, I’m not complaining though as the flip side is a VIP pass for the BRIT Awards and after show party...” The organisation works with numerous local businesses of all sizes and backgrounds offering marketing through advertising, creative, sponsorship, promotions and event management.

Chris feels the best parts of his job include his staff and their creative ideas, their engaged listeners, clients who work closely with the organisation, as well as suppliers who respond to ideas, he said: “we plan to continue to extend our brands further into the communities we service. We already operate online dating with each station and we’ll soon add job sites; there are many other ideas we intend to progress that further tie us to our locally focused and engaged audiences.”

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Investment in HS2 Will Create Business Confidence The British Chambers of Commerce welcomed the Government’s plans for the HS2 rail network in the North and Midlands in January. Dr Adam Marshall, Director of Policy at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said: “Business welcomes the Prime Minister’s commitment to extending high-speed rail to the great cities of the Midlands and the North. Transformative infrastructure projects like HS2 create confidence, jobs and competitiveness, as long as commitments and announcements lead swiftly to action on the ground. “Our existing railway network is at capacity and cannot be endlessly patched up at astronomical cost, as opponents of HS2 continue to suggest.

“Yet we hope ministers can go further still. Alongside the commitment to extend the line to Manchester and Leeds, they must envision and plan for a full national network. They must also reassure business communities in cities off the high-speed network that conventional lines will continue to carry good-quality services for both passengers and freight. “Finally, business is concerned at the news that the proposed link to Britain’s only global hub airport, Heathrow, has been put on hold. This is an unwelcome consequence of the government’s near-complete paralysis on the crucial issue of aviation and global connectivity.”

Have Your Say on ISO9001 Have you achieved your ISO9001 accreditation? If so, Tony Novotny Consulting (TNC) would like to hear the views of small businesses about their experiences during and following the accreditation process and what benefits it has provided to them. Consultancy owner Tony Novotny said: “During discussions with a number of businesses recently, they revealed that whilst they had seen the ‘pros’ of having accreditation in tendering for work, they felt staff didn’t necessarily understand or buy into the system or

procedures and little else of value was achieved. “I wondered if these were isolated cases or if reflects the general experience of businesses, so I’m keen to hear and discuss your views in confidence.” TNC are quality and technical specialists and work with businesses to improve processes, documentation and efficiency. Contact Tony on 07787 337386 or email

Bloor Homes Unveils Ambitious Plans Award winning house builder Bloor Homes have announced plans to build on another successful year with further expansion in Cheshire, Lancashire and North Wales.

will deliver 482 properties when completed. A further three new developments in the region are due to open in the summer and feature new house designs.

Established in 1962, Bloor Homes is one of the UK’s largest privately owned house builders, operating from seven regional offices and completing around 2,000 new homes each year. Independence from shareholders and financial institutions has meant that Bloor Homes have continued to invest and grow its business, even during the recent recession and credit crunch.

Steve Feneley, Managing Director of Bloor Homes said: “We are actively seeking residential development land opportunities throughout the North West. Our land acquisition process is quick, due to our short chain of command and we have the benefit of the significant financial resources of a large group of companies, with net assets in excess of £350m. We are a wholly owned subsidiary of Bloor Holdings Limited which also owns Triumph Motorcycles and Pickerings Plant.

It currently has a national portfolio of 72 developments. Nine of these are in its North West region and

“Over the last year we have seen a return of home buyers reserving off plan and developments selling out ahead of schedule. Brereton Chase, our flagship development in Somerford for example has only held a preview event and now has just five properties available from the eleven to be built. “The North West regional office was established 13 years ago and relocated from Wilmslow to larger offices in Holmes Chapel in 2010. We have over these years developed an excellent understanding of the regional property market and in working with local councils to carefully design and build new homes that people aspire to own.

Added value is offered in our choice of incentives that gives home-buyers purchasing options. These are helping people to move now whilst interest rates are low and new mortgage products are available.”

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Businesses encouraged to Try Trade missions Companies across West Cheshire and North Wales are being encouraged to get involved in international trade missions throughout 2013 to show the regions are open for business. That’s the message from West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber of Commerce, as Carwyn Jones, First Minister of the Welsh Government touches down in Turkey to highlight the opportunities in the country. The First Minister visited Istanbul to meet the Turkish Economic Minister and inward investors HDM Steel, as well as discussing the strong economic growth of the country with the Turkish Investment Agency, British Chamber of Commerce and UK companies who have invested there. Both Welsh Government and UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) provide opportunities on either side of the border for companies to take part in trade missions across the globe. In 2012, visits were held to countries including Ecuador, Russia and Brazil amongst others. Richard Thomas, Vice Chairman of West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber of Commerce said: “Trade missions give companies considering opportunities to export to foreign countries the chance to find out first-hand about the local economy, business climate and

Watt Works encourages local Businesses to mind Their language Over the last few years we’ve seen the recession cause organisations and the individuals working within them many problems. Or should we describe them as ‘challenges’? Watt Works Consulting, a Cheshire based company whose expertise includes the field of NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) would support the use of the latter term, and is encouraging the use of this reframing of language in organisations such as Co-op Financial Services, Shell and Waters in order to generate improved solutions. Damian Hamill, Training Director at Watt Works Consulting says:

establish valuable contacts locally. West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber of Commerce has access to the worldwide network of trade contacts built by the British Chambers of Commerce and can call on this resource for your commercial benefit. “The Chamber would urge existing exporters and businesses considering international trade across our regions to log on to the Welsh Government and

UK Trade and Investment websites to find out what opportunities await them. “Our expert international trade staff are also on hand to offer you advice and guidance on how to get started trading globally at any time; contact us on 01244 669988 or email for more information.”

Let Us Showcase Your Artistic Talent! Are you an amateur photographer looking for a way to get your artwork out there? Let us help! We want to give snappers in West Cheshire and North Wales the chance to have their work resplendent on Business Matters’ front cover. As we’re a seasonal magazine, we want our cover to reflect that, so for the next edition we’re looking for your best summer pictures of the West Cheshire and North Wales region. They can be of local scenes, places, buildings, nature… you name it, we’d love to see it.

“We encourage clients to understand that the words you use to frame situations can have an enormous effect upon how people respond to them. Whether it’s enhancing internal communication between departments, or with your customers, NLP can provide instant improvements.” Watt Works is making the secrets of NLP available to local businesses with the NLP for Business course, specifically designed for the application of NLP within a business environment. Brian New of Co-operative Financial Services says: "The NLP for Business course was effective for me as it was not a “one size fits all” course – more a self-evaluating course that fit the candidate’s needs.” If you are in business, whether as a sole-trader or multi-national, and would like further information on how NLP techniques can enhance the results you’re getting, visit for further information or call 01565 759 893 to speak to someone about the challenges you are experiencing.

This month Wrexham-based photographer Kierion Lloyd shared his picture of a wooden post on Mount Snowdon with coins embedded. You can check out more of his work at www.

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Michelle Fellowes

“The main challenges have been building my profile and establishing what business coaching is in the minds of potential clients. I’ve overcome this by taking any opportunity to explain who I am, what I do and the benefits, as well as highlighting case studies from clients endorsing my services.

Ambitious Change

Choosing a name for your business can be one of the hardest parts of starting up an organisation from scratch. Do you pick a clever pun, a name that reflects the industry you’re working in, or something that tells your clients about you and what you’re trying to achieve?

“Looking ahead, I want to see growth in the future years such as taking on associates and developing strategic partnerships. One of my major ambitions is to become a coach of choice for blue chip organisations whilst retaining my personal brand. I’ve also recently taken a role at JCI Liverpool, part of the JCI young professional network as Personal Development Director. It gives me opportunities to meet new people, develop skills and try new things in a fun and interesting way.”

For Michelle Fellowes, the choice was definitely the latter. Michelle, from Hawarden, Flintshire, set up her business coaching company Ambitious Change in the summer of 2012 to help businesses of all sizes improve their performance. After spending 10 years working as a Business Consultant and later an Executive Business Manager, she decided to retrain and test herself in a new environment. After leaving her role in the corporate world, Michelle began the process of setting up Ambitious Change, she said: “Those ten years had flown by; I’d had many fabulous opportunities but I found I was questioning my future career and motivations. I’d had a powerful coaching experience earlier in my career and wanted to share that with others. “I felt the combination of my business experience with the coaching skills I’d trained for would make me quite unique, especially as I had experienced a lot of the challenges faced by potential clients and felt I could relate. I like to stretch myself and I wanted to see if I could do it. “Choosing the name Ambitious Change took some time as I wanted to ensure it was catchy and represented me and my business. After deciding upon my coaching specialisms and marketing messages, I started getting out networking and the Chamber of Commerce’s event last September was my first as Ambitious Change!”

The main challenges have been building my profile and establishing what business coaching is in the minds of potential clients. Michelle works with sole traders all the way up to large organisations aiming to alter the way they work, with her service covering executive support, change management, role transition and small business. She works with clients face to face or over the telephone, as well as spending her time networking, preparing for sessions with clients, meeting potential new ones, managing her social network or her own personal development.

So far the response to Ambitious Change from Michelle’s clients has been extremely positive, with one saying they had seen significantly positive behavioural changes from an employee. Michelle said: “This is the kind of response I’m proud to receive, where coaching has made a positive difference to both the development of a person and business; so things are going to plan against my business goals as during the first year I wanted to establish myself and deliver high levels of satisfaction for my clients.

Michelle didn’t always hold the desire to be her own boss, in fact the idea to go it alone only surfaced during the last three years, she said: “During my 20’s I was happy to soak up the experiences and opportunities of corporate life, but I’d learnt a lot about business leadership and management and wanted to put it into practice for myself. Now, helping others in their development and delivering a service I’m passionate about motivates me to get up in the morning. “People I know have been the greatest influence; my old boss for example was a great mentor and always gave me opportunities to learn, as well as teaching me the importance of encouragement and motivation. I also look up to my partner who has taught me the power of believing in yourself and positive thinking.” Having set up her own business, Michelle has adopted three suggestions to advise others on how to make the step, she said: “From experience I’d say set goals, action plan and regularly review your progress, see all experiences as opportunities to learn and develop, as well as surrounding yourself with people who will positively encourage you.”

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rolling Back the mists from the cloud Part Two

The Cloud: it’s all we ever seem to hear about these days. Windows is apparently Azure, Office is supposed to be 365, software delivered as a service, our precious documents and photographs stored online somewhere in... Actually, that’s the issue isn’t it: where, exactly, is this mythical cloud?

do we even need to know? You may be surprised to know that the answer is a very unequivocal yes, you do. We spoke to the Information Commissioner’s Office to ask for clarification of the legal issues relating to data storage on the cloud. They confirmed that is still, currently, illegal to store personal or identifying data about UK clients outside the European Union. So, do you know where the server hosting your cloud storage or back-up is physically based? If not, you should contact your provider as soon as possible and find out. Do you outsource some or all of your data analysis? If so, you are still responsible for ensuring that all

the processing and storage takes place within the European Union. At Integer Data Limited, our storage, development and data analysis takes place in the UK, not at data centres abroad.Of course, we are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office to handle confidential data and we guarantee never to allow anyone access to client data unless legally obliged to do so. Please download the PDFexplaining why you should outsource your data analysis from, with our compliments. You can subscribe to our RSS Feed from there too.

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Need to reduce your supply costs? Join the Wales & North West Buying Group today! T - 0844 822 2615 W - E -

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Occupational Health Services RPS offer specialist Occupational Health Services, tailored around the needs of your business. With a number of options available, including physician, nurse and technician led services, RPS can help you stay within budget without compromising quality of service. Services can be provided on-site or using mobile screening units to reduce the time employees are away from work.

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Cable Services Learning to Grow Wrexham-based Cable Services Ltd’s new training facility supported by Barclays is set to create two new jobs and increase the firm’s turnover by £2m. and I see potential for growth in China, South America, South Africa and Eastern Europe but this is by no means exhaustive. I am passionate about the prospects that this venture will deliver and I envisage creating two additional positions within the next 18 months to support the expansion.” Paul Ffoulkes, Barclays Relationship Director said: “The continued growth and expansion is an endorsement of the highly successful business Jason and his team has developed. We have supported Cable Services for over 28 years and look forward to their continuing success. Cable Services is a shining example of how Welsh businesses can continue to grow and buck the trend in difficult economic conditions. The company is the UK’s largest specialist electrical distributor of cable and cable accessories to the domestic and international markets and has recently diversified, adding training services providing bespoke tuition on all cable accessories up to 132v. The company celebrated 40 years in business in 2012 and currently employs 53 staff. Cable Services has seen rapid growth in recent years, with turnover forecast to exceed the

£16m achieved last year supported by strong domestic and international demand. Jason Bostock, Managing Director of Cable Services Ltd said: “Domestically the UK energy infrastructure is under immense pressure. Major events such as the Olympic opening ceremony creates additional UK wide demand which puts an enormous strain on the outdated supply network with utility companies working hard to balance

the electricity demand. We are well placed to continue the growth of our business as the UK government is committed to significant utility investment over the next 15 to 20 years.” “We launched Cable Services International Limited over 12 months ago and turnover has doubled in that period. There is massive potential for this division of the business. We currently trade mainly with the Middle East, Asia and the Caribbean

“Barclays is committed to using our industry expertise and specialists to support such propositions, which enable Welsh businesses such as Cable Services to compete and win major contracts both domestically and internationally in a competitive market, bringing real benefits to the local economy.”

Business Investment Vital in Wales Dewi Davies, Head of Corporate Banking for Barclays in North Wales and Chester gives his view on the importance of business investment in Wales… Dewi said: “Business investment is a critical component in growth and economic recovery, and the UK Government recently gave management teams two good reasons to start spending again. “As part his autumn statement the Chancellor handed out a 1% reduction in corporation tax as well as restoring and enhancing capital allowances for investment in plant and machinery. From January capital allowances were increased to £250,000 and will remain at this level for two years, giving Welsh

businesses a compelling reason to invest in 2013. According to the Government this will bring 99% of all business investment in Britain inline for this 100% tax relief.   “This means that there has not been a better time to borrow to invest for 25 years. The reality is that money hasn’t been as cheap for the average business since 1987 thanks to the Bank of England’s low base rate and their Funding for Lending Scheme. Coupled with the restoration and uplift in capital allowances and the reduction in corporation tax it is hoped that businesses will now start upgrading their plant and machinery, which will have a knock-on effect throughout

the supply chain, boosting companies’ order books. “Up until now, many business leaders were postponing capital investments in all cases except for the most compelling, but they have been few and far between with the majority holding on to their cash given the uncertainty for the shortterm economic outlook. This has stifled the local and national economy. “The macroeconomic environment merits wisdom in decision making, but not complete abandonment of investment strategies, especially when debt is at such good levels and the tax benefits so substantial. Even in economic

conditions such as these, there are winners, and losers, within each sector, and prudent business investment often plays a part in growing when the competition is asleep. “We are already in conversations with our clients about refreshing tired plant and machinery or investing to increase capacity and take advantage of market opportunities. Whilst austerity and uncertainty are likely to remain the backdrop to UK business in 2013 we expect to see an increase in borrowing for this purpose from January, when the new allowances come into play, which will have a positive impact on the local economy.”

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ASISEEIT Sally Wightman

Head of Corporate at Hill Dickinson, Chester and Chamber Director

The last edition of Business Matters featured an article regarding the results of a survey developed by the University of Chester and the Chamber.

New Year, New Route, New Airline at JLA Liverpool John Lennon Airport has celebrated the news a new airline will be starting from Liverpool in April with a new route to add to the Airport’s list of 60 destinations. Europe’s third largest low cost airline, Norwegian will commence a three times weekly service from Liverpool to Copenhagen, starting on 5th April, with a lunchtime departure from Liverpool at 13:55 and one way fares from only £33. Norwegian is a public low-cost airline noted on the Oslo Stock Exchange and has a route portfolio that stretches across Europe into North Africa and the Middle East. In May it commences long-haul flights from Scandinavia to the US and Asia. As one of Europe’s fastest growing low cost airlines, management at JLA are excited that Norwegian have chosen Liverpool as their latest airport to operate from, having worked hard for some time to develop this new business.

The airline has seen significant growth in recent years, carrying almost 16 million passengers in 2011 and currently operates 68 aircraft on 330 routes to 120 destinations. Norwegian’s fleet has an average age of less than five years and the company currently has 280 aircraft on order. Flights between Liverpool and Copenhagen are expected to be popular for both leisure and business passengers adding another exciting city break destination from Liverpool. Copenhagen is an attractive shortbreak destination famous for its many designs, modern architecture and some of the best Art Museums in Europe. The city is one of Europe’s oldest Royal Capitals with an international and continental feel.

The survey revealed ‘a clear interest among businesses in the region to begin exporting’. It highlighted that a number of businesses were already adapting products and services to market to overseas customers. With the Atlantic Gateway project gathering momentum and the forthcoming International Festival of Business being held in Liverpool next year, international trade opportunities will be on the radar of an increasing number of businesses across the North West and Wales. Whilst this is great news for the regional economy and burgeoning international businesses out there, it is important to remember that trading with foreign based companies can, for the unaware, present difficulties. It is essential to acquire sound advice before entering into international trade contracts. The legal regime surrounding international trade is complex and encompasses, in addition to ordinary contract law requirements, a diverse body of international conventions governing, for example the division of risk in the carriage of goods and limitation of liability for loss and damage. An understanding of all these conventions, how they impact on contractual arrangements and their applicability to various legal jurisdictions is required in order to not only safeguard, but to thrive in this area. The legal regime, however, cannot and should not be a standalone consideration and a commercial approach to the international trade arena is paramount in order to get the most from the opportunities which present themselves. The mechanisms of logistics, international carriage and the financing of international sales are also vital. Only when armed with the above expertise can the primary questions be answered when considering trading internationally; how do I get goods to market? At what cost? What are the risks? How and when will I be paid? What do I do if things go wrong? With the appropriate support and advice in place, businesses can flourish on the international stage, safe in the knowledge that their risks are managed and they are equipped to make the most of any commercial opportunities that present themselves. These are exciting times for local businesses that have the desire and means to adapt to the global marketplace. Our team of commercial lawyers looks forward to playing its part in promoting the region on an international basis and to seeing local businesses broaden their horizons.

Business Matters

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What do you do when an employee has been approached by a competitor making them a very tempting offer?


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Talk to them to understand why it is tempting. Are they bored or are they trying to negotiate a better deal ? Don’t assume the worst: the certainty of working with you could be attractive compared to a leap into the unknown. You may be able to make some easy adjustments to retain them. Do you have restrictions in the contract of employment preventing the person from going to work in your industry (non-compete provisions) or requirements that anyone considering doing so has to draw such restrictive covenants to the attention of the new employer, to prevent them inducing the employee’s breach of contract? Confidentiality clauses may entitle you to take action when information is leaked but be careful as the Equality Act 2010 makes ‘gagging’ employees about salaries unlawful. If not, there is an implied duty of fidelity towards you. If the person is taking steps to leave or confidential information, you can take action to stop them using this as a springboard if you act swiftly once you had any evidence of the employee doing something illicit like downloading contacts to a memory stick. Perhaps use the next pay rise as the opportunity to introduce covenants? You are vulnerable without them. Include clauses preventing the employee from taking staff or your custom (so called non-dealing and non-solicitation clauses). The courts don’t like non-compete clauses and may be more likely to enforce these. To protect your business contact Anna Denton-Jones on 02920 537742 or

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Business Matters

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Local Trust Supports the Deeside Ramblers Hockey Club Trustees of the Teresa Briggs Trust from law firm Hill Dickinson have pledged their support to Deeside Ramblers Hockey Club. The senior partner of the Chester office presented the donation of £10,000 to the Hockey Club recently. The funds will contribute to building a floodlit, all weather pitch for children to train on. Trustee and senior partner at Hill Dickinson, Robin Jones said:

“Teresa left a legacy to support local organisations that will make a positive contribution to Chester and its communities. I think she would have wanted to support projects such as this, in order to help with the club’s youth development programme.”

Exit Strategy, Management Succession and Estate Planning for Family Businesses By Sally Wightman Head of Corporate at Hill Dickinson, Chester

Avoiding the Pitfalls

Family business owners when considering their exit strategy have a number of different, potentially conflicting, factors to consider. What is the right thing to do for the business may not be seen as a right thing for their family or the next (successor) generation. Succession planning is one of the most important challenges faced by family business owners and it is never too early to be considering all the issues and to start the planning process.

‘next generation’ family member(s) have the requisite skills/abilities to continue successfully the relationships which the business has with its customers, suppliers and its employees. Consequently, as part of this process, will there be a need for a non-family member to be brought into the business alongside the ‘next generation’ who may be able to plug any skills gap. All of these questions can lead to tension in the family which can be managed through the use of professional advisers. Communication at as early an opportunity as possible is key; if the members of the family all understand the succession plan, they have the opportunity to raise any issues which the principal members of the family are still able to address.

Family business owners will need to assess whether a succession-related deal can deliver the value to which they aspire in comparison to the value which may be derived from a sale to a trade buyer.

Agreements on the succession and general administration of family businesses are sometimes captured in so-called ‘family constitutions’ which can be useful in managing the competing interests from the different family members and providing direction to the next generation.

A succession related deal may or may not be the right deal for the business as a whole and the question arises as to whether the

Financial and legal advisers, if brought in early enough, can also become an important part of the process and can assist in developing

Can Management Succession be the Exit Strategy?

a timescale for such exit strategy and management succession. Advisers can also be used as a sounding board and can provide reassurance to the various family members who may not be familiar with corporate transactions and the requirements of any funders or investors who may be involved.

Estate Planning and Management Succession: Two Sides of the Same Coin?

It’s vital to put in place an estate plan in to take into account the impact of taxation, the need to support the present generation, how to provide for members of the successor generation and asset protection generally. Once the future ownership and

direction of the business has been determined, the will(s) of the family owner(s) and their spouses should be reviewed. For example, trusts can offer a significant amount of flexibility and can be an effective shelter from both IHT and also spouses and creditors of potential beneficiaries. As with timing when considering the question of exit strategy, it is never too early to plan succession especially when adverse events and circumstances may occur at any time and upon short notice. The worst possible time to be planning succession is in the event of a key figure such as a majority shareholder or managing director of the business being incapacitated or dying unexpectedly.

Business Matters

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Untidy Inbox? How to Clean it Quickly…

The mythical zero inbox… a target most people working with computers strive for, but, many struggle to reach, preferring to keep thousands of messages going back years ‘just in case’. It’s an easy trap to fall into; you grab the information you need from a message but fail to file or delete it, or even plain ignoring items that don’t look urgent. The end result can scarily be thousands of emails with hundreds unread… Writing on productivity website Lifehacker, journalist Angus Kidman explained how he cleaned over 1300 emails in less than hour, he said: “Keeping a clean inbox means I know that everything’s been dealt with. And there’s a great sense of achievement when you do get an unruly batch of email under control.”

Angus details his top tips: n Work Disconnected

can get rid of multiple irrelevant messages (whether from a person, a newsletter, or a notification service) without reading them all. That leads to speedy bulk deletion.

press releases. If they contain potentially useful information, I store them as text files (low space, easy indexing). Everything else gets deleted.

Use a Filing System that Makes Sense for You

During the entire process, I don’t think I used my touchpad except for the initial ‘Arrange by: From’ command. Using keyboard shortcuts (mostly just the arrow keys, shift and Del) made life much quicker.

My aim here was to work through and sort email, not engage with correspondence. I flagged any email that did need a reply with a tag so I could return to it later, when I was connected.

Sort Your Inbox by Sender

Be Ruthless

n Don’t Reply to Anybody

Sorting mails by who has sent them has several advantages: you

Know Your Keyboard Shortcuts

Sometimes willpower isn’t enough without a little poking from exterior sources. If you prefer a little masochism or negative reinforcement from your apps, you have plenty of options for getting into shape, waking up, and breaking bad habits…

At the end of the hour, this was how the situation stood. Swathes of messages had been deleted, others had been filed. I had nine messages I needed to reply to and six messages I need to print. 13 messages remained in my inbox that required action of some sort, which is a number I can live with.

DIY Car Tips for Better Mileage and Economy

Not everything needs to be kept. I get bombarded with a lot of irrelevant

Turn Small Talk to Networking Gold Getting started with networking can be a daunting task. Knowing what to say with to a perfect stranger you hope may become a key business contact adds pressure to an already difficult situation, especially if you’re doing all you can to avoid talking about the weather! The key is to try to quickly find some common ground that allows you to spark up a conversation.

Problems with security seem to pop up all the time; from an easy to hack router to apps that leak your data into the world. Thankfully, it’s pretty easy to protect yourself…

Sadistic Apps That Help You Be More Productive

I have a fairly well-developed filing system for email with about a decade’s thinking behind it, five major categories and a bunch of sub-categories. That works for me, but I wouldn’t argue on that basis that anyone else should copy it. If you do prefer to rely on search, you could just dump everything in a folder called ‘Done’ for that clean inbox feeling.

n Ensuring no new emails drop into your inbox.

Five Security Holes You Can Fill Today

Ask Questions

Any journalist will tell you the key to finding out about a person is to hit the five ‘w’s’: Who, What, When, Where and Why. People are hard wired to share information about themselves and subconsciously enjoy the sound of their own voice, so try listening first and talking second.

Share Small Details

If you’re asked a question, try to add more detail to your answer that might illicit a talking point eg if you’re asked

‘How are you?’, add some colour to your answer like ‘I’m great thanks, especially after the delicious meal I just had at Fernando’s’. This gives the other person the chance to ask you about the restaurant.

Arm Yourself with Topics

If you’re conversing with a person at a networking event for new business, chances are you’ll both be interested in similar topics. Research some common issues or subjects that may be relevant to attendees so you’re prepared well in advance.

Why spend more at the pumps when you can easily spend less? The team at The Family Handyman share this list of DIY tricks for a noticeable difference in your fuel costs…

What is ‘Defragging’? Do you hear people talk about defragging and wonder if you should be doing it to your computer? The answers lie within…

Business Matters

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Five brilliant details that make us fall in love with brands. Courtesy of Mad Hen Branding and Business Consultancy. 1 The White Board at my local garage Waiting at garages is boring. You pick up a magazine. ,W¡VPRQWKVROG You check your mobile phone. No-one’s texted. You update your status: “At the garage, bored out of mindâ€?. ,WGRHVQ¡WKHOS /DVWPRQWKZKHQ,JRWP\FDUVHUYLFHG the waiting area had a large whiteboard with a marker-pen and a question across the top: “What’s your favourite Ă€OPDQGZK\"Âľ8QGHUQHDWKZHUH twenty or thirty different comments:

´5HVHUYRLU'RJV²$:(620(ODVWVFHQH – Mike, junior mechanicâ€? ´/RUGRIWKH5LQJV²EHFDXVH,¡PDQHUG - Laura, receptionâ€? “Titanic – cheesy but it makes me cry – Liz, waiting for new exhaustâ€?


offers. His delivery is just that charming. +HUH¡VKLVDQQRXQFHPHQWDERXW9DOXH Rice Puddings:

´,¡YHWULHGWKHPP\VHOIDQGWKH\¡UH GHOLFLRXV¾KHFRQÀGHG´$QGWKH\¡UH great value. My kids like them in their OXQFKER[HV,GRQ¡WNQRZDERXW\RXU kids, but mine get bored of yoghurt. 2KDQGWDNHFDUHRQWKHZD\KRPH ,FKHFNHGWKH%%&ZHEVLWHDQGWKH VQRZZLOOEHKHUHVRRQ,QIDFW,¡OOSXW on extra checkout operators to speed things up...all staff to the tills, please, all staff to the tills.�

You can keep your heart-warming &KULVWPDVDGYHUWVDQG\RXUGLVFRXQWHG ketchup. Nothing beats interaction with an actual human being with a heart, and a brain, and a family. 3 The Best Before Date statement on Innocent Smoothies ,WZDVWKHODVW6PRRWKLHLQWKHSDFN VR,FKHFNHGWKHGDWH,WXUQHGWKH bottle over, and above the date was the phrase –

,UHDGHYHU\FRPPHQW7KHQ,ZRQGHUHG Enjoy me by: ZKDWP\IDYRXULWHÀOPZDV7KHQ, ,WFRVWH[DFWO\]HURSHQFHPRUHWRSULQW added it to the list. Then someone came ´(QMR\PHE\¾LQVWHDGRI´%HVW%HIRUH¾ LQDQG,ZDWFKHGWKHPUHDGLW7KHQ, ,ÀUVWUHDGWKDWDERXWVL[\HDUVDJR watched what they wrote. Then we got ,WVWLOOPDNHVPHVPLOH,VWLOOGULQN WDONLQJ7KHQP\FDUZDVUHDG\,KDGQ¡W ,QQRFHQW6PRRWKLHV been bored. 4 Mumsnet’s Facebook Page The staff take it in turns to pick the daily ´2K\RXNQRZWKDWZHEVLWHIRU question. The white-board cost about parents. With the biscuits. And the a tenner. swearing.� There’s no other site on the 2 The manager at my local supermarket web it could possibly be. Their page ,DFWXDOO\VWRSLQWKHDLVOHVDQGOLVWHQWR content is deliberately eclectic, from his announcements about the special serious campaigning to family-friendly

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competitions to discussions about weird stuff women have craved the smell of while pregnant. ,W¡VUDUHWRĂ€QGDELJEUDQGWKDWUHDOO\ gets Facebook and uses it to build a genuine dialogue with its fans. Mumsnet have Facebook totally nailed. 5 The Drawing Table in Fat Face, Beverley This one is from a member of the Mad Hen team based in the North of England. Apparently, a disproportionate amount of her wardrobe comes from Fat Face in %HYHUOH\EHFDXVHWKHVWRUHPDQDJHU has provided a small table and chairs Â…IURP,.($ DSLOHRISDSHUDQGD basket of crayons for her children. They JHWWRVLWDQGGUDZ6KHJHWVWREURZVH Everyone’s a winner. At Mad Hen, we believe great branding is about smart thinking, not big budgets. 2XUPLQLERRN ´$%XVLQHVV*XLGH WR%UDQG.HHSLQJÂľ contains twelve low-cost or no-cost business exercises you can use to help sharpen up your business act. For your copy, go to We’ll ask for your email and business address in return, but we promise not to spam you or sell on your details.

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Spring or Fall. Whatever the weather, whatever the season. In business, we’re all searching for success. It’s simple to be successful. But it’s hard to be simple. At Mad Hen, we’ve built our business by focusing on the simple things. We believe great brands are founded on listening. Understanding your customer is always the starting-point for everything we do. We believe experience counts. The Mad Hen team comes from every aspect of brand creation and management, from New Product Development to advertising production to digital media. We believe hiring a branding agency is about people. Not premises. Not company cars. -XVWSHRSOH:HGRQ¡WWKLQNRXUFOLHQWVVKRXOGEHSD\LQJIRURXUĂ DVK\RIĂ€FHV6RZH don’t have them. We believe passion is important. We only take on projects we’re excited to work on, and ZKHUHZH¡UHFRQĂ€GHQWZHFDQPDNHDUHDOGLIIHUHQFH,IZHGRQ¡WWKLQNZHFDQDGGYDOXH to your business, we’ll say so. 0RVWRIDOOZHEHOLHYHQRWKLQJLVPRUHUHZDUGLQJWKDQZDWFKLQJDJUHDWLGHDWDNHĂ LJKW And one other thing! We believe in putting our money where our mouth is. Our acclaimed mini-book, “A Business Owner’s Guide to Brand Keepingâ€?, contains twelve low-cost or no-cost exercises you can use to put the spring back into your business. )RU\RXUIUHHFRS\YLVLWZZZPDGKHQXNFRPDQGĂ€OOLQ\RXUFRQWDFWGHWDLOV

Thinking Customers, Building Brands, Delivering business.

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Exciting times ahead as radio station celebrates tenth anniversary These are exciting times in the life of radio station Dee 106.3 as it celebrates a special milestone, a decade in broadcasting to Chester from Chester.

One of the people helping to mark the anniversary is Gemma Smith, the recently-appointed Sales Manager. Her journey to the job began when she studied Culture, Media and Communication at Lancaster University, emerging with a 2:1 Degree and an understanding of the unique challenges which are faced by a radio station. Gemma’s entry in the world of work included her first role working for Mercedes Benz in the service department between 2006 and 2008, after which she worked with an engineering company for a year. After a short stint at an Event Marketing company in 2009, she landed her first media sales role working for a Wirral-based lifestyle magazine called View. She worked here until June 2011 and left to become a Sales Executive at Dee 106.3.

“The fact that we are independent and are owned and run by local people means that we have a true understanding and commitment to the area. “The majority of radio stations are in the hands of a few large companies who prefer to cheaply network shows from London whereas, at Dee 106.3m, we are 24/7 from Chester. I think that makes a difference.” She sees one of the reasons for the station’s success as its commitment to delivering a strongly local news service, something which she feels has contributed to the growth in listening figures. Gemma said: “We have the only broadcast newsroom in Cheshire and we are commercially number one for Chester so we must be getting something right. We’ve seen an explosion in our social media following as well.”

In March last year, she was offered the chance to cover for the Sales Director whilst she was away on maternity and, after a few months was offered promotion to Sales Manager.

However, the team at the station know that there is no room for complacency, a philosophy underlined by their determination to expand their brand of local broadcasting,

Gemma is excited about the achievements of the station, which mixes news and a lively diet of entertaining shows aimed at showcasing the attractions of living and working in the Chester area.

Gemma said: “In 2009, the shareholders bought Cheshire’s Silk 106.9, based in Macclesfield, and have applied the same philosophy so that they now lead the market in both East and West Cheshire and North East Wales.

She said: “The big thing for us at the moment is our birthday. We are marking ten years of successful broadcasting from Chester to Chester and our programming team have put together an exciting itinerary for the celebrations planned. “Everyone at the station is proud of the fact that we are one of the last independently owned stations in the UK and that we are owned by local shareholders.

“Silk have just tripled their broadcast power so that it now covers a huge population from South Manchester to North Staffordshire.

a Premiership player at Everton, Apostolos Vellios, which means that we have had a huge Twitter following even before the launch. “We’re also about to launch a new recruitment and jobs website called Dee Jobs, which will allow candidates and recruiters to be matched locally as opposed to trying to mismatch Land’s End with John O Groats. “These are exciting times for the station. Our first ten years has seen us develop into a locally-focused multi-platform media company and, who knows, the next ten years may see us apply this winning philosophy across the whole of the UK. “We are very grateful to our listeners and advertisers, many have whom have been with us for the full ten, and also to our wonderful staff.” The birthday celebrations include: n Celebratory river cruise party on board the Lady Diana on the Fri evening. 1st March n A 12 hour Outside broadcast on the vintage bus in the town centre n A tour of the area on February 25, inviting listeners to wish the station a happy birthday live n Chester FC sponsorship of their champagne moment of the past 10 years n Chester Jets event March 10 n Chester RFU event March 9

“In March, we will be launching a new radio station called Dee on DAB that covers Merseyside, North Wales and West Cheshire, covering about 1.8 million adults. “It’s an exciting proposition and to support it, we have sponsored

Business Matters

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Gemma Smith Sales Manager 23 BM13.indd 23

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Top Flight Production Value at PictureHouse Films “If you’re not visible, you might as well not exist,” says Geoff Deehan, Director/Producer at Picturehouse Films. “Nobody gets entranced by run of the mill stuff. That’s why we don’t make it.” Geoff’s film ‘The Plane Crash’ for Channel 4 was certainly visible. 4.2 million people watched the compelling story of crashing a jumbo jet in the Mexican Desert.

The Plane Crash, Channel 4 Created & Produced by Geoff Deehan

So what’s he doing in a barn overlooking Hawarden Airport on the border of England and Wales? Looking for his next sacrificial aeroplane, perhaps? In fact he’s in the new offices of Picturehouse Films, the production company that has been meeting the visual needs of many of the North West’s leading companies for over two decades. “I moved back to the North for family reasons, and spent some time looking for the right production company to get involved with. A mutual friend introduced me to Picturehouse. He said they were a great bunch who put quality first. He was right. I felt at home immediately.” Picturehouse make films. Everything from training videos right through to complex advertising campaigns for major brands. Along the way they’ve covered just about everything it’s possible to do with a moving image. Head of Film Malcolm Oldfield is a veteran cameraman who has shot drama, documentary, adverts, web campaigns, news, the lot. “I love different challenges. Making something look beautiful on video for an ad is radically different from a multi-camera shoot for a major outdoor event. And that’s different from coaxing a great performance out of a manager who’s not used to presenting ideas in a compelling way…” Kate Oldfield writes and directs, making films that often delight clients by bringing flair to the most straightforward brief. “Hitchcock said you need three things to make a great film,” says Kate. “A great script, a great script, and a great script.” Kate has boundless experience in making the tricky connection between words on a page and pictures on a screen work seamlessly. “We’ve all watched something that is meant to inform and Mal Oldfield, Camera PictureHouse Films

educate us, only to find that we can’t remember a thing about it seconds after it’s all over. We don’t make films like that.”

we can process and manipulate our images for just about any outlet. Our stuff looks as good on YouTube, or DVD, as it does on broadcast TV.”

None of this would work, of course, unless there’s also someone around to join the pictures together properly. Enter editor extraordinaire Steve Parry. Steve’s cut it all, from 30 second commercials to Hollywood feature films. “You’re always striving to tell a fantastic story,” says Steve. “My job is to make the audience stick with the film until it’s done its job.”

As well as technical mastery, Malcolm can point to other Picturehouse strengths: “We’re a small, friendly company. We’re happy to put the time in to make sure all our clients get exactly what they want. Our new offices have a great view. Come and see us – we love to chat film and we’re proud to offer North West companies an unparalleled range of creative and cost-effective solutions to making films that work.”

Picturehouse’s offices are home to a remarkable range of high definition broadcast-standard filming, editing, and lighting equipment. “We have it all in-house,” says Kate. “So we can keep costs down. And because it’s all top-of-the-range gear, Kate Oldfield, Director PictureHouse Films 01244 661155 Steve Parry, Editor PictureHouse Films

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I b t f

Leadership and Development Nurturing talent the key to business success. It has often been said that the best companies are the ones who value their people above everything else and that is certainly the case when it comes to developing strong leadership. Good leadership within a company sets the stage for growth and developing the next generation of effective leaders is perhaps the most important undertaking of any forward-thinking company, particularly at a time of such change in so many market places. According to those working to encourage good leadership, the key is unlocking creativity and involving leaders, making them feel part of the process and encouraging them to put forward their own ideas in the knowledge that they will be taken seriously. Indeed, the best companies are the ones who value ideas and accept that sometimes they will not work but that lessons can be learned from trying.

A glimpse at some of the technology companies will suffice to underline the point; the likes of Apple, Microsoft and Google thrive because they encourage invention and leadership, not just in the higher echelons of the company but all the way down. They remain open to ideas from relatively junior staff who may show a sense of innovation and a willingness to take on more responsibility. Top companies see this infusion of talent as crucial to their success because it constantly renews them and they are unrelenting in their approach to bringing through that talent. Every Executive had to start somewhere. They are also the companies who see the true value in bringing in specialist training companies which know how to encourage new ways of thinking. Such companies pride themselves on the way they spot talent and develop those leaders early on and they see the use of outside consultants as vital to create a sense of vibrancy; everyone in business knows that a company that ignores new

ideas very often ends up fighting for its survival, as competitors take advantage of new opportunities. The highly successful entrepreneur James Caan, who has been involved with many of the planet’s best-performing companies, is one of those who prizes leadership. He summed it up in an interview which he gave several years ago when he said: “I’ve met a lot of very successful entrepreneurs but many of them haven’t been balanced individuals because they haven’t been prepared to listen to others they’ve met along the way. Recognising the value of others around you and what they have to offer is vital in life.“ It’s that kind of mentality that has made James Caan a success and continues to keep the world’s highest performing companies at the top of the pile. As their executives will say, leadership is all in the cut-throat business world and the more leaders within a company’s ranks, the better its performance.



p 0

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outstanding 04/03/2013 4/3/13 11:59:51 15:08:25

ydym yn awr yn cynnig sbectrwm hau cydweithredol er mwyn gwneud wahaniaeth i’ch llinell-isaf.

enabling businesses to prosper and grow. We now offer a wide spectrum of flexible training programmes and collaborative services to make this happen. Glyndŵr can help make a difference to your bottom-line.

yflogwyr i gwrdd â’u hanghenion a darparu mi.

Our foundation degrees are designed and developed with employers to meet their needs and provide students with skills to meet the dynamic demands of the economy.


awr 2013, pynciau cwrs yn cynnwys Technoleg a Pherfformiadol.

Creative Technology and Digital Media – start in January 2013, course topics include Media Technology and Digital Media for Creative and Performing Arts.

iennir yn llawn gan Gronfa Gymdeithasol Ewrop ol, Trydanol ac Awtomasiwn ac Offeryniaeth,

Industrial Engineering – limited number of fully ESF funded places available on this course, which offers five pathways such as Mechanical, Electrical and Automation and Instrumentation, Plant Maintenance and Mechatronics.

Glyndwr leads the way

seiliedig-ar-waith sy’n darparu mynediad i gyflogWe are also part of Elevate Cymru a pioneering, work-based learning project providing both employers and iwyd i gwrdd ag anghenion busnesau Cymreig. Kim Dimmick, Business Development Manager employees access toat funded training courses designed to meet the needs of Welsh businesses.

Glyndwr University, met the Training Manager from

In April 2013, we are set to launch possibly the most exciting Executive MBA Programme available in the UK. ithredol* fwyaf cyffrous y DU o bosibl.Shotton, Mae UPMynPapermill, Deeside,That’s who was looking a bold statement butfor it is endorsed by a number of globally recognised blue-chip organisations that are er o gyrff o’r radd flaenaf a gydnabyddir yn working closely with us to create something truly special. specifi c training to help develop their apprentices as oneddol arbennig.

there was, at that time, no University or College in the New from January 2013 - Certificate and Diploma in Marketing, accredited to CIM! Did you know Glyndŵr n Marchnata, wedi’i achredu i CIM! A wyddech chi University has three of the region’s leading experts in Marketing and consistently achieves 100% nationwide CIM UK that delivered the type of training required. ewn Marchnata ac yn cyflawni graddfeydd pasio pass rates? For details of other Professional courses including ACCA and CIPS please visit our website. iynol eraill gan gynnwys ACCA a CIPS, ewch i’n

For apprentices to receive the specific training it meant travel to Gernsbach College, usnes gydweithredol lwyddiannus, ewch Germany, i renowned for its excellence in paper eud i wneud gwahaniaeth sylweddol i’ch menter, technology.

Kim brought together Glyndwr’s skilled Academics to help design a foundation degree in Plant Maintenance and Operations for UPM and their supply chain companies. This was rolled out in September 2011. Due to the success of this ness programme, the Foundation Degree in Industrial Engineering was glyndwr-university-in-business developed and rolled out in September 2012. The degree encompasses,

Plant Maintenance, Mechatronics, Electrical, Mechanical and Automation To get on board our revolution and become part of a winning collaborative business community, & Instrumentation, and with has been or to discusss anything we can do to make a significant difference to your enterprise hugely visit successful, with not only UPM callbut us others on 01978 293 enrolling such as 439. JCB, DRB, Kelloggs, to name but a few. UPM have achieved significant cost savings and, because of the success of the collaboration, have asked Glyndwr encompasses ‘Master Craftsman to design Management training in Paper Technology’. A reciprocal for their future business needs, visit is planned and it is anticipated encompassing Yale College and any that, in the not too distant future, the other expertise needed. Papermaking industry in the UK will A visit to Gernsbach took place to be able to receive accredited skilled discuss collaboration with the aim training for their apprentices within of designing a Degree course that the UK.

FIRE SAFETY TRAINING National charity working from dedicated locations and employer premises throughout England. Our Chester location is currently offering: Apprenticeships in Children and Young People’s Workforce Apprenticeships in Playwork Apprenticeships in Supporting Teaching and Learning NEW for March 2013! Apprenticeships in Retail We can support your business in recruiting staff. Let us advertise, shortlist and interview based on the requirements of your business ▼ Apprenticeship wages start at £2.65 per hour and if you haven’t benefited from an Apprentice in the last 12 months you may be eligible for a grant of £1500.00 ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼

Leave Safe Training specialises in providing high quality fire safety training to suit your business. Les Spencer has 30 years experience as a fire officer and has many years experience in giving fire training to local organisations. Courses Include ▼ ▼ ▼ ▼

Fire Extinguisher Course General Fire Awareness Course Fire Warden/Marshall course Fire Managers Course

We can tailor a course to meet your specific requirements and training can be delivered at your premises.

For more information email

01244 311879

For Further information, contact Les Spencer on 01244 509997 / 07538 502666

Business Matters

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The Business Social network, february 7th 2013: atlantic gateway

dates for your diary Below you’ll find the dates for all upcoming events throughout the next quarter, so make sure to keep an eye on Business Matters and the Chamber website at for up to date details.

mar 06

mar 07

mar 12

mar 20

9am, Export Training: Documentation and INCOTERMS, Llyndir Hall, Wrexham

4pm, The Business Social Network, Riverside Innovation Centre, Chester

10am, Business Enterprise Network, Castle Park, Frodsham

9am, Export Training: Methods of Payment, Llyndir Hall, Wrexham

aPr 04 8am, The Business Social Network, Riverside Innovation Centre, Chester

If you’re interested in speaking at a Business Social Network, contact us on

aPr 09 10am, Business Enterprise Network, Howard Worth, Northwich

aPr 10 9am, Export Training: Agents and Distributors, Llyndir Hall, Wrexham

aPr 17 10am, , Business Enterprise Network, Riverside Innovation Centre, Chester

aPr 24

may 02

9am, Export Training: Inward and Outward Processing, Llyndir Hall, Wrexham

4pm, The Business Social Network, Riverside Innovation Centre, Chester.

Business Matters

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Have You Considered Energy Efficiency Lately? could your Business Benefit from the regional growth fund? Cheshire West and Chester Council understands the increasing financial pressures of running a business in the current economic climate. The council also has a duty to meet the national demands for energy efficiency and carbon reduction targets. It wishes to support businesses in its area reducing their energy costs by providing advice, sign posting and encouraging them to consider if they’re using excess or to invest in efficiency technology (on an invest to save basis) to make a more sustainable organisation in the short to medium term. Among many requirements it can be easy to lose sight of basic resources, but with increasing above inflation wholesale energy costs it could be time to consider the bottom line. A recent change in legislation may provide that opportunity to examine the efficiency of your business…

are you compliant?

On January 9th some new requirements were introduced relating to Energy Performance Certificates (EPC), the key measures include: n A requirement for property advertisements to include details of the EPC rating (where available) n Removal of requirement to attach the front page of the certificate to any written material n Exempting listed buildings (as heritage website) from the need to have a certificate on their sale or rent

Extending the requirement for a Display Energy Certificate (DEC) in large public buildings, to public buildings above 500m² Introducing a requirement for an EPC to be displayed in commercial premises larger than 500m² that are frequently visited by the public and where one has been previously issued. The current guidance defines a building that is ‘frequently visited by the public’ as a building that: n Is a non-domestic building n The public has an implied or express licence to enter n Is regularly visited by members of the public on a daily or near daily basis. With this requirement being hurried through (it was announced December 19th), shops and restaurant owners could find face fines of up to £1,000 if they fail to comply with these requirements. The Department for Communities and Local Government’s guidance states a business can be fined up to £500 by a local council for failing to display an EPC at all times in a prominent place clearly visible to the public, and £1,000 for failing to possess or have in their control a valid advisory report.

Did you know your business could be eligible under a special fund to help create new jobs? The Regional Growth Fund (RGF) targets businesses aiming to create jobs which require additional support in the form of grants, loans or loan guarantees to make them viable. The Government has recently launched the fourth round of RGF and is inviting businesses and private organisations (as well as in partnership with others) who may be eligible to submit bids. Cheshire West & Chester Council, is looking to raise awareness amongst private organisations who have potential projects that meet the criteria for RGF and require funding support. If you have any projects that may be eligible, contact business@ or call 01244 515561 to be signposted to the relevant contact.

To find out more contact or call 01244 550061.

Business Matters

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Destination Rio’s Originality Wins Badge of Honour A global entrepreneurship organisation has awarded a badge of honour to the Destination Rio team for their challenge to students to turn £10 into a trip to Brazil. Destination Rio is an initiative that aims to nurture the next generation of entrepreneurs. This original and innovative project is being run by the University of Chester in partnership with Chester Enterprise Society, the Riverside Innovation Centre (RIC) and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund and Cheshire West and Chester Council.

people to learn more about the wealth of support that is available to entrepreneurs in the UK.

The first stage of the challenge has been acknowledged as a ‘High Impact’ event by the team behind Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW), which ran from November 12th to 18th last year.

The University of Chester is one of 361 organisations who have received this recognition globally and through partnering with GEW the University has helped to directly contribute towards, deliver and promote entrepreneurship and enterprise activities both nationally and on a global scale.

GEW is the world’s largest campaign to promote entrepreneurship, taking place in 115 countries. The aim is to create a collaborative, local and practical week which enables

To achieve the ‘high impact’ badge of honour the challenge needed to meet four out of six criteria; promote the GEW campaign, provide practical support, provide role models, share success, develop enterprise capabilities and measure the effect.

Destination Rio was designed to encompass the two main annual

global enterprise dates; GEW and the Global Entrepreneurship Congress. Teams of students were set the task of turning an initial investment of £10 into the profits necessary to fund travel to the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Rio de Janeiro through a series of challenges designed to test their enterprise skills. The teams were tasked to generate as much profit as possible with only an initial £10 investment in a 48-hour window from November 13th until November 15th. The £10 Challenge was kindly supported by the management of the Forum Shopping Centre, Chester, which provided space for teams to trade.

work of the staff behind the initiative, in addition to the tremendous commitment from students taking part in Destination Rio. The £10 Challenge event marks the start of the journey, and we are looking forward to continuing the challenge in 2013.” To find out more, visit and follow @riversideinnov8 on Twitter.

Paul Kirkbright, Director of the Riverside Innovation Centre said: “This prestigious award recognises the hard

RIC Round Up Work Based Learning Opportunity

Enhancing Classroom Learning

Riverside Innovation Centre (RIC) will take on its first student in a pilot for the Work Based Learning scheme in May 2013. This is a first for the University of Chester and will see a student assessed whilst running his own business at RIC, as a departure from the usual work based placement.

50 schools across the North West could be set to benefit from enhanced technology in the classroom following an event organised by RIC-based digital design company Footsqueek Ltd.

Barry Hodges-White, RIC Centre Manager said: “It makes perfect sense. The University has enjoyed a growing reputation for some time around the employability of its graduates. This is the next logical step as our focus shifts from merely preparing students for the workplace to producing the next generation of entrepreneurs.” The pilot that will run in May 2013 will provide a test case for future years.

Heads from schools across the region attended the free U-Learn event organised by Footsqueek Managing Director Steve Westgarth to find out about the practical applications technology can provide. The company specialises in mobile application development for schools, colleges and children’s services throughout the UK and has recently won several new contracts with Alder Hey Hospital, Imperial College London, and St Martins Academy; a new free school based in Chester.

Business Matters

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We read Twitter so you don’t have to... @britishchambers How do visas affect trade with our international partners - John Longworth writes in the Telegraph British chambers of commerce January 30th 2013 @go_cheshirewest Organising an event and need advice? Our events team are offering free support workshops. Email for information

Peter knight Recently I’ve tried to understand why video conferencing is not a more common form of meeting… Posted link to Property Aspects Manchester on video conferencing… January 30th 2013

cheshire West and chester council January 28th 2013 @lifehacker You don’t need to be a computer geek to take good care of your tech. Here are 10 tech habits everyone should have: lifehackerJanuary 26th 2013 @bisgovuk Business study shows that workplace commitment and happiness has increased despite the recession #WERS2011 department for Business, innovation and Skills January 23rd 2013

Sarah Pratt Do you run or manage a food and drink business, hotel, or restaurant in North East Wales or West Cheshire? Are you responsible for waste management? Grab the chance to be part of a new and exciting opportunity to be involved at the start of a new social enterprise… January 25th 2013

laura gough

@startupsfeed Entrepreneur Will Lovegrove demonstrates how to get your business up and running fast using Cloud solutions

Glyndwr University will launch the UK’s first app design degree to capitalise on a £35billion global boom in the software…

Startups feed January 15th 2013

January 23rd 2013

@solicitor_caldw Do you own a family business? @HillDickinson has launched a service catering for the needs of family businesseshttp://www.hilldickinson. com/family_businesses.aspx … charlotte caldwell January 11th 2013 @glyndwruni Photos of our performance car technology students at the@Autosport_Show are now on the Glyndwr Uni Facebook page glyndwr university January 11th 2013 @careerswales How Freelancers Can Use Social Media to Market their Services & Useful info on building networks

careers Wales January 10th 2013 @Bccadam Like new word from @ MayorofLondon on #Marr, ‘transformatory’. Wish policymakers would try out the concept sometime adam marshall December 16th 2012

oli rhys There is a way North Wales can get far better broadband, and that is through applying for the Welsh Government Broadband scheme. It makes it affordable for companies to connect to our 21st Century wireless network that is growing around North and Mid Wales… January 18th 2013

colin Brew British Chambers of Commerce says inflation creates risks for UK recovery prospects… January 15th 2013

david grube

@outwritepr The first #SMS was sent 20 years ago today. Any memorable text messages you have received or sent?

In the architecture and the construction industries, the biggest problem is that the banks and building societies are not lending for property development. We also now have far too many rules and regulations in the construction industry.

outwrite December 3rd 2012

January 25th 2013

Business Matters

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NEWMEMBERS Bloor Homes 2-4 Whiteside Business Park Station Road Holmes Chapel CW4 8AA 01477 536550 Mr Stephen Barlow ACS Ltd F13 Bersham Enterprise Centre Bersham WREXHAM LL14 4EG 01978 846173 Ms Anna Shipley Ffres Catering Ltd Optic Glyndwr Fford William Morgan ST. ASAPH LL17 0JD 01745 535127 Mr Roland Thomas C5 Coaching 16 St. Martins Street Castleton ROCHDALE OL11 2TD 07942 889309 Mr Nicholas Corrigan NFU Mutual 1st Floor Commodore House North Wales Business Park ABERGELE LL22 8LJ 01745 533803 Mr Mark Williams W M Shellfish LLP Holland Park Industria Estate Cyttir Road HOLYHEAD LL65 2PU 01407 7639933 Mr Richard Williams O2 (Broughton) 12B Broughton Retail Park Broughton CHESTER CH4 0DP 01244 538002 Ms Rachael Parry-Jones

O2 (Wrexham Eagles Meadow) Unit A2 Block C Eagle Meadows WREXHAM LL13 8DB 01978 266660 Mr Michael McDade O2 (Coliseum Retail Park) Coliseum Retail Park ELLESMERE PORT CH65 9HD 0151 3558858 Mr Steve Harrison O2 (Ellesmere Port) 50 Merser Walk ELLESMERE PORT CH65 0AP 0151 3552202 Mr Mo Patel Cimteq Limited Redwither Business Centre Wrexham Industrial Estate WREXHAM LL13 9XR 01978 664215 Mrs Amanda Shehab


Dashper-Hughes Consulting Limited Foxlow House 7 Hassall Road Winterly SANDBACH CW11 4RL 07715 269724 Mr Matthew Daspher-Hughes Mad Hen Hafod Fawr Llandderfel Bala BALA LL23 7RN 07703294982 Ms Amanda Byrne Green Hydroponics Unit 12 Enterprise Park Thornton Industrial Estate ELLESMERE PORT CH65 5EP 07803 3354599 Mr Paul Wood

Keith Anglesea

General Manager Arriva Buses Chester

Arriva Buses operate throughout the North West and Wales, with buses running into Chester from North Wales, Merseyside and Cheshire. We operate from early morning to late evening with some routes operating every 10 minutes. Arriva buses are very competitive with their ticket prices and are available on daily, weekly, monthly and yearly deals, they can be bought on the bus, online, on your mobile or from your local shop. If you are an employer and wish to talk to me about ticket deals then e-mail: Business Matters

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Just One More Thing… Anna Shipley Service Manager

ACS (Air Conditioning Solutions)

1. What brought you to your current job? Around four years ago I offered to give my dad a hand. 2. What inspires you? Everything I see, hear and taste! 3. Who do you admire? Everyone who at some point has had the guts to give something a go. 4. What advice would you give someone aiming for a job like yours? Be prepared to get stuck in and always have a smile on your face.

5. Tell us about your most memorable moment or greatest achievement in life. Renovating my home! It was six months of back breaking work, but it was worth it when enjoying the first glass of wine in front of the open fire. 6. What was your childhood ambition? To get to drive a Formula 1 car, especially like the late Ayrton Senna. 7. If you were Prime Minister, what one change would you make to help business? Make 30 day payment terms compulsory. 8. What are you listening to, watching, reading or playing at the moment? Currently I’m going through and rewatching the entire Blackadder catalogue; I’d forgotten how amazing it is! 9. What couldn’t you live without? A good book… or ten! 10. Describe a perfect Sunday… Filled with lots of food and a nice long walk with the dog.

Rewind The world as it was 10 years ago… March 2003 5th:ऀ The Times reports the United Nations has secretly drawn up a plan to establish a post-war government in Iraq 6th: Cuban President Fidel Castro is elected unopposed for a sixth term, meaning he has served as the head of Cuba’s government for 44 years 7th: Broadway musicians union members go on strike over proposals to use taped or digital music in their place 8th: ऀMalta votes in favour of joining the European Union in 2004 15th: The World Health Organisation (WHO) issues first warnings for the SARS virus, amid fears it may lead to an epidemic 17th: Robin Cook, Leader of the House of Commons resigns from the Cabinet over the plans to invade Iraq 29th: Dr Carlo Urbani, the WHO expert who identified SARS dies of the disease in Thailand.

April 2003 1st: Glasgow Rangers football manager Alex McLeish announces the signing of 17 year old Turkish ‘wonderkid’ Yardis Alpolfo for £5m; the player’s name is an anagram of ‘April Fool’s Day’ 5th: Monty’s Pass wins the Grand National 7th: US Secretary of State Colin Powell says the war in Iraq is ‘drawing to a close’ 9th: Baghdad falls to coalition forces as American infantrymen seize deserted Iraqi ministries and together with citizens pull down a huge iron statue of Saddam Hussein 24th: Winnie Mandela is found guilty of theft and fraud and faces up to 15 years in prison 28th: Apple reveals the iTunes Music Store for its iPod music player

May 2003 1st: President Bush lands on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln and declares major combat operations in Iraq are over 5th: Business networking site LinkedIn launches 11th: Manchester City’s Maine Road ground closes after 80 years 31st: The final flight of an Air France Concorde takes place

Business Matters

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HAS provides Accounts , Bookkeeping, Tax advice and Payroll (compliant with HMRC RTI requirements) to small businesses in the Chester and North Wales area. Free Initial Consultation

Tel: 01244 674823 Handbridge Accountancy Solutions 19 Eaton Mews, Chester CH4 7EJ Email: Web:

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t t t t t

Buses Wales Bysiau Arriva Cymru

Advert - Business BM13.indd 36 Matters magazine NOV 12.indd 1

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Business Matters 13  

Business Matters is the official magazine of West Cheshire & North Wales Chamber of Commerce specifically designed for Chamber members, but...

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