The Largest Circulation Regional Business Publication in the UK.
ISSUE 38. 2017
PLATINUM A formidable French foe?
PLATINUM HOW WE LEAD IN TECH INDUSTRIES
A ROUND AT MANNINGS HEATH GOLF CLUB & WINE ESTATE
MERCEDES-BENZ S-CLASS COUPE
The worldâ€™s best-selling luxury car
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For all things Porsche. Breathtaking design, innovative engineering and a virtually limitless number of options to choose from. Contact us about the Porsche range. To register your interest in the new Panamera Sport Turismo, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01444 242 911.
Porsche Centre Mid-Sussex Innovation Drive York Road Burgess Hill West Sussex RH15 9T W www.porschemidsussex.co.uk
Fuel consumption for Panamera Turbo Sport Turismo: Urban in l/100 km (mpg) 13.1 – 12.9 (21.6 – 21.9); Extra-urban in l/100 km (mpg) 7.4 – 7.3 (38.2 – 38.7); Combined in l/100 km (mpg) 9.5 – 9.4 (29.7 – 30.1); CO2 emissions in g/km 217 – 215.
THE BIG STORY EMMANUEL MACRON France has a young dynamic President - but is this bad news for us?
HOW WE LEAD IN TECH INDUSTRIES
WHY YOU NEED A STRATEGY
TIME TO FIX THE A27
NatWest’s Neil Bellamy on why London and the South East lead the way
Si Conroy always has a plan
The World’s best-selling luxury car
Our food editor, Amanda Menahem always speaks her mind when reviewing a restaurant. Now she has her own restaurant, can she match her own standards?
At a Glance 6 Local & National News 14 Lewes Awards - Winners 16 NatWest - Tech News 18 The Big Story - Emmanuel Macron 24 Carpenter Box - Tax-efficient Benefits 26 Kreston Reeves - Election Consequences 28 DMH Stallard - Intellectual Property 30 Rawlison Butler - Insurance Disputes 33 Smart Monkey - Power of SEO 35 Si Conroy on Strategy 36 Business Destination - Quito 43 Gatwick Airport News 44 Golf Review - Mannings Heath 47 Sussex Business Awards 48 Worthing & Adur Awards 51 Net XP Expos 52 Awards - Women In Business 53 Sussex Economic Forum 55 Brighton’s Great Debate 56 Motoring - Mercedes-Benz S-Class 58 Motoring - Volvo V90 D4 R-Design 61 The Platinum Club 62 Table Talk - And So To Food 78 Table Talk - Pascere Review 67 Table Talk - Wine 69 Charity News 70 Hotel Review - Hever Hotel 72 Chambers of Commerce 80 Anger Management 82 Institute of Directors
Worthing Chamber president, Chris Coopey, demands action now.
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18th October 2017 THE ARORA HOTEL, CRAWLEY
Donâ€™t just Meet the Buyers get yourself connected The Gatwick Diamond Meet the Buyers Programme brings together Buyers and Suppliers to help each other grow their businesses. For Buyers, you will have the opportunity to meet new Suppliers of the products and services you need as well as explore ways to solve your procurement issues.
For Suppliers, you will be able to access the kind of businesses you simply cannot reach elsewhere, with face to face meetings with their procurement professionals.
From June 2017, there will be a programme of free Seminars to help you understand how to engage with Public Sector and large businesses that are seeking new suppliers as well as improve your general sales processes.
t: 01293 813889
Issue 38 - 2017
A word from the Editors Our cover profile of President Macron is informative and frightening in equal measure as he seems intent on stealing away our financial services and only time will tell is he is successful. With their ludicrous labour rules and tendency of three hour liquid lunches, we would not bet a euro on it. Business awards seem to come along like buses and we report on the Lewes Business Awards and the launch of the Adur and Worthing and the Sussex Business Awards. Be nice to us as we are judges!! Rose has been busy checking out Quito in Ecuador, Maarten has been having thundering fun in the impressive Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe and losing his temper at the EU tin-pot dictators and Amanda has opened her own restaurant - and been banned from reviewing it. Ian hears from Gatwick about another stellar year and David Sheppard, Chairman of the Sussex Chamber of Commerce enjoys a very long round of golf at the Mannings Heath Golf Course and Wine Estate - more golf and less wine David! Mandy has been swanning around reviewing hotels and was delighted with the Hever Hotel and the cocktails by the sound of it. Meanwhile, the new President of the Worthing & Adur Chamber, Chris Coopey rightfully gets hot and bothered about the debacle that is the A27. We hope you enjoy this issue and as we are close to vacation season, we wish you all a great August break.
Maarten & Ian Platinum Business Magazine August 2017
Maarten Hoffmann â€“ Director email@example.com
Ian Trevett â€“ Director firstname.lastname@example.org
Business Development Director
Food & Drink Editor
Sarah Walker-Bennett Amanda Harrington Event Photographer
Head of Design
LOCAL NEWS ALLIANCE IN HORSHAM How do you protect a market town’s identity while meeting growing demand for housing and employment? This was the challenge outlined by Dr Chris Lyons, Director of Planning, Economic Development and Property at Horsham District Council, at the latest meeting of the Sussex Property Alliance at South Lodge Hotel, Horsham. Dr Lyons spoke about the council’s local plan, which envisages an additional 16,000 houses across the district by 2031 and the creation of 9,000 extra jobs over the same period. Central to the delivery of these objectives is a mixed use site north of the town that would provide 2,750 homes, a 46,450 sq metre business park, new schools and leisure facilities. Dr Lyons said, “In effect we are creating a whole new community, and uppermost in our planning is to ensure that Horsham retains its identity as a market town, because this is what makes Horsham special for the people who live here already.” The Sussex Property Alliance provides a forum where property professionals get together, exchange ideas, and build relationships. It is supported by MHA Carpenter Box chartered accountants, Bennett Griffin solicitors and Michael Jones commercial real estate agents. www.sussexpropertyalliance.co.uk
BRAVE NEW WORLD
A NIGHT AT THE MUSICALS
MDHUB will host its annual event for business leaders on Wednesday 4th October at the Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts at the University of Sussex.
The annual Midsummer charity Ball, sponsored by Skerritts, raised £100,000 for the DM Thomas Foundation for Young People along with Action Medical Research, Chailey Heritage Foundation, Chestnut Tree House and The Starr Trust. Over 450 guests were treated to a Night at the Musicals themed evening of food, fundraising and entertainment at the Hilton Brighton Metropole in June.
The Original Leaders’ Event in Partnership with Extech Ltd brings together business leaders from Sussex and the surrounding area to share ideas and perspectives to equip their businesses to develop and grow. This year, the theme of Brave New World continues with a range of inspirational speakers offering their views on what being brave really means and what the future holds for businesses and their leaders. The line-up of speakers includes Rob Andrew MBE, Chief Executive of Sussex Cricket, Jeremy Cook, Chief Economist of World First, and Luke Aldrich, Chairman of ROCC. Fiona Shafer, Managing Director of MDHUB, said, “This dynamic and interactive event will help attendees to look outside their day-to-day business issues and gain new insights to help drive their business strategy.” www.mdhub.co.uk
Entertainment included cameos on the dance floor from Antony Nelson, Keris Lea, Robin Cousins and Robb Starr, as well as a Grease routine courtesy of Marcella Whittingdale and Creative Pod’s’ Matt Turner (pictured) Photo by Graham Franks
When a man opens a car door for his wife it is either a new car or a new wife.
A SCORE DRAW Semi-professional football club Lewes FC have become the first team in the UK to provide equal pay to their men's and women's teams. The Sussex club men's side play in the Isthmian League Division One South while the women compete in the Premier League Southern Division. As well as a mirroring wage bill, both the men's and women's team will be given the same budget for coaching staff, strength and conditioning support, training equipment and facilities.
When you go into court you are putting your fate in the hands of twelve people who were not smart enough to get out of jury duty
Director Jacquie Agnew said the club believes there should be a level playing field for women in football. "By committing to paying our women's and men's team equally, and providing equal resource for coaching, training and facilities, we hope to spark a change across the UK that will help put an end to the excuses for why such a deep pay disparity has persisted in our sport.” The move marks the launch of its Equality FC campaign to raise awareness of gender equality in football.
BOEING BOOST Boeing has expanded its flight training services at Crawley with a new 737 MAX 8 simulator and plans for a new annex to accommodate growing demand for pilot and technician training. The Boeing Flight Services Centre has been in Manor Royal, since September 2004, where the company trains pilots and technicians from airlines across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The current 4,900 square metre facility houses several classrooms, fixed training devices and eight full-flight simulators. Once the annex is built it will be the largest such Boeing site outside the United States. Sir Michael Arthur, president of Boeing Europe said,“Demand for Boeing’s leading products and services is strong from our customers in Europe and on into the Middle East and Africa. It is crucial for our customers that we are able to meet this demand locally and we are delighted to grow further our pilot and technician training offering in Crawley as part of our new services business unit. This enhances further Boeing’s commitment to the UK and its economic prosperity.” Within the last year, Boeing has also announced plans for a commercial aviation maintenance hangar at Gatwick Airport.
EMBRACING THE UNKNOWN So your business was ticking along nicely, you were making plans for the future, and then…2016 happened. The British people voted to quit Europe, America elected a reality TV host as President, and the world seemed to tilt on its axis. The pound nose-dived, businesses worried about hanging on to their EU employees, and everyone thought….WTF? In this time of change and uncertainty, you can confidently stick one thing in your diary - the Brighton Summit. It’s a high energy conference bringing together the city’s distinctive business community and it’s the highlight of the Chamber’s year. This year’s theme is ‘Embracing the unknown’. It will encourage you to think about how to deal with the unfamiliar, seize new opportunities and take advantage of the altering landscape. Some things won’t change. You can rely on the usual great networking, brilliant keynote speakers and inspiring workshops. But there will be challenges and surprises to reflect the mood of the times. So come prepared to leave your comfort zone and expect the unexpected… Earlybird tickets are on sale now for the event on Friday 13th October 2017. www.businessinbrighton.org.uk
LOCAL NEWS WIND POWER
SPEEDY ADUR The fastest local authority areas for broadband speeds are Tamworth in the West Midlands, where the average speed is of 30.4mbps, followed by Reading and Adur in West Sussex, according to research by consumers’ association Which.
ALMOST half the 116 turbines of the Rampion Offshore Wind Farm are now in place. E.On has announced that progress on the scheme off the Sussex coast continues with two mighty jack-up vessels now working together to install the remaining turbine models to complete it.
Fastest average broadband speed (Mbps): • Tamworth 30.4 • Reading 30 • Adur 29.2 • Enfield 29.1 • Dundee City 28.7
The installation of turbines will carry on throughout the summer and is expected to continue until late in the year. More than 100 vessels have been involved in the windfarm’s construction. The commissioning of the turbines, to get them ready to start generating power, is due to begin in autumn. And it has to be said that the skyline of Brighton has been destroyed forever.
KEEPING SEA SAFE In 2016 more than 2,000 people were rescued from the seas around the South East Coast of England, and there appears to be no let-up in the number of people needing help. This summer, and in response to the seven men who sadly drowned at Camber Sands near Rye, East Sussex last year, Wave Leisure Trust (Wave) in partnership with the local RNLI, is launching “SEA SAFE – Water Aware”. This campaign will tackle the subject of sea safety and making sure the community of East Sussex knows how to swim and have the knowledge to stay safe when on the beach, in the sea or having fun in the river or swimming pool. The key aims for the campaign are 1) understanding lifeguard flags, 2) knowing what the swimming rules are and 3) most importantly, knowing how to float and tread water for three minutes or more. SEA SAFE – Water Aware is supported by the RNLI who are delighted to link-up with Wave in a strategic partnership, which enables them to also deliver their RESPECT THE WATER messages to a larger and younger than normal audience. Bill Walton, the RNLI’s Coastal Safety Officer at the Newhaven Lifeboat Station said: “As an organisation, it’s imperative for us to link-up with other organisations in order to co-ordinate resource and give greater reach and impetus to lifesaving messages that raise awareness and change behaviour. We’re delighted to be partnering with Wave; an alliance which has strong potential to prevent loss of life across East Sussex.” From July until September, Wave will be hosting a series of classes and informative, fun, interactive sessions for the summer holidays at Wave’s swimming pools at Lewes Leisure Centre and Seahaven Swim & Fitness Centre in Newhaven. Details about the SEA SAFE classes can be found at www.waveleisure.co.uk
Women who seek to be equal to men lack ambition
ENTERPRISING NEWHAVEN The Newhaven Enterprise Zone, designed to further accelerate the rapid economic growth and job creation already underway in the town, has been officially launched. Around 100 residents, local businesses and community leaders, including Lewes MP Maria Caulfield, attended the launch at the UTC@harbourside. The Enterprise Zone is a collaboration led by Lewes District Council and Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, and aims to shift the town to a higher value economy over the next 25 years, creating space for new businesses as well as employment and training opportunities for local residents. Businesses locating to any of the eight designated areas within the Enterprise Zone can benefit from simplified planning rules, access to free business support, investment in the infrastructure across the local area, and could also receive reduced business rates. Steve Allen Coast to Capital Vice Chairman, said: “Newhaven is unique, with a deep sea and cross-Channel port and ferry, great access to key domestic markets, a rich history and a stunning landscape on the edge of the South Downs National Park. It is also a town which has great untapped potential and space for growth in a way other towns and cities in the region don’t have.” www.newhavenenterprisezone.com.
CLOCK TOWER ROLE FOR FRANCES Frances Duncan, former director of The Whitehawk Inn has been appointed as the new interim CEO for The Clock Tower Sanctuary, a charity that supports homeless young people in Brighton and Hove. Frances said: “The Clock Tower Sanctuary is a fantastic charity that has a clearly defined objective - to prevent homeless young people becoming part of the long-term homeless population. “It has a clear approach to homelessness offering vulnerable young people comfort, support, understanding and the tools to further their skills and confidence. “Kate Kirkham, our departing CEO did a fantastic job at leading the charity through some strategic change so I’m looking forward to building on the last two years of development and investment. “The Clock Tower Sanctuary has a terrific ethos and I can’t wait to get stuck in!” As well as leading the charity through its final phase of its current strategic plan, Frances will support the board in looking for a permanent replacement to take up the role in early 2018.
Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt
❞ PAINTING MARBELLA RED Ian Lucas, Managing Director of Brighton-based stag and hen travel experts Red7, raised the bar when it comes to employee rewards - taking the firm’s entire workforce on an all-expenses paid luxury trip to Marbella. The deluxe excursion was arranged to celebrate Red7’s 20th year in business, marked with fine dining and a boat tour of the Spanish resort as well as a weekend of indulgent activities. No expense was spared in the three-day extravaganza which included Michelin-starred cuisine, VIP nightclub experiences and top of the range accommodation, allowing Red7 employees to let their hair down and celebrate in style. Ian commented: “This team is the beating heart of Red7, in fact, some of them have been with the company since it started 20 years ago - it’s only right that these people are at the centre of our celebrations. “What sets Red7 apart from its competitors is a promise to create once-in-a-lifetime premium experiences. I wanted to bring that element of our ethos to life for my staff during this trip. A cash bonus or a gift is a nice reward in the moment, but I can’t think of a better way to express my thanks than by treating my employees to a lavish, money can’t buy trip and creating lasting memories.” “We are increasingly seeing a trend towards more far-flung trips. Perhaps for the 30th Red7 Day we’ll find ourselves in Las Vegas, having a flutter on red seven!” www.redsevenleisure.co.uk.
NATIONAL NEWS KOR BLIMEY One of America’s best-known fashion retailers is vying with investors from the UK and China to seal an £800m takeover of Jimmy Choo, the upmarket shoe designer. Michael Kors, the New York-listed chain, has indicated that it will table an indicative bid for Jimmy Choo, which was founded by the businesswoman and socialite Tamara Mellon. Hony Capital, the Chinese private equity firm which owns PizzaExpress, is also considered likely to make an offer, as is CVC Capital Partners, the former owner of Debenhams and Formula One motor racing. Michael Kors, which have endured a difficult trading period and so adds a further element of intrigue to the Jimmy Choo sale process, is said to be working with JP Morgan, the Wall Street bank, on its bid. The American fashion retailer slashed sales and profit forecasts earlier this year amid declining consumer footfall in US shopping malls. Meanwhile, Jimmy Choo, has attempted to paint a positive picture of its prospects. The shoe brand, which is run by Pierre Denis, has more than 150 stores globally as well as a presence in many of the world’s top department stores. However, there have been concerns about its performance as a public company, with its sales and profit performance disappointing many analysts and investors.
ZERO BALANCE Credit cards that allow consumers to transfer balances interest free, are being scaled back as banks and building societies tighten borrowing rules, a Bank of England survey has shown. It found that lenders expected the length of interest-free periods on such transfers to decrease in the coming three months - for the first time since it began recording the data in 2015. They also expect to scale back mortgage availability, affecting borrowers with deposits of less than 25%, and in particular home buyers who have saved up less than 10% of a property’s value. Banks are reining in lending partly as a result of the gloomy economic outlook, as rising inflation and stuttering wage growth squeezing consumers. Bank of England governor Mark Carney voiced concern back in June about increasingly generous terms for zero balance transfers. These allow borrowers to shift debt from one card to another with 0% interest paid on it for a fixed period. Figures published in the Bank’s Financial Stability Report in June showed that the maximum period available on these deals had risen to more than 40 months. Officials have been worried that consumer credit has been growing much faster than household incomes, leading to fears that some people have taken out borrowing they simply cannot afford.
Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.
THE HEALTH TICKET Supermarkets could soon rate the health value of grocery items on the bottom of shoppers’ receipts.The proposal would see the red, amber and green ‘traffic-lights’ system currently used on food packaging to rank the contents of a basket or trolley. The results, which would rate calories, sugar, fat, saturated fat and salt, would then appear on the receipt. Shoppers could instantly see if their basket is too high in calories, sugar and fats meaning they can tailor future shopping trips to make them more healthy. Current front-of-pack traffic light labelling provides nutritional information on a product by product basis.The new concept, which comes as part of National Childhood Obesity Week, aims to evaluate the nutritional content of a consumer’s entire supermarket trolley. Research into the project shows that more than 83% of people currently use traffic light information to assist them in making their food purchases, and more than half said they would like to see the total data displayed on their receipt. It is hoped that the new concept could also be incorporated into supermarket self-scanning devices, which could track the nutritional value of a consumer’s shop as they scan, as well as offer up healthier alternatives.
LUCK OF THE IRISH Accountants at EY have said 59 out of 222 of the UK’s biggest financial services companies have made public statements about moving staff from Britain to the EU because of Brexit. Dublin, which is still scarred by Ireland’s financial crisis, is the top destination with 19 firms mentioning a possible move to the Irish capital. Frankfurt appears to be the second most popular destination, with 18 mentions in EY’s research. Luxembourg, with a population of just 110,000, comes third with 11, and Paris was ranked in fourth place. Banks and other financial services companies are looking to move parts of their business to new continental homes because they are worried Brexit could mean they will lose their “EU passport”, a legal mechanism that permits them to do business in other EU countries from the UK. Xavier Rolet, the boss of the London Stock Exchange, has said that Brexit could lead to as many as 100,000 jobs moving out of London. “The difference three months on from the triggering of article 50 is that we are seeing major financial brands put their contingency plans into action – over a quarter of the companies we track have suggested there will be potential changes to their London base as a result of Brexit,” said Omar Ali, EY’s UK financial services leader.
Personally, l have always looked on cricket as organised loafing.
NATIONAL NEWS THE FUTURE’S GONE LOOPY A futuristic transport project that will see passengers propelled at near-supersonic speeds has declared its first successful test. Hyperloop One, the brainchild of Elon Musk, said it has made a vehicle travel at 70mph for five seconds through the Nevada desert using magnetic levitation. The company’s next goal is to ramp the speed up to 250mph, before aiming for 750mph. It has also created a prototype pod designed to carry people or cargo through the low-pressure tunnel on a cushion of air. “We essentially invented our own sky in a tube,” cofounder Shervin Pishevar declared. “Hyperloop One has accomplished what no one has done before.” Musk has previously described the concept as “a cross between a Concorde, a railgun and an air hockey table.” The project, with Dubai, France, Russia and the US on board, has raised more than $160m, and its owners hope governments interested in trialling the project will regulate and help fund it. Hyperloop One could reduce the journey time from London to Edinburgh to 45 minutes, from Los Angeles to San Francisco to around half an hour. The company says its system offers better safety than passenger jets; lower build and maintenance costs than high-speed trains; and better energy usage per person - similar to that of a bicycle.
FASHION FORWARD APP The online fashion retailer ASOS, has begun testing a feature that allows customers to upload photos snapped from the pages of magazines/social media to search for a similar outfit. Take a snap of your favourite celebrity, pictured in a sequinned gown for example, feed it into the ASOS app and up pop 100 similar styles for you to choose from. About 10% of its customers have access to the software, which flicks through the 85,000 products in ASOS’s digital wardrobe in seconds to find the best match to the look in the picture.
The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.
Rich Jones, ASOS’s head of product and user experience, says the retailer does not yet know whether visual search will change millennials shopping habits. A number of other major high street players are experimenting with visual search including John Lewis and the shopping centre operator Hammerson. Both have used FindSimilar, an app developed by the tech company Cortexica that was spun out of Imperial College London in 2009. The app lets shoppers upload a picture in order to search products on sale at the retailer or more widely across the shopping centre.
Being angry is not necessarily bad, some the best things were invented by angry people. Lamborghini didn’t produce a single car until Enzo Ferrari made him angry.
EASY GO ALPINE
EasyJet is creating a new airline so it can continue flying in the European Union after Brexit. It has applied for a new air operator certificate in Austria at a cost of ten million. It will allow the low-cost carrier to establish easyJetEurope, which will have its headquarters in the Austrian capital Vienna. Since the 1990s, EU airlines have been free to fly between any two points in Europe. This is planning for a worst case scenario should Britain fail to negotiate the same aviation freedoms it currently enjoys as a member of the EU. The company said the move would enable the airline to operate flights both across Europe and domestically within Europe once Britain exits the EU - ‘regardless of the outcome of talks on a future UK-EU aviation agreement’. The establishment of the new hub will create new jobs in Austria, but the airline asserted ‘no jobs will move from the UK to Austria’ and that, ‘nothing will change’ from the perspective of passengers. ‘All of easyJet’s UK employees will continue to be based in Luton and our 11 UK bases and employed as they are today,’ the firm said. UK ministers have said maintaining ‘liberal access’ to European aviation markets will be a ‘top priority’ during the Brexit negotiations which got under way in June.
CUT SHORT Car finance firms are fitting controversial kill switches that immobilise customers’ vehicles if they miss payments. Drivers with poor credit ratings are being offered the GPS devices by lenders, who can then remotely disable cars if motorists fail to meet debt deadlines. But some lawyers and finance experts have voiced concerns about the technology, which they warn could leave drivers stranded and raise dataprotection issues. Under typical arrangements, firms specialising in sub-prime lending install “black boxes” behind the dashboard of customers’ cars. When a driver makes their monthly payment, they receive a code to enter into the device by remote control to keep their car running. If they miss a payment they will not receive a code and the car will be immobilised. The devices are to likely form part of a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) investigation into car finance.
LEWES DISTRICT WINNERS The winners of the 2017 Lewes District Business Awards were announced in July at Lewes Town Hall.
he Lewes District Council sell-event was attended by over 220 people with fourteen trophies presented by BBC News correspondent, Ben Brown. The big winner on the night was Wave Leisure Trust which won Company of the Year. Other winners included Bluebell Railway Plc in the Culture, Leisure & Tourism category, Nathaniel Hepburn of Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft, who is the newlycrowned Businessperson of the Year, Plumpton Racecourse, which won the Best Place to Entertain Clients, and Fundraising Auctions, the 2017 Best Business Growth. Now in their fourth year, the Awards offer a fantastic opportunity for many different types of businesses to come together and celebrate the District’s business talent and achievement, recognising success, innovation and excellence amongst the business community. The winning businesses were chosen by a panel of well-respected judges including Basepoint, Cheesmur Building Contractors, Knill James, LEAP, Brighton & Hove Buses, Richard Soan Roofing Services, Swindells, Veolia, UNIGLOBE, Wave Leisure, Yelo Architects, Platinum Business Magazine, ACES Magazine and Viva Lewes. Commenting on this year’s winners Councillor Andy Smith, Leader of Lewes District Council, said: "This awards scheme showcases the talent, dedication and sheer drive of business leaders from across both the Lewes District. “I am truly honoured to be able to highlight their achievements and wish them continued success in the future.” To learn more about the award winners and out how your business could get involved next year, visit www.lewesdistrictbusinessawards.co.uk
LDBA WINNERS 2017 COMPANY OF THE YEAR
CULTURE, LEISURE & TOURISM
Sponsored by Brighton & Hove Buses WINNER: Wave Leisure Trust
Sponsored by Viva Lewes WINNER: Bluebell Railway Plc
SMALL BUSINESS OF THE YEAR
BEST INDEPENDENT RETAILER
Sponsored by Swindells WINNER: Le Magasin
Sponsored by Wave Leisure Trust WINNER: W. E. Clark & Son Limited
BUSINESSPERSON OF THE YEAR
BEST INDEPENDENT FOOD OR DRINK PRODUCER
Sponsored by Cheesmur Building Contractors WINNER: Nathaniel Hepburn, Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft
Sponsored by Knill James WINNER: Burning Sky Brewery
BEST GREEN BUSINESS
BEST CUSTOMER SERVICE
Sponsored by Veolia WINNER: Harvey & Son (Lewes) Ltd
Sponsored by Basepoint WINNER: Cleankill Pest Control
BUSINESS IN THE COMMUNITY
THE BEST PLACE TO ENTERTAIN CLIENTS
Sponsored by Richard Soan Roofing WINNER: CTLA Community Transport
Sponsored by ACES Magazine WINNER: Plumpton Racecourse
This year’s winners
Business Awards BEST BUSINESS GROWTH
THE PROFESSIONAL SERVICES AWARD
Sponsored by Platinum Business Magazine WINNER: Fundraising Auctions
Sponsored by Yelo Architects WINNER: Wilson Wilson & Hancock Opticians
ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR
THE CREATIVE INDUSTRIES AWARD
Sponsored by LEAP WINNER: Anna Lane - Treatment Tents
Sponsored by UNIGLOBE WINNER: Atelier Dina Malkova
Photos: 1. Company of the Year, 2. Small Business of the Year, 3. Businessperson of the Year, 4. Best Green Business, 5. Business in the Community, 6. Culture, Leisure & Tourism, 7. Best Independent Retailer, 8. Best Independent Food or Drink Producer, 9.Best Customer Service, 10. Best Place to Entertain Clients, 11. Best Business Growth, 12. Entrepreneur of the Year, 13. The Professional Services Award, 14. The Creative Industries Award.
LEADING THE WAY - but don't be complacent by Neil Bellamy, Head of Technology, Media and Telecoms at NatWest
ondon and the South East continues to be the leading hub for UK technology businesses.
But businesses can’t sit back and relax, with a host of regional hubs hot on their tail. According to our latest lending figures, lending to technology, media and telecoms companies in London and the South East grew by 15.5% in the year to May. However, lending in the South West jumped nearly 60% with areas in the North and Midlands not far behind. Figures show that although London and the South East is still a way ahead in terms
of overall lending figures, other regions are catching up, with a hive of lending activity in the past 12 months.
have seen more ransomware attacks so there is huge potential for further growth and innovation in that space.
Software companies continue to represent the largest proportion of high growth businesses as they help businesses to automate, improve efficiency and productivity. This isn’t a new sector (Microsoft is 42 years old this year) but what is often missed is how relevant software development remains for today’s digital economy and how much room is left for growth.
And finally unified comms (UC) businesses which help businesses digitalise and unify their communications strategies. SME businesses in particular are doing well in this space – taking advantage of their ability to tailor services for a customer’s needs where larger businesses struggle with their higher cost to service model.
Cyber security is undoubtedly one of the biggest risk factors for most businesses as they transform digitally. Only this week, we
The role of universities in the region’s growth can not be overstated, with high levels of research and development into innovation across the fields of communications, robotic autonomous systems and digital
Technology entertainment. And we’re lucky to be able to work with some of the bright sparks of tomorrow through our partnership with university incubators. In June, we joined forces with RocketSpace to open their first technology campus in the UK. Housed in NatWest’s Regent’s House in London, the campus will be home to around 1,500 high-tech, high-growth companies. As they scale up their business, the tech companies will benefit not only from office space and a collaborative environment, but also global access to RocketSpace’s unique community and services.
The role of universities in the region’s growth can not be overstated, with high levels of research and development into innovation across the fields of communications, robotic autonomous systems and digital entertainment
RocketSpace (pictured right) has worked with more than 1,000 tech scale-ups since it was founded in 2011, including some of the most recognisable names in technology such as Uber, Spotify and Blippa.
Our partnership with RocketSpace further strengthens the bank’s support to the technology sector, which remains an important growth area for the UK. Over the past two and a half years, the bank has been helping new businesses, including many tech start-ups, through the Entrepreneurial Spark powered by NatWest programme, which is also due to open a London hub in August this year.
The programme has supported a total of 1,736 companies, raised £151m of investment and created 3,152 jobs, and will be a great addition to the London technology space. It’s not hard to see why London and the South East continues to lead on all things technology, and with the government’s continued investment in the Golden Triangle of London, Oxford and Cambridge, it’s unlikely they will be surpassed by another city.
And there has never been a better time to start up a technology business. Thanks to new technology you can literally set up a business from your smart phone on your kitchen table – so getting a business started has never been cheaper or easier. There are also so many ways to use other people’s technology to scale up your business – like through the cloud – so opportunity and potential is unlimited.
The Big Story
THE CHAMPION OF THE CENTRE In an era of chaotic and surprising election results, perhaps the most startling is the victory of Emmanuel Macron as President of France. Ignoring years of dominance by the traditional political parties, he created a brand new party, En Marche! and disrupted the whole French establishment. Still in his 30s, who is this new force on the world stage? Can he succeed in uniting France and saving the European project? And, as we enter the choppy waters of Brexit, should we be worried about this determined young man? Profile by Ian Trevett
n the end the election of Emmanuel Macron was no surprise. The final showdown was a straight battle between the centrist ex-banker and the far-right figurehead Marine Le Pen, President of the Front National. Le Pen had attempted to distance the party from its image of racism, anti-semitism and Vichy-apologism, but the French people ultimately rejected the divisive vision of Le Pen. Macron romped home, taking 65% of the vote.
The surprise was that he was the last man standing to take on Le Pen. To reach the final round of voting he (and Le Pen) brushed aside generations of political history, wiping out Les Républicains (the French equivalent of the Conservative party recently lead by Nicolas Sarkozy) and the Parti Socialiste (similar to the Labour Party, formerly headed by François Hollande).
Brigitte Trogneux on meeting Macron when he was only 15: “Nobody will ever know at what moment our story became a love story. That belongs to us. That is our secret.”
Soon after the Presidential Elections, Macron consolidated his power in the French Parliamentary Elections, where En Marche! in coalition with another centrist party won a landslide 350 seats out of a total of 577.
To put this in context, on the eve of the Parliamentary Elections, the New Statesman’s European correspondent, Pauline Bock wrote: “The entire French left is about to disintegrate. It’s as if the Labour party disappeared overnight.” And it wasn’t much better for the Républicains.
The Big Story The Macron revolution can reinvigorate France - but it may not all be good news for the UK.
The View from the UK 1 So here’s to you, Mrs Auziere Macron? Isn’t he the one who married his teacher? Now he is President, finally the focus is on Macron’s political plans and how they will affect Brexit, rather than his, shall we say, unorthodox domestic arrangement. Macron was studying at a Catholic school in Amiens when he took on the lead role in the school play at the age of 15. The teacher was 39-year-old Brigitte Auziere, a married mother of three. Her daughter Laurence was in the same class as the young Emmanuel. Brigitte was clearly impressed by young Emmanuel’s acting skills. Seeds of a romance, which last to this day, began when Macron was still at school and under the age of consent. There is no evidence of sexual liaisons at this age, but the connection was immediate. Even without proof of intimacy, could this not be interpreted as grooming? Certainly if the genders were reversed, this would of been a much more serious matter. Double standards?
Macron supports open borders, free trade, free movement of labor, and greater efforts to accommodate refugees and assimilate Muslim minorities
Bock summarised Macron’s achievement: “The rise of Macron and En Marche! has shattered the accepted wisdom of French politics: 39 is too young for a president; one cannot be “neither left nor right”; a career in the private sector does not lead to politics; no one can run for the presidency without the support of a pre-existing party.”
Macron’s parents were stunned when they learned that he was romantically involved with his teacher. They believed their son was actually in love with her daughter Laurence. They promptly removed him from school and sent him to finish his education in Paris.
Macron’s mother told biographer, Anne Fulda, that she told Brigitte: “Don’t you see. You’ve had your life. But he won’t have children with you.”
Everything changes. Such is the disillusionment of politics that the support of a pre-existing party may now be the kiss of death. Will Hutton wrote, “It has become obvious that neither the left nor right has the philosophical or intellectual wherewithal to make France work. An ancien régime of tired and corrupt conservative and socialist politicians, indissolubly linked to the ‘immobilisme’ that has plagued France, has been swept away… Nor should anyone underestimate the profound dissatisfaction across France with the status quo. Some 90% of Parisians voted En Marche! – the capital, as in Britain, foretells opinion and events.”
But Brigitte refused to promise the parents that she would stay away and told them: “I cannot promise you anything.”
En Marche! (translated: On the Move) began initially in April 2106 as a political club, a door-to-door operation in which volunteers asked the public what was wrong with France. Three months later, more than 3,000 people attended its first event in Paris. The movement welcomed people of all political parties, allowing them to sign up for free online. It is run more like a disruptive tech startup than a traditional political party.
Macron vowed to marry Brigitte when he was just 17. As for Brigitte, she simply says, “Nobody will ever know at what moment our story became a love story. That belongs to us. That is our secret.”
The result is a whole new generation of elected politicians - around half of the candidates are political novices, drawn from diverse backgrounds including academia and business. They include a mathematician, a former bullfighter and anti-corruption magistrates.
However Fulda also wrote: “Emmanuel’s parents were keen on emphasising that they did not lodge a complaint against Brigitte Auziere for corruption of a minor.”
The issue seems to have barely
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registered in France. In fact, the only time sexual relationships intervened in the election campaign was when rumours circulated of a homosexual liaison with Radio France chief executive Mathieu Gallet. Macron dismissed the rumours with a reference to a rival candidate making an earlier appearance as a ‘hologram’: “If you’re told I lead a double life with Mr Gallet it’s because my hologram has escaped,” he said. If the 39-year-old teacher had been the male and the the student female, it could have been a very different story - surely resulting in arrest for underage sex or the grooming of a minor. Instead it is presented as an enduring love story. The couple, at least in public, seem to have a great deal affection for each other and they remain together some 24 years later.
The View from the UK 2 A threat to the City? From the UK perspective, Macron is not just a charming young politician disrupting old political institutions. He could be a serious threat to our wealth, power and prosperity. For years, the French have sat by helplessly as their top bankers, financiers, IT experts and economists have crossed the channel and helped the City of London’s drive for
world dominance in the financial markets. French newspaper Le Figaro reports that an estimated 60,000 French people work just in the financial centres of The City of London and Canary Wharf. As a fellow member of the EU, they could do nothing - free movement of labour (and brain power) lies at the heart of the entire project.
relocate to Paris - only to be met with laughter.
Anonymous City Banker: “You have one country inviting us home and the other that’s sadly pushing us out! The energy in France from Macron’s election is something we crave and it’s something that that’s been sorely missing in London lately.”
from top French schools have long been the brainpower behind the City’s supremacy in structured products and are now helping to create the new generation of risk management systems and artificial intelligence products.
Brexit changes all that. Or at least that’s what France hoped. The reality was actually looking very different. There have been many stories from the city about French officials trying to persuade banks and institutions to
Why would a city firm move to France with its high taxes, inflexibility and rigid rights for workers. Brexit or no Brexit, London was always going to win. But with Macron as President, all bets are off and recruitment firms are already sensing a change in the air. Sarah Butcher, from efinancialcareers.com writes, “The City of London is a city of French bankers. Graduates
“Now that one of their own is in the Elysee Palace will these storied French bankers who’ve helped make the City what it is want to go home again? For some at least, the answer is yes. “One French Managing Director at a Swiss bank in London said, “You have one country inviting us home and the other that’s sadly pushing us out! The energy in France from Macron’s election is something we crave and it’s something that that’s been sorely missing in London lately.”
So how serious a problem is this? The City of London’s Brexit envoy Jeremy Browne has warned UK Treasury Ministers that Macron’s France has effectively declared open war on London’s Square Mile: “The clear messages emanating from Paris are not just the musings of a rogue senior official in the French government or central bank. France could not be clearer about their intentions. They see Britain and the City of London as adversaries, not partners.” “[There are]… French representatives crashing around London’ offering big sums to firms to move to Paris.
“The meeting with the French Central Bank was the worst I have had anywhere in the
The Big Story the 35-hour working week. In the UK, the maximum is 48 hours, but few people even know this, as it can be easily side-stepped with the agreement of the employee. French employers also have to allow workers 11 consecutive hours of rest between each working day. And it is far more difficult to make a French worker redundant. These rights are cherished by French workers and any attempt to interfere with these is soon met by fierce street protests.
EU. They are in favour of the hardest Brexit. They want disruption. They actively seek disaggregation of financial services provision.” With cash incentives and Macron’s determination to take on the rigid labour laws and restrictions on working hours, the City of London is starting to look very nervous. Macron is even stealing a march on our treasured ‘special relationship’ with America. Whatever Macron may think of Donald Trump, he is a pragmatist, and he went out of his way to make Trump very welcome at the country’s Bastille Day celebrations - including an uncomfortably long handshake. Trump showered compliments on his host: “Our two nations are forever joined together by the spirit of revolution and the fight for freedom. “France is America’s first and oldest ally - a lot of people don’t know that.” The EU was created to keep competing nations under one roof, but old habits die hard. Our relationship with France could be a story that comes to the fore again in coming years.
According to the International Monetary Fund, the purchasing power of French gross domestic product per head was the same as that of the UK in 2016… French labour productivity per hour is the same as Germany’s and 28% above the UK’s. Its distribution of disposable income is far less unequal than in the US or UK “So what are its economic problems? Essentially, there are three: low employment; the low rate of economic growth; and the sheer scale of public spending.” Macron’s plan is to make the French labour laws and public spending levels more aligned to ours. Much of our legislation around union power, working hours and rights surrounding dismissals have been a result of the battles between Mrs Thatcher and the unions in the 1980s. The defeat of the Miners Strike in 1985 left the union movement almost powerless to oppose any workplace legislations they would have previously fought. In France, the influence of the unions remains and this power is best illustrated with
Macron seems determined to take these issues face on, as well as reduce public spending. John Cassidy in The New Yorker comments, “On the French left, he is widely seen as the Gallic equivalent of Tony Blair, a youthful figure intent on forcing trade unions and workers to submit to the rigors of the global market.” Macron is committed to ensure French budget deficit is brought under the EUimposed limit of 3% of GDP — for the first time in years. In doing so, he aims to gain the respect of Angela Merkel, so he can forward his own EU agenda with her in partnership. He strives for deeper eurozone integration. Cassidy reports, “Macron supports open borders, free trade, free movement of labor, and greater efforts to accommodate refugees and assimilate Muslim minorities—all of which are under threat. His big idea is that, by showing that France is capable of serious internal reforms, the country will be able to persuade Germany to shift the E.U. toward a less austere economic policy, one more favorable to growth.” The question is can he do it? He is
Can Macron make France great again? Before their love-in on Bastille Day, Trump and Macron had been sniping at each other. When Trump declared his contempt of the Paris Climate Agreement, Macron taunted Trump by distorting Donald’s slogan to: ‘Make Our Planet Great Again’. But can he make France great again? The country is not exactly flat-lining, but there is a disillusionment with politicians (marked by a very low turn-out at the elections) and the country can often look divided. The FT’s Martin Wolf writes, “France is no basket case. It is a wealthy country with excellent infrastructure and public services.
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The Big Story unburdened by party divides and has a strong mandate from the Parliamentary Elections. But the demos have already started. The protestors turned out in force when Trump came to France, but most vitriol seemed to be aimed at Macron’s attacks on labour rights. Compared to Le Pen, he is undoubtedly a moderate, but he is fast becoming the left’s new bogeyman. The question, therefore, is: is he strong enough to force his reforms through? Paul Taylor from Politico Europe (a Brusselsbased European affairs weekly newspaper) can see a steely strength in Macron:
At the French Central Bank … they are in favour of the hardest Brexit. They want disruption. They actively seek disaggregation of financial services provision.
“In this era of illiberal authoritarianism, Emmanuel Macron is trademarking a paradoxical brand: the liberal strongman.
Macron completed his high school education at the prestigious Lycée Henri IV in Paris. He went on to study philosophy at Nanterre University and public affairs at Sciences Po, before graduating from the elite École Nationale d’Administration in 2004. His brother and sister also excelled and both pursued a career in medicine following in the footsteps of their parents; his younger brother became a cardiologist and his sister a nephrologist. After graduation, Macron went to work for the French Finance Ministry as an inspector. Forging powerful connections, he was tapped by President Nicolas Sarkozy in 2007 to join the Attali Commission on economic growth.
focusing on economic and financial matters. One success was brokering a compromise with Germany over the eurozone crisis. In 2014, Macron was named France’s minister of economy, industry and digital data, but he became disillusioned with the party, and in 2016 he set up formed a new centrist party called En Marche! There can be few politicians with such an understanding of business, and this will be a great asset for Macron. He could become a difficult opponent for the UK, when it comes to attracting and retaining businesses and financial institutions. Brexit will place Macron on the other side of the table.
The following year, Macron left civil service for the world of investment banking at Rothschild & Co. He rose through the ranks to become managing director, earning renown for his role in advising Nestlé’s $12 billion acquisition of a division of Pfizer in 2012.
This is a shame, as I admire this politician and what he has already achieved. He looks comfortable on the world stage and has a strong vision, determination and energy. Certainly our current crop of leaders or would-be leaders do not match up well against Monsieur Macron.
When Socialist Party leader François Hollande was elected President in 2012, Macron became deputy secretary-general,
I would wish him well, but I fear that his success may be to our detriment.
How the cartoonists drew Macron: Adams in The Telegraph and Ingram Pinn in the FT
“… With bone-crunching handshakes and plain speaking, he seems determined to show himself as much the alpha male on the global stage as Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin or Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, but in the cause of liberal values — multilateral governance, open trade, human rights and diversity — that makes him the antithesis of their nationalist ideologies. “… Macron’s role models are De Gaulle and Francois Mitterrand, each of whom had grand, long-term objectives — decolonisation and modernisation for the former, social justice and European integration for the latter — that enabled France to punch above its weight on the world stage. Macron’s objectives are a fusion of theirs: economic reform and European integration.” It certainly appears he is a man to watch.
Who is Emmanuel Macron? Emmanuel Jean-Michel Frédéric Macron was born on December 21, 1977, in Amiens, France. The eldest child of two doctors, Macron distinguished himself with his intellect at an early age, displaying an aptitude for literature, politics and theatre. His teacher, Mrs Auziere, at the local Jesuit school La Providence, certainly spotted potential in the young Emmanuel.
BENEFITS ALL ROUND
This month MHA Carpenter Box Partner, Chris Coopey, highlights how tax-efficient employee benefits can retain valued employees and benefit a business at the same time.
s an employer you want to hold on to your staff, right? The disruption of losing a valued team member and the cost of recruitment add up to big numbers, but the intangibles such as the loss of a client relationship also mean that it makes perfect sense to glue your people in as far as you can. Of course, there’s cost to consider, but by using tax-efficient, flexible employee benefits, you can deliver greater actual value to your employees without necessarily increasing those costs. This can help you to keep up with the
• Diversifying the reward structure to include other forms of remuneration such as shares, securities or options.
• Aligning employee interests with those of the company by giving them a stake in the business.
• Using salary sacrifice for pension contributions, childcare vouchers and other tax or National Insurance Contributions (NIC) favoured benefits.
• Offering a deferred gain linked to performance targets.
competition in both attracting, and of course, retaining your top talent.
In addition to considering the usual taxefficient benefits, employers can design benefits packages, which provide employees with what they really want, without costing the employer a fortune. These include:
• Introducing voluntary benefits where employers can use their purchasing power to obtain reduced rates for benefits that the employees actually want.
Long term reward structures are effective in attracting and retaining talent. Those rewards can also be of significant value when: • Growing a sustainable and profitable business.
Employees can be offered shares, or the option to acquire shares, at a future date. Certain other types of incentive awards may be structured with the gains taxed at the lower capital gains tax rates, giving the employees more money in their pocket. In addition to motivating the workforce, some plans can have monetary benefits for the company by having no requirement to pay employer’s NIC on rewards. Some equity based rewards can also offer further valuable corporation tax savings for companies.
Finance Enterprise Management Incentive A popular tax-efficient scheme for smaller entrepreneurial companies is the Enterprise Management Incentive (EMI) share option scheme. EMI options can be granted to employees on a discretionary basis. This gives the employee the right to purchase shares in the company in the future at a price which is agreed at the time the options are granted. The terms under which the employee can purchase the shares in the future can be designed to align with the interests of the business. For example, using performance targets or only permitting exercise of the options immediately prior to a company sale or flotation.
the shares. EMI is just one of a variety of discretionary tax-efficient incentive plans, but if EMI is not the right solution for your business, there are bespoke plans available.
tax and/or NIC savings. Approval should be sought from HMRC to ensure that the relevant conditions for salary sacrifice are met, and care should be taken since salary sacrifice may not be beneficial for all employees.
Although in most cases there is income tax relief for pension contributions, there is no relief for NICs. However, NIC savings can be achieved via salary sacrifice arrangements whereby the employee agrees to take a reduction in salary, and the employer makes an equivalent contribution to the pension scheme.
Where an employer cannot afford to offer benefits, it can offer a voluntary arrangement instead. This is where the employee pays the costs but still benefits from the employer’s bulk buying power. This often applies to common insurance benefits.
Salary sacrifice arrangements for other tax-favoured benefits can also achieve both
No single benefit structure will motivate or suit every individual. Using a range of awards, benefits and flexible packages can reflect the diversity of a workforce.
EMI plans have no tax charge for the company, and the company will often be entitled to a corporation tax deduction for the growth in value of the underlying shares. For the employee, the growth in the share value, above the value when they were granted the option, will be subject to the lower rates of capital gains tax. This is instead of income tax and any potential NIC when they ultimately sell
‘MAKING TAX DIGITAL’ - THE COUNTDOWN HAS STARTED! Making Tax Digital (MTD) is coming and when it does all businesses will have to keep records digitally and send HM Revenue & Customs information on a quarterly basis. But instead of seeing this as an extra administrative burden, look at it as a positive change to your business! Here are five reasons why MTD may be a good thing for your business: 1. Save time If you keep your bookkeeping up-to-date then you won’t have a problem submitting the information required under MTD. Software now will do this far quicker than ever before - in fact, you could actually save time on bookkeeping if you choose the right product (and we can help)! 2. Reclaim more By keeping things up-to-date you are less likely to forget to claim business expenses back. With modern software such as QuickBooks Online or Xero, you can even take a picture of every receipt you get and upload it straight into the system. 3. Better value for money Using accounting software means you are less likely to make mistakes. If you don’t make mistakes, then your accountant has less to correct and can spend more time talking to you about the things you can do to improve your business, giving you more value for money. 4. Real-time information If your bookkeeping is up-to-date then you will be able to see real time figures for your business’ performance. Knowing how the business is performing means you are better able to make informed decisions to help to improve the profitability of the business. 5. Improve cash flow planning If your records are up-to-date, you will be able to get your annual accounts produced much sooner than you do now. By doing this you can then find out what tax you have to pay well in advance of when it’s due, helping you to better plan your cash flow.
To find out more about MTD keep an eye on our website www.carpenterbox.com or give us call on 01293 227670 to talk about the software best suited to your business needs.
THE RESULTS ARE IN What does the election result mean for residential landlords and investors? Stephen Metcalf, Senior Manager at Kreston Reeves explains all.
o, the election proved rather difficult for the Conservatives and Theresa May, resulting in a hung parliament with the Tories unable to produce a majority. The Government passed the Queens Speech, and are set to govern in a loose agreement with the Democratic Unionist Party to support them on important parliamentary votes. So, what does this all mean for tax policy, and how will landlords be affected?
No major tax increases? If this minority government can survive, we would expect it only to do so without any dramatic changes to their agreed manifesto. We saw earlier this year with the planned national insurance increase announced at the Budget, that even with a majority government it is difficult to do anything outside of the manifesto. For as long as the minority Tory government is around, we should expect much the same.
This could be seen as good news from a tax perspective, with the planned tax free
years - without any increases to Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax or VAT. For landlords this,
personal allowances and basic rate band increases to be introduced over the next few
unfortunately, also means that the deeply unpopular tax relief restriction on mortgage interest is expected to survive, with the gradual implementation continuing from now through to April 2020 when the full restriction is in place.
It is normal for there to be both winners and losers out of any Budget changes. Many feel that landlords have been on a losing streak in recent years under Tory guidance, and arguably this would continue under a Labour government.
There are however social issues, such as elderly care and improving schools, which will have to be paid for. The Tories intend to do this with a continued austerity drive to reduce costs, rather than increase taxes. Local housing allowance rates have been under immense pressure in recent times, and this is likely to remain with Tories committed to freezing these allowances further, making it harder for local councils to fund.
Making Tax Digital? Another significant concern for many small businesses and landlords is the introduction of
Finance quarterly reporting of income and expenses online, as part of a wider drive under the guise of “making tax digital” to bring tax compliance into the modern age, with the stated aim of simplifying and improving the information flow between taxpayers and HMRC. Due to start from 6th April 2018 and with the first quarterly report due by 5th August 2018, some respite was given in the Budget for those business owners and landlords with turnover of less than the VAT threshold (currently £85,000) to start a year later. However, the snap election got in the way of some important making tax digital legislation, casting some doubt over the timing of these new requirements. One immediate concern is that Jane Ellison MP, the appointed lead for making tax digital, lost her seat in Battersea. Will this lead to further uncertainty and delay over implementation whilst her replacement is found and briefed? We just don’t know.
But what if… If Theresa May and the DUP cannot make a government work, it is entirely possible that Labour, seeing an ever-increasing popularity around their policies, will look to step up. A stark contrast to the Conservative manifesto of cost cutting to fund increasing social costs, the Labour manifesto was clear in its intention to raise taxes to their highest peace-time level, with a firm commitment to increase spending on many areas including schools and university tuition, the NHS and social care. So, what would a first Labour budget in over seven years look like? Income Tax increases for individuals earning more than £80,000. They will face the top rate of tax of 45%, currently paid only by individuals with income of more than £150,000, with a new rate of tax of 50% for those earning over £123,000. This will potentially increase the impact of the mortgage restriction relief changes, where landlords, who under old rules determined their level of profits after interest paid, now having to calculate profits before finance costs, such that someone receiving £90,000 total rents with mortgage interest costs of £50,000 would face a tax rate of 45% instead of 20% under the pre-April 2016 rules. For those who have considered moving their rental portfolio into a limited company to take advantage of lower corporation tax rates might also be disappointed, with the intended increase to 26%, compared with a stated aim under the Tories of reducing to 17%.
More number crunching will be required to understand the advantages and disadvantages of operating under different entities. Inheritance Tax (IHT) increases are also back on the agenda, with Labour intending on halving the current tax-free thresholds applicable to married couples. Those with significant property interests will argue that IHT has increased over the last eight years without this further attack, due to a lack of tax free threshold increases compared with significant growth in property values during that time anyway.
If Theresa May and the DUP cannot make a government work, it is entirely possible that Labour, seeing an everincreasing popularity around their policies, will look to step up.
Whilst not spelled out in the Labour manifesto itself, Jeremy Corbyn had mentioned early in the election campaign that recent Capital Gains Tax (CGT) rate cuts would be reversed to pay for extra policing. Of course, there was no cut to residential property CGT (this remaining at 28% for higher rate taxpayers), so this might not impact landlords; although, under previous Labour governments, we have seen CGT rates equal to Income Tax levels.
On the flip side, expect a Labour government to support those with housing needs, which might assist in pushing up rental rates. Labour have also suggested that they will push for three year tenancy agreements, which whilst aimed at helping tenants, will possibly reduce risk and uncertainty for landlords as well. In summary, tax is ever changing and evolving, with at least one Budget each year with the potential to change significant legislation each time. It is normal for there to be both winners and losers out of any Budget changes. Many feel that landlords have been on a losing streak in recent years under Tory guidance, and arguably this would continue under a Labour government. The great unknown for all is the Brexit impact – if negotiations go well, would the economy start to see improvements for all, such that tax levels could be cut, or perhaps we will see an expensive exit that will make current spending commitments and tax levels completely unsustainable. Stephen Metcalf is a senior manager in the Private Client Tax Team at accountants, business and financial advisers Kreston Reeves. He can be reached by email stephen. email@example.com www.krestonreeves.com
business. tax. wealth.
PROTECTING AND ENFORCING YOUR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS Enforcing intellectual property rights is now much more affordable for the SME. Tim Ashdown, Partner, and Hattie Chessher, Solicitor at DMH Stallard, explain.
ou will have intellectual property (IP) in your business to some extent. It might be obvious and readily identifiable, such as a distinctive trading style, a customer database or copyright in the software you sell or licence. It might however be less obvious, such as copyright in your internal written policies, topography rights in semi-conductors or confidentiality in the black art or pixie dust which your employees use to operate a secret
process. You might also need to ensure that you own IP which is rightly yours, for example where you commission a third party to develop some software, create some artwork or help you maintain a customer database. There is an important commercial exercise there, which should be completed at the outset, to ensure the IP is owned by you. Most of you will understand the benefits of
identifying the IP in your business and deciding which, if any, elements of it justify protection through registration, management or other investment where required. If nothing else, you need to move quickly if your IP is stolen or copied without licence. Timing is often critical where counterfeit goods are flooding the market, or a bad employee takes a database of customer information and attempts to sell it or use it as an unlawful springboard to
Timing is often critical where counterfeit goods are flooding the market, or a bad employee takes a database of customer information and attempts to sell it or use it as an unlawful springboard to compete.
compete. You might also lose the right to an early injunction if you delay; and not having your IP identified, registered and/or effectively managed will make enforcement much harder. So, you’d be well advised to conduct, record and regularly update an audit of your IP and how it is managed. Also, don’t forget, please don’t disclose any ideas or information which you might subsequently want to patent or claim to be confidential – these things need to be carefully managed using non-disclosure agreements etc.
Isn’t it very expensive to enforce my IP rights through the court? Having decided to what extent you want to protect your IP, you may at some point need to take action to stop an infringer, whether they be innocent or not. This is often where businesses become nervous and will assume that the cost of taking action through the courts will be out of their reach.
Having decided to what extent you want to protect your IP, you may at some point need to take action to stop an infringer, whether they be innocent or not.
Many of the infringers we see are sophisticated and calculating. However, an equal measure are not, and will quickly apologise, give assurances and often offer compensation with little resistance. Those which are more calculating will ignore you or just prevaricate, bogging you down in detailed discussion about whether you own the rights you say you have (see above for the need to get your IP house in order). Sometimes court proceedings are unavoidable.
streamlined forum for the enforcement of IP rights where the value of the claim is under £500,000 (or you are prepared to cap your claim at that level). Trials are limited to just two days and document disclosure and witness evidence is only allowed in relation to certain issues which have been agreed with the specialist IPEC Judge. Further, the maximum legal costs that the losing party will be ordered to pay is normally capped at £50,000 for the liability stage, and £25,000 if there is a subsequent hearing to assess damages. This cap on legal costs is particularly useful as it removes the frightening uncertainty that parties to High Court litigation face in terms of the potential to have to pay the other side’s legal costs, which there is a limited ability to control, if the case is lost. DMH Stallard was involved in some of the early cases in IPEC which defined the court’s jurisdiction and powers, including Xena Systems Ltd v Cantideck & Another  EWPCC 1. There is additionally a specialist small claims track in IPEC, which can resolve IP claims valued at under £10,000. Orders for
compensation up to that sum, destruction or delivery up of infringing items and, most importantly, final injunctions (the court orders that prevent the infringer from repeating the offending conduct) are all available as remedies in respect of claims issued in this track. There are no orders for costs made in this court, regardless of the outcome, other than for misconduct. Where compensation is not the priority, but an injunction to prevent infringing activity is, this court is ideal. You’ve acquired your IP because you’ve invested in its creation or purchased it. It deserves to be protected and the IPEC now enables you to do that with far more clarity as to the implications of doing so. If you have any questions about any matters arising from this article, would like an IP audit or any advice regarding your IP, please contact Tim Ashdown on firstname.lastname@example.org or Hattie Chessher on hattie.chessher@dmhstallard. com or 01273 329833.
The good news is that we have access to a specialist Intellectual Property Enterprise Court (IPEC), which provides a cheaper and more
INSURANCE DISPUTES: “FULL DISCLOSURE” OR “FAIR PRESENTATION” What’s the difference? When the new Insurance Act came into force in August 2016, it brought with it significant changes to the obligations on businesses to provide their insurer with relevant information when applying for insurance. Michael Axe in RB’s Commercial Disputes team looks at the practical effects of these changes one year on from implementation.
he Insurance Act 2015 was unquestionably the biggest overhaul of insurance legislation in a generation, and one of the biggest changes was in relation to the disclosure obligations owed by businesses to their insurers. Businesses have seen a relaxation of the disclosure obligations, as for the first time, insurers now share the responsibility for ensuring that all relevant information is available when the policy is taken out.
Business Insurance The Act only applies to “non-consumer” insurance contracts (the law relating to
The Act was intended to acknowledge that, where “non-consumer” insurance contracts are concerned, there is unlikely to be a ‘one size fits all’ solution, and so there needs to be a degree of flexibility built into the legislation.
“consumer” insurance having been reformed separately in 2013), which covers everything except insurance taken out by an individual not acting in relation to his trade or profession. In essence, this means that all business-related insurance policies will be “non-consumer” insurance contracts, and will come within the scope of the Act.
The Duty of “Fair Presentation” The Act replaced the customers’ traditional “duty to disclose” all relevant information to the insurer when applying for insurance with a new “duty of fair presentation”. This new duty
Legal is less onerous on the customer, and requires the insurer to take a more proactive role in assessing whether it has been provided with sufficient information. The consequences for breaching the new duty of fair presentation are also different from the consequences of breaching the duty to disclose. In broad terms, the new duty of fair presentation means that the customer needs to disclose to the insurer either all “material circumstances” which are known to the customer, or sufficient information to put a “prudent insurer” on notice that it needs to make further enquiries in order to elicit all “material circumstances”. It is this second alternative limb to the duty which is the significant departure from the previous “duty to disclose”, which was an absolute duty that the customer owed to the insurer. The second limb of the duty of fair presentation means, for the first time, that the insurer has to take a degree of responsibility in relation to the disclosure of information when the policy is taken out. If the disclosure made by the customer is not enough to satisfy the first limb (ie it does not disclose all material circumstances), but it is enough to put a “prudent insurer” on notice of the need to make further enquiries, then the burden transfers from the customer to the insurer, which must then make the necessary further enquiries. The hope is that this will prevent insurers from simply taking a passive role in relation to the information provided at the time that the insurance policy is taken out, and then subsequently purporting to deny cover to the customer on the grounds of non-disclosure once a claim is made.
Consequences of breach Provided that the breach of the duty of fair presentation was not deliberate or reckless, the consequences of the breach will depend on what the insurer would have done if fair presentation had been made: • If the insurer would not have provided cover at all, then the insurer can “avoid” (ie terminate) the insurance contract and can decline cover for all claims, although it does have to refund the insurance premium to the customer. • If the insurer would have only provided cover on different terms, then the insurance contract can be treated as if it was subject to those additional/alternative terms. • If the insurer would have only provided cover in return for a higher insurance premium, then the insurer can reduce
the amount paid out on a claim by a proportionate amount to reflect the higher premium. If, however, the breach of the duty of fair presentation was deliberate or reckless, then the insurer can “avoid” the insurance contract and decline cover for all claims, and it doesn’t have to refund the insurance premium to the customer.
Other amendments to be implemented by the Insurance Act 2015 This article focuses on what, for businesses, is arguably the biggest practical change to insurance law under the Act - the replacement of the “duty to disclose” with the “duty of fair presentation”. There are, however, a host of other reforms to insurance law that were implemented by the Act when it came into force, including in relation to insurance warranties, fraudulent claims, and third parties’ rights against insurers.
Although the Act came into force a year ago, we are still waiting for a clear indication from the Courts as to how they will apply and interpret these new statutory provisions in specific cases.
The Act also allows the parties to “contract out” of certain provisions of the Act in individual insurance contracts, but only if the Act’s transparency requirements have been met. These transparency requirements are designed to protect businesses when insurers attempt to contract out of certain protective
provisions under the Act to the business’ detriment. Full transparency requires: • The insurer to take sufficient steps to draw any terms which are more disadvantageous to the customer, as a result of contracting out of the Act, to the customer’s attention before the insurance contract is entered into. • The disadvantageous term is clear and unambiguous as to its effect. In assessing whether the insurer has provided full transparency in relation to any contracted out provisions, the Courts will take into account the specific circumstances of the individual customer and transaction.
A new legal landscape The Act was intended to acknowledge that, where “non-consumer” insurance contracts are concerned, there is unlikely to be a ‘one size fits all’ solution, and so there needs to be a degree of flexibility built into the legislation. Although the Act came into force a year ago, we are still waiting for a clear indication from the Courts as to how they will apply and interpret these new statutory provisions in specific cases. However, there is little question that the Act (including a recent amendment that came into force in May 2017 which requires insurers to make prompt payments when claims are made), has shifted the balance of power between insurers and businesses in an attempt to redress the earlier imbalances.
For more information on these or any other issues relating to insurance disputes, please contact Michael Axe in the Commercial Disputes team on 01293 527744. This document is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this document.
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GENERATING LEADS IS AS EASY AS 1, 2, 3 Beth Nash, from digital marketing agency Smart Monkey, on the power of Search Engine Optimisation.
o you’ve got a website… but how are people finding it? The sad truth is that you can have the best website in the world, but if people can’t find it, then it’s pointless. Search engines like Google and Yahoo are the number one channel people use to find your website, and search is a highly effective way for brands and businesses to reach most customers. According to a research study by Forrester Consulting* in 2016, 95% of consumers use search to discover or find out about new products and services. Compare this with only 50% indicating that they discovered a product or service via TV advertising, and it is plain to see that search is the dominant channel. The good news is that it is easy to get your website onto the search engines. The bad news is that it is difficult to get your website to rank high enough for your target audiences to find. But why is where you rank so important? A study ** based on the analysis of 465 thousand keywords, across five thousand websites, in July 2014, showed the difference in potential business depending on where you rank. The website page in position one of Google, typically gets around 31% of all clicks on that page. The web page in position two gets 14%. The page in position three gets 10% and if we look at positions 6-10 combined, they get around 3.7% of all clicks. Web pages ranked on page two of Google get around 4% of clicks and if you’re on page 3, it drops to 1.6% of clicks. Let’s put this into context: Acme Solicitors, based in Sussex, is currently ranked at the bottom of page one of Google. There are 1,300 searches every month in Sussex for the keyword ‘solicitor’, so they are getting minimal visits to their site and only one enquiry if they are lucky every month (Search Engine
Land state that the average landing page conversion rate is around 2.35%).
With work optimising the Acme website, they start to see improvements in the number of leads they are receiving. In January, their rank for this keyword improves to number four and they start getting a regular two leads every month. In March, they move up to rank three and get three to four leads. By June, they have reached rank two and are now receiving four to five leads. Then the holy grail, in October, they achieve rank one and rocket to ten leads every month.
This information shows the importance of ranking as high as possible on Google. Even one or two places can mean big increases in search engine traffic and potential leads. And this is only the start – what if we increase the landing page conversion rate (some websites are proving 10-11%) and target other related keywords? At Smart Monkey, we love helping businesses generate more quality leads - get in touch for a complementary consultation to see how we can help you.
* https://www.catalystdigital.com/wp-content/ uploads/WhySearchPlusSocialEqualsSuccess-Catalyst. pdf ** https://www.advancedwebranking.com/googlectr-study-2014.html
BIO: Beth is a Chartered Marketer and ‘Head Honcho & Chief of Client Happiness’ at digital marketing agency, Smart Monkey. Since 2006, Smart Monkey has been helping small and medium sized businesses in Sussex, Surrey and Kent generate revenue through effective and measurable digital marketing campaigns.
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CEO Fight Club
CEO THE LITTLE THINGS OF STRATEGY By Si Conroy, owner of Scarlet Monday
love strategy for the little things. Other business
the things that need to be done well so easily,
strategy problem is the first step on the road to
leaders will talk about getting everything else
why is it so tough to succeed? I’m sure you know
recovery, so I challenge my clients to answer the
sorted in their business so that they can focus
at least one person who thinks they could run a
successful restaurant, if only…
1. If your business disappeared tomorrow,
on big, important strategic things. That’s their job after all. But if you’re a leader, and it’s your job, are you sure you know what you’re doing?
Cynthia Montgomery is director of research
would anyone miss you? This is the killer
at Harvard Business School. She ran their
question. Be honest with yourself; if your
Entrepreneur, Owner & Presidents programme for
customers could fairly easily replace you then
like a lot of things in life - what everybody thinks
five years. This is for leaders of small to medium
your strategy is not strong enough.
is the answer probably couldn’t be further from
size organisations to get better at running their
the truth. Want to get fit? Here’s a quick and
The thing that I love about strategy is that it’s
2. Why does your company exist? Following on from the above, you probably don’t matter
easy ten minute routine. Lose weight? Just eat
With all her experience she defines strategy
this superfood and watch the pounds drop off.
beautifully, “Strategy is about serving an unmet
know why your business exists. If you can’t
Want the killer business that will earn millions?
need. Doing something unique, or uniquely well,
articulate the specific needs your business
Of course that idea that your friend always talks
for a certain set of target consumers.”
fills and how it does it better than your
about after a few too many glasses at your dinner party is the winning strategy. The hospitality industry is a very good sector
Let’s break that down; we have to deeply understand the unmet needs of a certain set
to your clients because you don’t really
competitors, you’re driving your business blindfold at night with the lights off.
of target consumers. I see this as deciding the
3. Do you understand your context? There are
to use to illustrate my point because of how
game you’re going to play. It gives you all the
plenty of simple strategy tools like SWOT,
apparently simple it is. I’m currently involved as
information you need to then concentrate on
PEST and Porter’s Five Forces. Use them to
a minority co-owner in a restaurant launch. It’s
how well you play it. Unfortunately I find a lot of
understand how tough your chosen industry
my third, and the first two I worked on in my
leaders don’t even know what game they’re really
at this point in time is to make money in. If
twenties in London very quickly popped any
playing. They don’t focus on a niche or deeply
you’re going to beat yourself up for being a
myths for me about what it took to be successful.
understand needs and whether they are unmet
poor strategist, at least recognise how good
your industry needs you to be. Then you can
It’s not a killer idea; it’s a lot of things done exceptionally well. Create amazing food and
When you know what game you’re playing,
decide if you pack up and go home or carry
deliver it via a brilliant service. Do this in an
then you face the real challenge - “Doing
exceptional atmosphere and in a location that
something unique or uniquely well”. This is where
attracts a certain type of customer with unmet
leaders get lost because they tend to focus on
solve? You’ve probably spotted this is the
needs. This has to all be off the back of creating
the unique rather than the uniquely well. They
third time I’ve mentioned this. That’s how
strong supplier relationships and getting the
believe their strategy has to be the equivalent
important it is. It’s your anchor to making a
pricing just right. Only then can you achieve the
of the superfood or exercise hack that gives
difference that matters. Continually orientate
tight net target margins available in food-led
them their target weight and fitness. They fail to
your whole business to understand and
hospitality (think high single digits if everything
recognise that it’s a comprehensive, sustained and
answer this better than your competitors,
works out very well).
combined programme of diet and regular exercise
and you’ll sleep better at night.
4. What needs, wants or problems do you
About 50% of start-ups fail in the UK within
that delivers their target weight and fitness. Yes,
Make sure your business would leave a hole in
five years (FT.com 6.10.15, ‘Staying in business
some businesses are lucky enough to find and do
the world if it closed tomorrow. And don’t forget
proves greatest challenge’). UK restaurants fail at
something unique that serve the unmet needs of
this is your job, and yours alone. You are the Chief
a rate three times faster than other start-ups. So
a certain set of target consumers. But most don’t.
if hospitality is so simple and we can break down
So which are you? Recognising you have a
Si Conroy specialises in helping business owners set and achieve stretching goals: sales, profit & capital/ dividend value realisation. Trained at PwC and owner of www.ScarletMonday.com and www.ConstantMentor.com, Si practices what he preaches across a number of businesses in which he has invested. One recent is pascere.co.uk which is now open at 8 Duke Street, Brighton. · firstname.lastname@example.org · @siconroy
Travel - Quito
Shake hands in...
Ecuador’s capital has big plans for welcoming business travellers, without compromising on its close connection with the natural world. Rose Dykins reports
ooking down upon the crater of Pululahua volcano – a couple of irreverent, furry llamas chewing behind me – I’m struck by how green it is. Perhaps naively, I’d expected to see a scorched dent in the earth, a scar on this beautiful patch in the waist of the world. Instead, I’m looking down at lush, cultivated fields and clusters of trees, and the occasional low-rise cottage. Fog is creeping in over the impossibly steep volcano – so vertical to the eye, it seems flat against the sky behind it, like cardboard stage scenery. Puluahua is the only volcano crater in the world to be inhabited by a community. It’s a small community - currently around 40 people - and one that is completely self-sustained, thanks to the fertile land. “Everything grows here,” says Rosa Chipantasi, who is working to secure a sustainable future for Pululahua. “There are 150 varieties of orchids, all kinds of
corn, beans and citrus fruits.” Climate change has piled the pressure on over the years, meaning farmers have only a few months to sow and grow their produce before weather becomes too wet. The community is also affected by its members leaving the crater and settling 40km away in Quito, seeking the opportunities of city life. Because of this, Chipantasi is launching a series of initiatives to establish Pululahua as a tourist destination. Given its uniqueness, there is great potential for this. Her vision involves creating horseback riding and trekking tours of the crater, along with experiences that will engage visitors with the locals. She’s also set up a summer school for children to visit Pululahua, so they can develop a connection with this rather special place, and potentially consider returning there to contribute to its development when they are older.
Travel - Quito Pululahua Crater
Instead, the city opened a new international airport in 2014, 18km east of the city, and the first to be built on new, undeveloped land in Central and South America in the past decade, with one of the longest runways in Latin America. For travellers from London Heathrow, Avianca connects to the Ecuadorian capital via Bogota, while American Airlines connects via Miami, with a journey time of around 17 hours including stopovers. What’s more, on the site of the old airport, construction began earlier this year on a new convention centre as part of a new development, Bicentennial Park. When it is complete in 2018, it will offer 28,000 sqm of meeting and event space. There has also been US$87 million invested in Quito’s hotel industry over the past few years, and a number of international hotel groups are opening up properties in the city, including Wyndham, Accor Hotels, Hilton and International Hotels Group.
View from Virgen de Quito
Quito’s strengths as a destination for business travel are its immaculately preserved colonial buildings, which set the scene for unforgettable group dinners and events, as well as its landscape and position at 0 Degrees Latitude. There’s the opportunity for group incentives at Museo Intinan (museointinan.com.ec) – an open air museum where the line of the equator is located, and the magnetic pull of the earth means it’s possible to balance eggs so that they stand upright. And, at Hotel-Restaurant El Crater (elcrater.com), delegates can tuck into Ecuadorian fare while soaking up views of Pululahua crater and the serene green Andes Mountains in its midst.
All in all, Pululahua’s sustainable approach to development mirrors the capital as a whole. “Quito is a medium-sized city, it’s growing very fast, and it has a lot of challenges for the future,” says Norma Bock, head of Quito Turismo. “It was the first city to be named a UNESCO world heritage site, so there’s a challenge to preserve our heritage and at the same time guarantee that each citizen can benefit from the city.” In 2016, Quito was chosen as the host city for Habitat III UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development. More than 12,000 people from more than 125 United Nations countries travelled to Quito to showcase their latest research and inventions relating to energy savings and clean water systems. And the UN chose Quito for a reason - because it serves as a blueprint for cities at the cusp of making important decisions about how to grow on the international stage, without harming the environment, the culture and the people who live there. “Latin America has the fastest-growing cities in the world,” says Bock. “The region is full of both extreme poverty and wealth. Those kind of extremes create a challenge. In Europe or the US, most cities have long term plans for future development, but this is largely not the case in South America. “When economies are emerging, development happens faster. The growing middle class in Latin America requires basic services, so the city has to provide them. At the same time, those services have to be sustainable. You have to ask where the energy to power those services is going to come from. Not all developed countries set good examples. In Latin America, we are in a state of transition, and we have the chance to do the right thing, because we have information and can learn from others’ mistakes.” So, with sustainability in mind, Quito has been heavily investing in infrastructure. In 2013, Quito’s old Mariscal Sucre airport was closed – you may have heard stories about hair-raising landings, thanks to the runway’s steep angle of approach, and the close proximity of people’s homes either side.
Horse riding around Cotopaxi
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Travel - Quito
ECUADORIAN ESCAPES Whether you want to reward employees, or explore Ecuador for yourself after the hard work is done, here are some unmissable back-to-nature experiences within easy reach of Quito.
A three-hour drive from Quito, the lush valley town of Banos is a must for thrill seekers and nature lovers. It’s home to Casa Del Arbo, a swing suspended from a treehouse that sends you soaring into what feels like infinity, with volcanoes and valley views at your feet. Banos is also home to awe-inspiring ziplines over rainforest canyons and rushing rivers, and adrenalin junkies should try their hand at canyoning down the waterfalls of Rio Blanco with MTS Adventure (mtsadventure.com).
➠ HACIENDA EL PORVENIR Situated two hours from Quito, this high-end yet rustic, pink, thatchroofed lodge is set at 3,600 metres above sea level, with the snowy peak of Cotopaxi – one of the world’s highest volcanoes – in its midst. Able to accommodate 50 people, its sitting room has a constant roaring fire, while its authentic rooms feature wood fire burners, and hot water bottles are tucked away in the impossibly comfortable beds. An afternoon horseback trek around the rippling grasslands surrounding Cotopaxi is an unforgettable experience – kitted out in a poncho and chaps coated in llama fur to shield you from the fresh wind. Mountain biking and waterfall hikes are among the activities, and the property recently gained a pine-wood spa, complete with a sauna heated by volcanic rocks. Destination management company Tierra Del Volcan (tierradelvolcan.com) can arrange your stay and activities, as well as an “Innovation Quest” package that involves re-connecting with nature and yourself; it can also be tailored for groups of co-workers to contemplate their personal growth.
Travel - Quito
WHERE TO MEET HILTON COLON QUITO HOTEL With 2,600 sqm of event space – including a ballroom that can hold 800 people – this well-presented downtown property lies opposite Parque El Ejido, where a vast artisan market takes place. It has four restaurants, including a sushi bar, as well as an outdoor pool and a bonsai garden. hilton.com
Set across from Olimpico Atahualpa stadium in one of Quito’s commercial districts, this practical hotel has two bedroom apartments with kitchenettes, as well as regular hotel rooms. There are two international restaurants, a 24-hour business centre, a club lounge and eight meeting spaces. starwoodhotels.com
Situated uphill from the centre of Quito – a twenty-minute drive from Independence Square – this unpretentious property has meeting space and comfortable beds (though some rooms could do with an upgrade). The seventh-floor Techo del Mundo restaurant offers 360-degree views of the Andean foothills, and offers live music in the evenings. hotelquito.com
SAN AGUSTIN MONASTERY
It’s possible to host events in this 16th-century monastery in the heart of Quito’s colonial centre, with a peaceful courtyard lined by columned arches, and a patio for dining. Spaces for hire include the refectory where the monks used to dine, and the Chapter Room, where Ecuador’s Declaration of Independence was signed – the latter has lashing of gold leaf and (slightly gruesome) oil paintings depicting the fate of saints.
SAN FRANCISCO CONVENT
The largest colonial building in South America, this beautiful structure has an ornate chapel, a large courtyard and a dining hall with a booth for opera singers to perform from.
SURREY CHAMBERS OF COM MERCE The Official Surrey Chambers of Comme M rce A G AMagazine
SURREY DIGITAL AWARDS
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The Largest Circulation Regional Business Publication in the UK.
ISSUE 38. 2017
PLATINUM A formidable French foe?
HONG KONG The City of Life
PLANNING BUSINESS SUCCESSION THE SEARCH FOR SURREY’S SUPER GROWERS
GENEVA MOTOR SHOW HIGHLIGHTS
HOW WE LEAD IN TECH INDUSTRIES
MERCEDES-BENZ S-CLASS COUPE
A ROUND AT MANNINGS HEATH GOLF CLUB & WINE ESTATE
The world’s best-selling luxury car
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ON A HIGH G
Record year of investment takes Gatwick Airport past its 45 million passengers milestone.
atwick Airport recently published its results for the year ended 31st March 2017 as the airport smashed through the 45 million annual passengers milestone in June. Gatwick has also just completed the biggest year of investment in the airport’s history, as it continues to deliver on its ambitious plans for growth. The airport’s annual results are the latest demonstration of Gatwick’s impressive growth record with 44.1 million passengers passing through the airport in 2016/17 - an increase of 3.2 million passengers (7.7%). This growth has been matched by record levels of service for the airport’s passengers, with customer satisfaction and advocacy at an all-time high. Long-haul continues to be a success story, with routes growing by 13.6% and now represents one in five of Gatwick’s passengers. As capacity issues become a challenge, the airport will continue to see considerable growth in passenger numbers as airlines swap
short-haul for long-haul services. Norwegian’s new route to Buenos Aires using a B787 Dreamliner, for instance, will replace a shorthaul European service in Gatwick’s schedule. Further growth across a broad range of travel markets with long-haul traffic, European business routes and destinations, have all combined to fuel a record-breaking year and provided a boost for local and national business. Gatwick is due to welcome the world’s longest low-cost long-haul route - to Singapore - this September. North Atlantic routes were up by 38.7%, with the two new routes launched by Norwegian in the year - Las Vegas and Oakland, and San Francisco - contributing to this growth. Norwegian is set to further increase its US routes from Gatwick, with Denver and Seattle starting this September, and a further direct route to Buenos Aires starting in February 2018. Meanwhile, China Airlines will be adding to Gatwick’s Asia routes by starting a new service to Taipei in December
2017, bringing Gatwick’s total long-haul routes to 60. Several airlines have also increased frequencies on routes and introduced new destinations with Cathay Pacific, increasing to daily, the frequency of their Hong Kong service, and Rwandair providing a new service to Kigali. Average seats per air traffic movement increased by four seats per movement, reflecting the airport’s increased long-haul flights. Meanwhile, air traffic movements increased by 4.9% to 280,000 ATMs annually, with the airport serving more than 177,000 passengers in its busiest day. Gatwick’s vital role within the UK economy was demonstrated by growth on domestic routes of +10.3%, as passengers took advantage of the regional services available from the London airport, best connected to the rest of the UK.
MANNINGS HEATH – with added sunshine We sent David Sheppard, the Chairman of Sussex Chamber of Commerce, to try out Mannings Heath Golf Course on a cold autumn day in November, which he thoroughly enjoyed in spite of the chill. We thought it was only fair to let him enjoy a round in the sun…
n the 2nd - 4th August this year players on the PGA EuroPro tour will compete at Mannings Heath Golf Club and Wine Estate, one of 15 main events being held at some of the UK and Ireland’s premier golfing venues. There will even be a two-hour highlights package from the event broadcast on Sky Sports, and on 98 networks around the
our round on the Waterfall course on the hottest afternoon of the year so far, the EuroPro tour seemed light years away. One by one weary golfers were struggling up the path to the clubhouse from the 18th green with tales of derring-do, exhaustion and rescue with one thought in mind, the bar. It could have been a scene from the film Ice Cold in
This was all a far cry from my previous outing to this course for the Platinum magazine last November. The dark clouds, soggy ground underfoot, leafless trees and whistling ice cold wind, made for treacherous golfing and as I reported at the time, made a long and tiring outing which we failed to complete as the night drew in early and
world reaching 400 million homes, launching this sleepy Horsham club into the national spotlight.
Alex with John Mills and Sylvia Sims finally savouring that perfect ice cold beer after weeks in the desert. Most disconcerting was that there weren’t any more golfers teeing off, only us, and maybe, just maybe, the members knew something about the course on a 30 degree, clear sky, afternoon that we didn’t.
firework night celebrations beckoned.
As my golfing partners (Lesley, Julie and Mark) and I sat in the outside area of the spike bar having a delicious lunch, contemplating
Anyhow, stacked up with plenty of water, sunscreen and two buggies, we set off. Thank goodness we had the buggies or else we may well have joined the long line of the earlier walking wounded.
Golf Our four handicaps are in the 20s-ish so this course was clearly going to be a tough golfing test. As it was, the course is beautifully laid out and kept, with trees, parkland, water hazards and lots of creeks and valleys to negotiate. However, whilst for the better golfer there were testing short cuts and long drive challenges, in most cases there was a safer, easier option for the less confident. It was clear to see why the course had been chosen for the EuroPro tour. If you are a regular golfer you’d be thinking about such a round of golf taking around four hours. Well we took six and not because we were losing many balls in the rough or the water or because there were other golfers on the course holding us up. It is still a long and arduous course with sometimes quite long distances between the greens and the next tee. I did love the chap who kept whizzing round us in his supercharged buggy to make sure we were ok in the heat and topping up our water supplies. We found out that this was because the “half way house” on the 11th was being rebuilt so the natural stop for refreshments wasn’t available. As before, I particularly liked the 11th “valley” hole which (apparently) Gary Player ranked in his book as one of his top 18 holes in the world. But overall it was the variety of holes, nestled in beautifully landscaped Sussex countryside, that remains my enduring memory of the course. This club is not a cheap option with new seven and five day members having to lay out (including the £750 joining fee) well over two grand before the first ball is hit. Perhaps however, one does have to pay for “luxury” and “exclusivity” and we all agreed this was definitely a place you would want to bring clients in order to impress them. We also felt that it was not just the golf course but the quality and ambiance of the whole facility that would particularly appeal to corporate hospitality. There is a more affordable and accessible option which is the 9 hole Kingfisher pay as you play course costing £12.50 to £24 for eighteen holes depending on time of day, day of the week and time of the year. There is also an Academy membership option which operates on the Kingfisher course. I must mention the grand plans for the Wine Estate part of this facility as it is much in evidence from the wine events and promotions in the clubhouse and the website. Supplementing the owners existing wineries in South Africa, Mannings Heath has unique terroirs, and with the planting of 30 acres of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier on the protected south facing slopes, it is being developed fast. The estate was lucky to miss the impact of this year’s late April frost as the first vines had only just been planted and still had their natural coating to protect them. The Estate is therefore still on track to produce its first vintage of Estate English Sparkling wine in 2023. Anyway, we made it around all eighteen holes and although completely exhausted, thoroughly enjoyed the day. The pink faced Georgian facade of the clubhouse could not have looked more welcoming and rather matched our own from the sun. And in the end, the cold beers in the bar were, I would guess, as equally satisfying as those consumed in 1940s Alexandria.
LAUNCH OF THE 2017 SUSSEX BUSINESS AWARDS
ast year’s winners and this year’s sponsors gathered at The Coal Shed in Brighton to celebrate the launch of the twenty ninth Sussex Business Awards.
entrants had been up by 30%.
There are seventeen trophies to be won this year including the prestigious Sussex Company of the Year, Best International Company and the Best Customer Service.
Mike Herd, executive director of Sussex Innovation Centre and Chair of the Judges for the fourth year said: “In an era of economic uncertainty, as we all await the impact of Brexit, it is more important than ever to cherish the home-grown businesses which provide local stability and prosperity.
Awards Organiser Caraline Brown, thanked the sponsors for their on-going support and welcomed new participants Legal and General, HARE and The Goodall Foundation to the 2017 scheme.
“In fact the good news is businesses in Sussex are not just contributing to the regional economy - many are also making an impact on the international stage and leading the way for the UK, too.
Legal and General were the winner of last year’s Healthiest Workplace and will be sponsoring the category this year. Whilst HARE will sponsor the Sussex Businessperson of the Year and The Goodall Foundation sponsoring The Responsible Business Award. She praised last year’s winners and said how tough the competition had been as
“Let’s make 2017 one to remember.” Sussex companies have until 30th August at 5pm to prepare their submissions. To view this year’s categories and download an entry form, head online to www.sbawards.org.uk. The winners of the 29th Sussex Business Awards will be announced at The Grand Brighton on Thursday 30th November.
THE ADUR & WORTHING BUSINESS AWARDS • Young Achiever • Customer Service • Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure • Innovation • Training & Development • Green Business • Retailer • Place to Eat and/or Drink • Building & Construction • Business in the Community
ominations are now open - If you would like to enter as a business or individual for entry into the awards then it couldn’t be easier. Visit www.awbawards.com to fill in a simple entry/nomination form. Once submitted,
the awards committee will get in touch with you. The more information you submit, the easier it will be for the judges to assess your submissions! All entries must be received by 5pm on 22nd September 2017. Before entering, please note these awards are only open to individuals, partnerships, organisations and businesses working or trading within the Adur & Worthing region.
You could be a winner at this year’s glittering award ceremony on 10th November at The Worthing Pavilion... all you have to do is enter! With eighteen categories, all designed to recognise successes and achievements across various industries, there’s an opportunity for everyone! Businesses are encouraged to enter up to three of the following categories:
AWARD CATEGORIES • Overall Business of the Year • Start-Up • Small Business (up to 9 employees) • Medium Business (10 to 49 employees) • Large Business (50+ employees) • Business Personality • Lifetime Achievement • Manufacturing & Engineering
SPONSORS: Electronic Temperature Instruments Ltd, Adur & Worthing Council, Adur & Worthing Business Partnership (AWBP), Allergy Therapeutics, Worthing Pier - Southern Pavilion, The Martlet Partnership, JSPC Computer Services, Carpenter Box, Lancing College Preparatory School at Worthing, Worthing & Adur Chamber of Commerce, Southern Water, Kreston Reeves, MET – Greater Brighton Metropolitan College, Sussex Transport, Worthing Town Centre Initiative, Bennett Griffin Solicitors & Notaries, Gardner Scardifield and Bowers & Wilkins
EXPERT EXPO Sonny Cutting gives us the lowdown on this year’s Mid Sussex Expo and its inspirational speakers.
hursday 7th September is a day to put in your diary for a golf themed business expo. The September event is lined up with the best players on the fairway. Get inspired by our opening keynote speaker, the wonderful Penina Shepherd - an award-winning entrepreneur, the author of the inspirational book The Freedom Revolution and founder of the innovative Law Firm, Acumen Business Law. During her opening speech, Penina will be sharing her groundbreaking approach to being a remarkable business person in a new and extraordinary business world. Feel the energy from Natalie Montagnani, a Marketing Consultant, Strategist, and Business Mentor for the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, who runs her own successful Marketing Agency, Page Marketing. Expect a practical yet fun talk on the importance of authenticity, your USP, why you need to be a rebel and how to stand out from the crowd. In this talk Natalie will help you to reflect on looking at yourself as a brand, and help you realise you can literally be, do or have anything you want by getting the right strategy in place. Natalie’s mission is to empower, inspire and motivate business owners and entrepreneurs to follow their passion, be positive, embrace change and be successful. Challenge your drive with Amanda Geel, a Business Advisor covering West Sussex in both coastal and rural areas. With such a wealth of business support experience behind her, having held various senior management and business advisory roles, Amanda is used to being asked ‘where is the money?’. Unfortunately, whilst she is yet to find a magical money tree or the chest full of treasure, Amanda has a knack for identifying the type of grants and finance available to start-ups, and small and medium sized enterprises which she will explain in her seminar on ‘Where to look, who to go to and what to consider’. Access to finance is understandably a hot topic for businesses needing to invest for growth, so make sure you don’t miss this one! Be infected by Neil’s passion and whose journey is one of lessons from the trenches.
Our speaker Neil Tomlinson is the marvellous founder of Aquapax - the original concept of having an unbottled water product - essentially water in paper cartons. Launching and driving a premium consumer brand across Europe and the Middle East has forced Neil to embrace the kind of chaos that only fellow entrepreneurs can truly understand. Neil’s talk will be of tales of his route from gamekeeper to poacher, sharing the reality of getting things done when there isn’t necessarily the budget or the staff resources to do it. With such an abundance of expert knowledge and positivity to be shared, it seems only fitting this expo is also dedicated to helping raise awareness for two local charities in the Mid Sussex region - Time 4 Children and The Disability Group.
Make sure you don’t find yourself in the rough, register today for the Mid Sussex Expo on the 7th September in Burgess Hill, West Sussex.
Web: www.netxp.co.uk Tel: 0800 2545 666.
Born in South London, Sonny Cutting was a Brighton local from the age of 16 and has lived in Hurstpierpoint for the past 17 years. Today in the sleepy little village of Hurstpierpoint, he lives with his wife, Andrea and their four-year old twins, Jack and Charlotte. Sonny is the managing director of Sussex Pages, The Business Marketing Network, a local digital marketing company which he set up after leaving BT as a new media specialist after eight years of service.
Do you run an amazing Business? Or do you know someone who does? If so, enter or nominate NOW! The Sussex Business Women Excellence Awards 2017 is preparing for a bigger and even more exciting event this year. We are already receiving many wonderful email entries and the hype on social media, and at business networking events is electric. Remember ladies, that receiving an accolade for your outstanding work achievements brings your successes to light, and builds a positive path for other women to follow. Women have made so much progress in business over the years, and these awards have been designed to highlight and recognise their exceptional skills and talents. The awards headline sponsor, ACUMEN BUSINESS LAW, is one of the ‘Top 50 Ground-breaking and Innovative Law Firms in the UK and Europe’ (Financial Times). Penina Shepherd, founder of the
company and multi award-winning entrepreneur, business lawyer and author of the inspirational bestseller book ‘The Freedom Revolution’, said: “It’s fantastic to see so many talented Sussex business women gaining the recognition they deserve. Celebrating the achievements of successful business women across the region is truly inspirational” The Sussex Business Women Excellence Awards will take place on the 24th November at the Hilton Brighton Metropole Hotel.
“I am often asked why should we enter awards and what are the benefits to me or my business. My reply is that winning a business or personal award will raise your profile, the profile of your company, enhance your reputation, instil trust to your customers and attract new business, which will ultimately make you more profitable. In short, it will prove you are better than your competitors.” Faiza Shafeek of Carrot Events, organisers of the awards
PLATINUM PUBLISHING MAGAZINE GROUP
Sponsors on board so far this year are:
Sponsorship opportunities are still avaiable, please contact Faiza Shafeek on 01323 461298 / 07540 406685 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
BUSINESS TALK Sussex economic growth, Brexit, Business, Education and Employment
ussex is as vibrant and dynamic as it is diverse, and it is Sussex’s economic growth and development which will be the main subject matter of the Sussex Economic Forum 2017 Conference. With a rapidly growing population, the county offers huge business opportunities in many fields such as construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail, and tourism to name a few. The county is also home to one of the busiest airports in the UK, that at present takes passengers to 220 destinations and smashes global record of 44 million passengers each year, resulting in it being one of the largest employers in the county. Employment has climbed ever higher and it is encouraging to see more people in work - employment and education will be two of the key subjects that the conference will cover. High Frequency Economics’ chief economist, Carl Weinberg recently said: “As the labour market strengthens, we get to a place where it is hard to find people to fill positions, and employers have to start raising wages to steal employees from other places. There may be disaffected workers who don’t feel that it’s okay to come back to work in this economy. This may all be true, but this is the same measure that we’ve seen going back for decades. Everything we know about this measure says that there comes a point that when businesses can’t find new employees to fill jobs, they have to start raising wages to steal them away from other employers. And when employees feel safe in their jobs, they feel comfortable asking for higher wages. And that’s the point that all of our experience tells us we’re at right now. There’s a supply of labour and a demand for labour”.
- all subjects that are fundamental to a sound and bright future. The conference will see any high-profile keynote speakers, economists, members of the cabinet, politicians, local government bodies, publicprivate partnerships, chambers of commerce, local and international businesses, universities, and a variety of other institutions in attendance. This two-day conference will open with a gala dinner on Thursday 16th November
2017 at the Hilton Brighton Metropole Hotel. The keynote speaker will be one of the UK’s top business magnates, investor and philanthropist. Also attending the dinner will be several cabinet politicians, local MP’s, heads of the local county councils, chambers of commerce and many top local businesses. November 17th will see the conference open officially, with up to 1250 delegates attending this major event.
The Sussex Economic Forum Conference will be a strategic platform to debate and discuss Sussex’s local economic growth. The four major debates will cover subjects at the heart of local economic growth including, Economic Growth and the effect of Brexit, Rail, Road, Sea and Air infrastructure, Digital Infrastructure, and Education and Employment
For more information about the conference, to book tickets or for sponsorship opportunities, please contact Faiza Shafeek on 01323 461298 / 07540 406685 or email email@example.com. Please visit www.sussexeconomicforum.co.uk
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THE GREAT DEBATE 2017
ore than 200 people packed the Sallis Benney Theatre in Brighton to participate in The Great Debate 2017. The audience, which represented some of our city’s biggest businesses, iconic tourist attractions and most successful SMEs, engaged in a thought-provoking debate, followed by a lively networking event where the discussions continued. The debate was chaired by former BBC presenter Miranda Birch, who worked for the BBC for 24 years and now runs her own business. She was joined by panellists Professor Debra Humphris, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Brighton, Giles Palmer, Founder and CEO of Brandwatch, Claire Hopkins, Founding Director at Ideal, and Andrew Goodall, Managing Director of Brunswick Developments and owner of Brighton Marina. The debate covered topics including:
generations of talent and to make sure that Brighton & Hove promotes what is on offer for businesses here. Professor Debra Humphris, Vice-Chancellor, University of Brighton, said, “The Great Debate was a wonderful opportunity for the university to forge deeper connections with our local business community. There was a real buzz throughout the debate which covered many topics and we are looking forward to ensuring that our communities work together to ensure Brighton is open for business.” If you would like to speak to the University of Brighton about ways the university community and your business can develop partnerships then contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to receive an audio recording of the full debate please contact email@example.com.
• Whether the city’s brand of fun serves its businesses well. • How the city can best serve its creative and freelance industries. • What developments are needed to ensure the growth of businesses can continue. • How can the university support businesses to recruit and retain the best talent? Miranda also asked members of the audience if they could sum up the city in one word, which prompted some very interesting responses. The Great Debate revealed how important it is for businesses, universities and schools to talk to one another, to engage with the next
ROLLING THUNDER Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupé - review by Maarten Hoffmann
am often asked what car l personally drive as it is presumed l trundle around in some supercar. Due to the fact that l drive like my trousers were on fire every day in testing a huge variety of cars, l choose a car that l can calmly waft around in for the 500 odd miles a year l actually travel in my own car. I drive a Mercedes-Benz S-Class. It certainly isn’t new but it is very low mileage, well maintained and wafts upon request. So when MB asked me to review the new S-Class coupe, l leapt at the chance.
take for granted in terms of safety systems, driveline technology and interior features. The S-Class is ranked as the world’s best-selling luxury sedan.
I have been delivered of the S500 with a 4.7-litre V8 that is totally effortless and has oodles of power to spare in any situation. And it sounds fantastic. Not the howl of a sports car but the low rumbling growl that reminds me of distant thunder - until you bury the go pedal into the Axminster as then the thunder instantly arrives inside the car and makes my hair stand on end.
The S-Class is ranked as the world’s bestselling luxury sedan.
The S stands for Sonderklasses, meaning special class, and has been the flagship model for the company since 1972 and has been in production ever since. They have used it to launch many innovations that today we
First off, the Coupe is gorgeous to look at. Not as big as l thought although still 5 metres long, with beautiful sweeping likes and a stance that says you are coming through - at speed and in style. There is no slow Coupe and it comes simply with the choice of three hugely powerful engines - 4.7 V8, 5.4 V8 and the very sexy 6-litre V12.
It has one of the best interiors around and there is nothing to pick at. There is enough technology in this car to not only fill 40 pages
but to power a small City. The computers are working all the time, stabilising, gauging, monitoring and calculating your every move and although not the best at evil little switch backs or tight country lanes, it has astonishing grip and doesn’t roll around the corners. It offers Magic Body Control suspension, which reads the road ahead far faster than l can and actively pulls the wheels up and down to absorb every bump and the Curve Tilting function will actually lean the car into corners like a motorbike. It will demolish long distances with such ease that you might be inclined to just turn round and go back again just for the hell of it. Sadly, we don’t really drive for pleasure anymore but this made me just go out and drive with nowhere to go. It’s that good.
There is enough technology in this car to not only fill 40 pages but to power a small City.
Motoring The floating dash is glorious with a huge TFT screen, delivering world-class multimedia and connectivity and it is so damned quiet that only when you power down a window and the world comes rushing in do you really understand what they have achieved. This is due to superior sound proofing and double glazing and is on a par with the RR Wraith l recently reviewed. I am never that keen on the rear seats of a coupe as ease of access is sacrificed for the exterior looks and here’s no exception. When you lean the front seat forward it moves of its own accord and back again into its starting position but you are standing like a lemon waiting for it and then again before the driver can climb aboard. There is not a coupe on the market any different so perhaps l should shut up and just drive.
I have been delivered of the S500 with a 4.7-litre V8 that is totally effortless and has oodles of power to spare in any situation
If getting picky, whilst smiling like a baboon, the indicator stalk is too close to the cruise control stalk, the handbrake is a faff working out which way it goes and the sheer
number of buttons and features can make your head spin. Do what l do. Find the sport button, find the suspension button, the air conditioning, the satnav and the radio. Sod the rest and let this computing powerhouse sort everything else out and just drive. Oh, but then there’s the optional night vision camera and the Magic Sky Control, which switches the panoramic roof from light to dark…….. I was pleased to see the 500 badge but not as ecstatic and l would of been seeing the top of the range S65 badge. That little monster will give you a V12 with 630bhp and 62 in 4.1 seconds although at £188,595, it bloody well should. And the noise……..
This has always been, and still is, the best selling luxury car in the world. Now send me the new cabriolet please Mr. Jackman………
TECH STUFF Model tested: S500 AMG Line Engine: 4.7-litre, V8, 9-speed auto Power: 455 bhp Performance: 4.6 secs to 62 mph Top speed:155 mph Economy: 32.5 mpg combined Price from: £100,985.00
THE CONTENDER Volvo V90 - review by Maarten Hoffmann
he slightly staid reputation of Volvo cars has been with us for years. It has always been a good car and one of the safest around but never really blew my skirt up - until now. I have banged on ad nauseam about the quality of German cars and, in all likelihood, will continue to do so as they are remarkable in their build quality, drive characteristics and residual value and they have had almost every sector to themselves - until now. This new estate is a very handsome car from just about every angle. The interior is striking in that they have not attempted to copy Stuttgart but have trodden their own path, and an excellent path it is too. Somehow, it is very Scandinavian although l am not sure what that means but it is. It is all well laid out, clean and simple and everything works as you would expect and without the BMW tendency to over-complicate everything to the point that you need a 2.1 degree to work it all out. The centre screen is as big as a tablet and easy to operate, the sound system can rattle the windows and everything is at your fingertips. The seats are excellent and Volvo are getting a reputation for such and as this is where your backside is placed for hours on end, they really should be good. I had the R-Design which offers great side bolsters to the seats and a firmer ride that some might not like but then there is the optional air suspension that retains the sportier drive but softens up the rear end. Then there is the boot that the marque is well-known for and here it does not disappoint. It is huge and although not the largest on
the market due to the sweeping roof line, it is more than enough for most. If you need more, get a van. There is a huge amount of passenger space with great rear legroom making this a tremendous long-distance tourer for all the family. The drive is excellent and with AWD as standard, it is a go anywhere machine and as l had the D5 engine, it gives plenty of poke across the range and, although l am a speed freak, l was happy through the week it was in my hands. Volvo have a system called Power Pulse that increases low range response and negates turbo lag by blowing compressed air from a cylinder into the turbo. It works well and l didnâ€™t notice any lag and the pick up is excellent. Since the Chinese assumed control of the company via Geely, a vast multinational conglomerate, they have poured billions into R&D and it shows in the quality of the cars and their sales. In the UK alone, Volvo sold 50,000 cars in 2016 and over half million around the world. The are various model options such as the entry Momentum, R-Design, Inscription and the rugged Cross Country. The Momentum starts at only ÂŁ35,865.00 which is a lot of bang for the buck up to the Cross Country Pro at ÂŁ50,555.00. My R-Design came with a 2.0-litre engine pumping out 190 bhp and although the 8.2 second 0-60 does not sound overly impressive, you have to consider that you are hauling around a small house and, in that regard, it is corking. Achtung, Achtung - the Swedes are coming - well, the Chinese actually but you get the point.
TECH STUFF Model tested: V90 D4 R-Design Engine: 2.0-litre 8-speed Power: 190 bhp Performance: 0-60mph 8.2 seconds Top speed: 140 mph Economy: 62.8 mpg combined Price from: ÂŁ35,865.00 As tested: ÂŁ44,465.00
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THE PLATINUM BUSINESS CLUB BRIGHTON
he Platinum Club met again this month for a packed event comprising a wide range of companies from across the region. The Platinum Club is the foremost networking group in Sussex, now in its 8th year, and there are a limited number of new memberships available for this highly effective and highly enjoyable monthly event at the Grand Hotel, Brighton.
To apply, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07966 244046.
1. Andy Crumpton (EMC), Chris Mansfield (Davenport Investments), James Jones (Focus Group), Phil Vallon (DMH Stallard) 2. Caraline Brown (Midnight), Maarten Hoffmann (Platinum), Barry Ashdown (Ashdown Broadcasting), Lynne East (Lynne East PR) 3. Daisy Fitzsimmons (Pier Recruitment), Gemma King (Vivid Marketing), Jarred Eccles (The Grand Hotel), Kirsty Wilson (Pier Recruitment) 4. David Sheppard (Sussex Chamber of Commerce), Faiza Shafeek (Carrot Events), John Burroughes (Uniglobe Travel) 5. Hannah Grice (Skerritts Wealth Management), Nick Poyner (Rubix VT), Julie Beard (West Sussex Print), Alistair Rustemeyer (Rix & Kay) 6. Keith Jackman (MercedesBenz), Jayna Shah (JPS Wealth Management) 7. Kerry Kyriacou (MD Hub), Tim Sadka (Rawlison Butler), Christian Heeger (Grant Thornton), Marcus Campbell (Real DNA) 8. Phil Murphy (Priavo Security), Jeremy Woolwich (Independent Perspective)
Table Talk Amanda Menahem’s
And so to food featuring guest writer Nick Mosley
Cap Maison, St. Lucia
As we know, Sussex food and drink offers some of the best in the country. The diversity and quality are becoming known far and wide. The Brighton & Hove Food Festival plays a key role in promoting our finest, both here and abroad, with such initiatives as the now famous international Chef Exchange. If you haven’t heard of chef Michael Bremner and his famous Brighton restaurant 64 Degrees, where have you been? Nick Mosley, Festival Director, shares his recent gastronomic adventures with Michael in St Lucia…
’m sat looking out over the Caribbean sea, shooting the breeze with possibly Brighton’s most well-known chef, Michael Bremner, and our host chef Craig Jones. We’re sat in The Cliff restaurant at Cap Maison in St Lucia,
the sun is just going down over the distant island of Martinique. It’s definitely work, but we all agree it’s not a bad gig. Michael has joined me for another food festival International Chef Exchange, and will be cooking a six course menu featuring some of his restaurant’s classic dishes on Saturday night. He’s partnering with Cap Maison’s executive chef Craig Jones, who’ll be joining us in Brighton in August for a reciprocal dinner. It’s a busy time for Michael, what with his appearance on BBC Two’s Great British Menu. He reveals to me that he knows he’s won the main round with his ‘The Grass is Greener’ dish, but mums the word for the moment. He’s moving house and opening a new venue on Brighton beach. I wonder how he’s managed to squeeze this in to promote our food and drink scene.
Smoked beef short rib with carrot and parsley
Table Talk “I don’t think you’d even finished the sentence before I said yes,” he laughs. “Participating in such events are no-brainers. I get the ability to experience other food cultures, learn new techniques and share experiences with other chefs. It’s always interesting to escape the day-to-day of my kitchen and look with fresh eyes at food and drink.” He’s no stranger to festival exchanges, having participated for the last two years in Guernsey and the Hague. So what challenges has he faced in the Caribbean compared to working in partner kitchens in Europe? “First, the heat. Kitchens are hot places but even hotter when it’s over 30 degrees outside! My other challenge was using gas as I’ve been working on induction for so long”. Our host chef Craig was acclaimed as ‘Caribbean Hotel Chef of the Year’ at the prestigious Caribbean Travel Awards earlier this year. Originally from Wales, Craig landed in St Lucia eight years ago. He loves everything about life in St Lucia, and from our few days in this tropical paradise, it’s easy to see why. I asked him of his experience of the exchange and his forthcoming visit to Brighton. “I love the experience of working with great chefs such as Michael - he has a fantastic energy and passion for his craft,” says Craig. “I’m looking forward to the challenge of working in a completely foreign kitchen, using unfamiliar ingredients. But most of all, I’m looking forward to showcasing my modern interpretation of French Caribbean cuisine to a different audience”. I wonder what Michael’s thoughts are about Craig’s food. “I’ve really enjoyed Craig’s dishes and the whole experience of the resort - you can’t fail to be relaxed here and the staff are so friendly. The menu at The Cliff is really interesting, and overflowing with fresh local seafood. The salt fish Russian salad was really special, and I particularly liked the creole seafood broth I had for lunch today”.
Chefs Michael Bremner of 64 Degrees and Craig Jones of Cap Maison A key part of the chef exchange is championing local producers, so Michael and I brought over the awardwinning Ridgeview English sparkling wine and Blackdown Distillery Sussex dry gin. “Here at Cap Maison we have our own rum,” says Craig. “We’re really proud of our punch recipe, and guests have all the ingredients to make it in their own room. Our deputy manager is also dabbling with small-batch gin production, so I’m excited to sample that soon”.
Dorada with almond and burnt butter crumb
I ask Craig what guests can expect at his joint dinner with Michael at Hotel du Vin in Brighton on Thursday 24th August. “Pleasure, passion and perfection. Tropical flavours with a Cap Maison twist”.
For more information about Cap Maison resort in St Lucia, including their culinary offering, visit www.capmaison.com.
Chef Craig Jones of Cap Maison will be hosting ‘A Taste of St Lucia’ dinner with Michael in the Dome Room at Hotel du Vin, Brighton, on Thursday 24th August. Sponsored by Vranken Pommery, the event is part of the Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival’s late summer programme, more information and advance tickets can be found at www.brightonfoodfestival.com.
THE SUSSEX CONNECTION The creators of Cap Maison Hotel are the Gobat family, with son Adam Gobat taking a lead role. This British family’s connection to St Lucia started when father Theo moved to St Lucia as finance director of a hotel and travel company. Having run many of the hotels on the island, he decided with the rest of the family, to create their own on a stunning cliff top on land that was part of their own estate. Adam’s move into hospitality came after working as a solicitor in the UK and overseas. He is in fact a former Sussex resident, having lived in Brighton for two years. He now divides his time between London and St Lucia. From its gourmet French West-Indian inspired menu at its restaurant The Cliff at Cap, to its delicious, relaxed counterpart on the beach, The Naked Fisherman, the resort has long been known for the exquisite dining experiences it offers guests. The family felt that with its access to fresh, flavour-filled colourful local dishes, and inspired by this volcanic island’s soil and surroundings, the St Lucian (and indeed Caribbean) food scene was hugely underrated in a global sense.
Table Talk REVIEW
Pascere (Latin; verb - to nourish) By Maarten Hoffmann
Chicken Breast and Leg
manda, our intrepid food reviewer, has been banned. Not permanently of course but this month we feature one of the most talked about and anticipated restaurant openings of the year and as Amanda is the proprietor, she has been banned from reviewing it. Amanda has held the dream of owning her own restaurant for many years and as she has reviewed just about every decent establishment in the area over the years, there is no one better to open a restaurant and correct all those things that drive her nuts. I have made a pact with myself that l will be 100% unbiased and will review Pascere as any other new restaurant. The location in Duke Street is right in the
heart of Brighton and a great job has been done with the decor. It is full of muted tones with exposed flint walls, beautiful lamps and, upstairs, there is a kitchen bar where one can watch the chefs at work. My favourite table has already been identified and is a lovely table in the window on the ground floor where you can watch the world go by and to be part of that world, there is a lovely al fresco terrace. The cuisine would be called contemporary British l feel and, as anyone who reads her column on regular basis will know, Amanda has a great love of fine wines and she has certainly gone to town on the wine list with a superb range of wines of all hue and, a first, a tremendous range of sparkling wines and
Prosecco by the glass. I went for lunch so had no chance to sample but l really donâ€™t need to as l know her taste and know the list is superb. Oh, and l will be back for dinner just to double check! There is a good range of small plates, English Tapas if you will, and therefore one can select a range of these or use them as a starter. I like this approach as it means you can go for a drink and a nibble or a full meal and that option really gives diners flexibility. I started with English Pea Custard with raw garden peas and lavender brioche which, despite it sounding like something l would never go near, was startlingly good. Itâ€™s something like a pea foam and is divine and l think people are getting sick of me talking about it. My
My favourite table has already been identified and is a lovely table in the window on the ground floor where you can watch the world go by
daughter has noted that if l talk about it again she is leaving home! I added another small plate in the shape of chicken croquettes with roast chicken skin mayo and chicken skin powder. This dish of three croquette balls was full of moist, well seasoned chicken covered in an incredibly light breadcrumb shell and all l can say is that l wanted more. I was dining with Sarah Springford, the head of the Brighton Chamber, and she went for roast cauliflower croquettes with truffle puree and aged Parmesan and assured me they were excellent (she had to assure me as l will not go near cauliflower) and following on from my shouting about the Pea Custard, she had that to follow and could not disagree with me on any level. On the side we had some pumpkin crackers with pumpkin remoulade, pumpkin puree and roasted cashew nuts and what a great little side it is and is a perfect companion snack for an excellent glass of wine over great conversation with friends. So much so that l am going to attempt to cook them myself and, apparently, the fire brigade are already on standby.
For a main course l chose chicken. This always worries me as, unless cooked to perfection and with a sauce, it can be dry and a tad dull therefore what a perfect testing dish for the Pascere chef, Johnny Stanford. I loved the presentation. A pyramid of skin-on chicken breast leaning over baby carrots, pressed potatoes, a compact square of chicken leg meat and hay mayonnaise. If presentation is everything, then this dish was everything and l hadn’t even tasted it yet. Moist, rich and beautifully cooked l think it would be fair to say that it is one of the best chicken dishes l have ever tasted. The baby carrots were not so baby but long and slender and bursting with flavour and the pressed potato was leaf thin layers with a browned top that went oh so well with the dish. Now l can hear Amanda laughing as she reads this as l am a vocal critic of slabs of square ‘dauphinoise’ potatoes as served in many a hotel banqueting dish, demonstrating that they cooked it by the hundred weight and just carved out a slab of often dry tasteless mush with no concern for presentation. This was a hand carved oblong of pressed potato layers that was sliced beautifully fine and has now ruined me further for slabs of mediocre hotel mush. For pudding, l had buttermilk sponge with malted ice cream and honeycomb which for me, was a little unexciting but then l didn’t eat it in its entirety as designed as one of my daughters arrived and, whilst l was was chatting, stole every last piece of honeycomb off my plate.
English Pea Custard
All in all, Amanda has done an astounding job of superb, calming decor, wonderfully inventive cuisine, a friendly and welcoming atmosphere and efficient and polite waiting staff. Prices are sensible and all the dishes l consumed as listed came to £28.50 which is fabulous value for this standard of food. Bravo Amanda, you have a winner on your hands and l now have a new favourite hangout. Pascere 8 Duke Street Brighton BN1 2AH
Pumpkin Crackers T: 01273 917949 M: email@example.com W: www.pascere.co.uk
THE VIC TORIA TERR ACE BRUNCH
Served daily between 9am and 1pm
The Grand Brighton, 97-99 Kingâ€™s Road, Brighton, BN1 2FW 01273 224300 | firstname.lastname@example.org | www.grandbrighton.co.uk TheGrandHotelBrighton
How to design a Wine List By Amanda Menahem
egular readers know of my love of wine and how last year I completed my wine qualifications courtesy of Sussex Wine School. This is something I continue to pursue. After all you can never stop learning about wine. And while I said ‘never again’ on completing the most recent and toughest exam, The French Wine Scholar, this year I’ve signed up to start the Italian Wine Scholar. I know I’ll regret this as I recall the exam taking over my life last year…. But, like going to IKEA and giving birth (so I’m told), you forget how awful it is. And this time it has more of a purpose, of course. My restaurant Pascere opened on 3rd July. This has been the culmination of a long-held dream and years of planning (in my head). So, of course, I knew exactly how I wanted it to be from the lighting, furniture, glass wear and, of course, the wine list. But where to start on the wine list! I started by meeting with most of the wine suppliers in the region and got a real feel for how it all works. I selected a small group of suppliers to work with, based on how much they ‘got’ my vision, were aligned to my brand and crucially whether they could offer my list the required diversity of styles and price points. There were elements I was very clear about: I wanted the list to be divided into styles of wine such as ‘clean mineral elegant’ or ‘savoury, spice, earth’. I wanted a large selection by the glass. I think increasingly diners want to be able to try different wines throughout an evening, or drink something different to their dining partner, so they don’t always want to order a whole bottle. I wanted some organic/natural wines and I wanted a large selection of sparkling wines, a particular passion for me. I wanted good value for money for my customers and I wanted the list to appeal to wine lovers and novices alike. Personality was also important. My chosen suppliers are totally lovely people who I enjoy working with. They have been incredibly supportive, helping with equipment, staff training and generally being there to support. Invaluable in the midst of a chaotic restaurant launch! Working with the suppliers I enlisted the help of Jonny Gibson and some trusted wine buff friends, to form a tasting ‘panel’ which
also included my Head Chef. Together we assessed and scored every proposed wine for its quality and suitability for the list, taking into account our food menu. And after much spitting (and a bit of swallowing – oh, that sounds wrong!) discussion and refinement – voila, the list was done. And now that it’s in full swing, I’m really happy with it. It’s extensive yet accessible with the majority ranging from £20 - £40. 39 out of 57 wines are available by the glass or carafe. I admit I have indulged my passion for sparking wine with 8 available by the glass – the largest selection that I have found anywhere. Some of the more obvious wines are foregone in favour of more interesting alternatives enabling better value for customers. For instance, our Menetou- Salon wine comes from the region right next to Sancerre and is a great alternative at a much better price. I’ve already had a handful of customers rave about finding their favourite wine on my list and that’s really rewarding. After all I’m in this business to make people happy and create memories. Next month l will be profiling some of my favorites from the list.
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TEEING OFF AT OLD THORNS On Friday 2nd June, 11 teams made up of companies from across Sussex and South East Hampshire, teed off at Hampshire’s leading golf club, Old Thorns, in aid of Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice. The teams – consisting of existing and new charity supporters – played 18 holes of golf before enjoying a celebratory dinner in the Kenwood Suite, and a performance by British Classical Crossover Soprano, Keedie Green. The day, which raised over £4000, was sponsored by long-term supporters, construction company Willmott Dixon, who also had a team taking part in the event. Other teams included the Coppin family, LJW Enterprises and JMS Wealth Management. Attendees on the day included professional footballers, Paul Jones, Paul Walsh and Luther Blissett, and Big Brother 2016 winner, Jason Burrill. Collections throughout the day, plus a ‘Heads and Tails’ competition at dinner, an auction and a silent auction, all contributed to the fundraising total. Hugh Lowson, CEO of Chestnut Tree House spoke at dinner about the specialist care services provided by the charity, and thanked people for their support; whilst Nurse Louise Borton outlined the vital work carried out by the community care team, helping life-limited children and their families in their own homes. The next Golf Day will take place on Friday 29th September at East Sussex National Golf Course. For more information or to register a team, contact Terrina Barnes on 01903 871846 or email email@example.com.
GET INVOLVED IN THESE SEPTEMBER EVENTS LITTLEHAMPTON 10K Entries are open for the Chestnut Tree House Littlehampton 10k run, which takes place on Sunday 10th September. Now in its 14th year, the route takes in Littlehampton, Rustington and Mewsbrook Park, and will start and finish on the beach promenade. Nicky Ifould, Events and Campaigns Fundraiser at Chestnut Tree House said: “1,300 people registered to take part in last year’s Littlehampton 10k, and we’re hoping to attract even more for the 2017 event. The fast, flat route makes it suitable for both experienced and first-time runners – all we ask is that participants try to raise as much as possible, as every penny counts and helps us to continue to provide all the specialist care services to local life-limited children and their families.” Registration costs £18 and all participants receive a medal and a goody bag when they cross the finish line. For more details visit www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk/10k
REEBOK RAGNAR RELAY A new event for 2017, the Reebok Ragnar Relay is a US running phenomenon which has just arrived in the UK. Chestnut Tree House is seeking teams of 10 to sign up for the 170-mile coastal tag-team run, taking place during the day and night on 23th-24th September, between Maidstone and Brighton. The White Cliffs Ragnar Relay challenge is an ideal team-building experience, taking about 25 hours to complete, with each relay leg ranging between 3-11 miles and each team member running three times. 10 runners, two mini-buses, and one aim - to raise vital funds for Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice. There is no registration fee but teams need to raise a minimum of £1,000 sponsorship. Visit www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk/ragner for more details and to register a team.
If your company would like to get involved with supporting Chestnut Tree House, please contact the Corporate Fundraisers on firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk/corporate for more information.
HEAVEN IN HEVER by Amanda Harrington
rriving at Hever Hotel with the car roof down and the sun shining, we couldnâ€™t help but be impressed by our first glimpse of the hotel. Having passed the entrance to Hever Castle, we drove about a mile further into beautiful countryside and then, nestled in the trees, was the entrance to the hotel. Built c1904 as part of Lord Astorâ€™s Hever Castle Estate, the hotel was originally a dairy farm, together with its associated buildings. The reception area was actually the old Fire Station for the Hever Estate which stretched from the farm to the Castle. Apart from the main building, which accommodates the reception, bar and restaurant, all the accommodation is converted from singlestorey out-buildings set around small attractive courtyards, each having their own front door, making you feel like you have your own little cottage. The hotel sits right next door to the Hever Castle Golf Course and golfers can enjoy a round of golf (or two!) during their stay. There was a small group of golfers staying at the hotel when we were there.
Hotel Review The hotel has excellent facilities for businesses, being able to accommodate small and large groups. In fact, on the day we arrived, a large business group was getting ready to checkout after a week-long conference. Apparently, the delegates had travelled from all over Europe to attend and from their demeanor, they had a cracking time. Our room was an Executive Double situated in one of the central courtyards. The room was very spacious, with a seating area of two chairs and a coffee table, a large double bed, and a dressing/table/desk area housing the large, flat-screen television and the tea and coffee making facilities. On such a warm day, it was a treat to find a fan in the room and this helped me to cool down while I was freshening up to go and explore the hotel. We decided to have cocktails on the well-furnished patio area to the front of the hotel. There are plenty of large tables with umbrellas to shelter from the afternoon sun and we tucked ourselves into a corner to watch the world go by as my husband enjoyed a couple of spicy Bloody Mary’s and I had a Peach Bellini or two! The hotel has a very pleasant décor, in keeping with the age of the building, but with a contemporary twist. There is a pleasant bar area just off reception, with a large fireplace and Chesterfield sofas, plus other seating in front of the bar and in a small snug to the rear of the area. Upstairs from the main bar area is another bar area and a games room with a piano and pub games, which, with a few more of their excellent Bellinis, would have had me on the piano singing sea shanty’s. Although we didn’t explore this aspect of the hotel, apparently, they have a fitness club with saunas, gym, tennis court and table tennis tables. It was a little too hot to contemplate any of these and the Bellinis might have played their part! The restaurant area is large and airy, with large windows looking out over the patio to the front of the building. The menu was varied and we didn’t take long to decide – my husband plumped for the ‘bangers and mash’ which he said was delicious – local sausages in a rich onion gravy atop a pile of creamy mashed potato. I opted for the Porcini Ravioli in a rich, creamy tomato sauce – it was absolutely delicious and the balance of flavours was just right. We decided to end our meal by sharing a slice of cheesecake and a bottle of wine on the patio to enjoy the last of the day’s sunshine. After an excellent night’s sleep in the very comfortable bed, we enjoyed a delicious breakfast in the restaurant. The breakfast is self-service, but everything was laid out clearly and the cooked breakfast was hot, fresh and plentiful. The atmosphere in the hotel is relaxed and the staff couldn’t have been more helpful. Stuart, the duty manager was a real star, as was Tony who remained polite and helpful even when he was inundated by people at reception. All in all, our brief stay at the Hever Hotel was a delight. The situation is excellent, being close to Hever Castle and Chartwell House and yet it feels like a little oasis in the countryside. I would highly recommend a visit and my husband and I certainly intend to return one day.
Hever Road, Hever, Edenbridge, Kent TN8 7NP 01732 700700 email@example.com
BIG IS BEAUTIFUL FOR SUSSEX BUSINESS
ussex based print company, Beautiful, has seen itself successfully enter the high-end POS and display market to become the partner of choice for big brands and marketing agencies. A large technology investment in early 2017 saw the company acquire a state-of-theart large format printer along with a large format CNC cutter. As a result, Beautiful has been able to expand its services to offer a host of exciting new print and cutting finishes as well as short-lead time efficiencies for its clients. The new printer is currently only one of two in the UK and one of its claims to fame is its ability to print directly on to a variety of materials including foamex, acrylic and wood, creating a new seamless, high-end finish. The new technology is able print onto substrates up to 3.2m wide and 45mm thick, something aptly demonstrated by the recent creation of a number of branded solid oak worktops for a major global drinks brand.
Since the investment, the business has successfully secured new contracts for large scale ongoing projects including digital wallpaper printing, development hoarding and exhibition graphics. As a result, Beautiful now has many large retailers and marketing agencies on its books, contracts Director Michael Tyrell would like to win more of.
He said: “At Beautiful, we’ve always had a loyal client based both in Sussex and further afield, but our investment in technology has allowed us to offer competitive rates, a first-class service and quality products to larger clients based globally. We’ve found many large marketing and advertising agencies are contacting us for client work and in turn have been happy to refer us to their clients and peers without question.” Beautiful is also currently developing a new fully responsive e-commerce website. The site has been designed to make buying print simpler, more pleasurable and convenient, and will act as a shop window showcasing Beautiful’s comprehensive range of products and services. The company’s range includes everything from traditional print media to exhibition graphics, signage, branded clothing and vehicle graphics. The company also boast an in-house graphic design and web design service. The company’s proven success at working to short lead times, providing only the highest quality work, and ensuring clients are regularly updated has proved enticing for the country’s SME’s, and now Beautiful’s ethos that ‘the customer deserves better’ is grabbing the attention of the big brands and agencies. To discuss how Beautiful could help your business, please call 0844 264 1235.
Battle Chamber of Commerce www.battlechamber.org.uk
Bexhill Chamber of Commerce 01424 842892 www.bexhillchamber.co.uk
Crowborough Chamber of Commerce www.crowboroughchamber.co.uk
Eastbourne UnLtd Chamber of Commerce 01323 641144 www.eastbournechamber.co.uk
East Sussex County Council 01273 481570 www.eastsussex.gov.uk
Federation of Small Businesses 01424 754686 Reg Office: 01323 482018 www.fsb.org.uk/eastsussex
Hailsham Chamber of Commerce 01323 310531 www.hailshamchamberofcommerce.co.uk
Hastings Chamber of Commerce 01424 205500 www.hastingschamber.co.uk
Heathfield Chamber of Commerce 01435 865858 www.heathfieldchamber.co.uk
ANYONE FOR CRICKET?
s temperatures soared for the 215th first-class match between Sussex and Kent at Tunbridge Wells, Kent County Cricket Club’s Commercial Director, Emma Santer announced Parker Building Supplies has become official partners of the club as part of a three year deal. “Kent Cricket is very happy to be supported by Parker Building Supplies. They are a very well respected business in the South East and go from strength to strength,” Emma said. “It is always great for a club to have the support of local businesses, particularly when they have a shared desire to see the club succeed. We hope the partnership will continue for many years to come.” Parker Building Supplies’ Marketing and Communications Manager, Jamie Pierce, said: “We’re delighted to have become official partners of Kent Cricket. We’ve been working with the club over the last few years and feel it is the right time to take the next step in our partnership with the club.
The official magazine for the Alliance of Chambers in East Sussex
Issue 4. 2017
New MPs Stephen Lloyd & Lloyd Russell-Moyle on supporting local business
DO YOU OWN YOUR OWN NAME?
DOING BUSINESS IN DUBLIN
REVIEWED: AUDI R8 SPYDER Review GROUP
The Institute of Directors 0207 766 8866 www.iod.com
COODEN BEACH HOTEL HYDRO HOTEL
Lewes Chamber of Commerce 07919 382316 www.leweschamber.org.uk
Kent County Cricket Club CEO, Jamie Clifford, said: “With public funding scarce, it’s great that our commercial partners such as Parker Building Supplies can support us in keeping cricket at Tunbridge Wells. We thank Tunbridge Wells Cricket Club for their continued hospitality and hope the schedule allows us to bring more first class action to the town.” Parker Building Supplies is the leading independent and multiple national award-winning timber and heavyside builders’ merchant based in the South East, supplying both the retail and trade sectors. As a result of a strategic expansion and acquisition programme over the last few years, the company now employs more than 280 members of staff at 25 locations across the region.
For more information visit www.helpmebuildit.co.uk
We are very proud of our new magazines for ACES. The new magazine will be distributed all over East Sussex. Make sure you pick up your copy. For more information about advertising and editorial sponsorship, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07966 244046 and we have discounted members rates. The fourth issue is out now and in general distribution right around the region
Locate East Sussex 0844 415 9255 www.locateeastsussex.org.uk
Newhaven Chamber of Commerce 0800 107 0709 www.newhavenchamber.co.uk
Peacehaven Chamber of Commerce 01273 586222 www.peacehavenchamber.co.uk
Seaford Chamber of Commerce 0800 881 5331 www.seafordchamber.co.uk
South East Local Enterprise Partnership 01245 431469 www.southeastlep.com
Uckfield Chamber of Commerce 01825 722607 www.uckfieldchamber.co.uk
Wealden District Council 01323 443322 www.wealden.gov.uk
“We are all looking forward to working with the club and getting behind Matt, his staff and the players for a great season.”
BRIGHTON AND HOVE
CUE THE MUSIC Brighton Chamber’s AGM with a musical twist
righton Chamber’s AGM is always a bit different and this year’s was no exception. Assembled in the bright and beautiful Harbour Hotel, members and the Chamber team gathered on Monday 19th June to look back at the Chamber achievements of 2016, look ahead to 2017 and 2018, and vote on several appointments to the Board. All while enjoying some good food, great conversation and lively music (more on that later!) The night kicked off with our fabulous MC for the evening, Kathy Caton, co-founder of Brighton Gin, talking about how Brighton is a place where anything is possible, and that Brighton Chamber reflects this and encapsulates the energy and unique approach of the city. Chamber President, Julie Roff, from ABC Translations, presented the Chamber’s 2016 achievements - the Chamber ran over 100 events in 2016, with over 4300 attendees. From our Bite-sized Learning events to our ‘high-rise debate on high growth’ at the i360, we offered an impressive selection of networking and training events throughout the year. 250 new members joined the Chamber last year, and the team uploaded 300 members’ blogs to the Chamber’s website, showcasing the quality and breadth of business knowhow and talent on offer in Brighton. The Chamber continued to work in partnership with organisations across Brighton, including a collaboration with Brighton Digital Festival for the first time. The Chamber achieved all its objectives in 2016, including increasing
The Brighton Chamber of Commerce Board members. Photo: Light Trick Photography.
income from events and sponsorship, allowing the Chamber to continue to add and offer exceptional value to its members. To bring us into the future, Vice President, Kate Peach, presented the Chamber’s vision for 2017. The Chamber has an ambitious plan to grow membership to 750 members by 2018. New events are on the cards for the coming year, so watch this space for an event with the Department for Trade and Investment, and make sure you book a ticket to “Brighton Summit: Embracing the Unknown” on 13th October 2017. The accounts were approved, with thanks to Hilton, Sharp and Clarke for their accountancy services. The new Articles of Association, revised with the help of ASB Law, were voted on and incorporated. Julie Roff was elected as Chamber President, Franki Martelly, Kate Peach and Jill Woolf were elected as Vice-Presidents and Andy Winter, Martin Harris and Frances Duncan were re-elected as Board Members. After dinner we danced to music from Stick it On, where guests pick the tunes and DJ for 15 minutes. We danced like we were clubbing on Brighton seafront at 2am! It was a great night celebrating yet another successful year for Brighton Chamber. Stay tuned to see what we have in store for 2018.
To find out more about membership and how it could help your business, contact Amy on membership@ businessinbrighton.org.uk or call 01273 719097
PUMP IT UP
HMD Kontro Sealless Pumps collects prestigious industry award
MD Kontro Sealless Pumps, based in Hampden Park, Eastbourne, have won a prestigious accolade for innovation at the British Pump Industry Awards 2017. Defying stiff competition, VapourView®, the company’s revolutionary sealless pump condition monitoring instrument, won the coveted award for Technical Innovation of the Year (Product). Martin Stuart, Product Development Manager, was delighted to collect the award on behalf of HMD Kontro Sealless Pumps, and said: “Whilst our technical team foresaw that the development of VapourView® would broaden the scope of sealless pump technology, we did not envisage the honour of winning this internationally renowned award for innovation.
“Gaining such a prestigious accolade has confirmed VapourView® as a groundbreaking gas detection device. We look forward to introducing sealless magnetic drive pumps to new audiences who can now benefit from lower maintenance costs, enhanced health and environmental safety, leak-free operation and long life durability.” VapourView® was developed by HMD Kontro Sealless Pumps, part of the US-based Sundyne corporation, and launched with hazardous area certification in mid 2016. VapourView® provides vital information to the end-user on the presence of gas in a pump’s internal flow regime and forewarns of adverse conditions likely to affect its performance. This information permits remedial system changes to be made,
eliminating safety risk, maximising up-time and extending the life of capital equipment. Founded by the British Pump Manufacturers Association (BPMA) in 2000, the importance of the annual Pump Industry Awards programme has grown steadily to become the recognised platform for celebrating significant industry achievement. The 2017 award ceremony was hosted by TV presenter Anna Williamson and the Technical Innovation (Product) award was presented by Peter Ullman from sponsoring publication Process Industry Informer.
For further details about VapourView® and the HMD Kontro sealless pump range, please visit www.sundyne.com/hmdkontro.
The Pump Industry Awards ceremony was hosted by TV Presenter Anna Williamson (left). Martin Stuart, Product Development Manager (centre) collected the Technical Innovation of the Year (Product) Award on behalf of HMD Kontro Sealless Pump’s from Peter Ullman (right) from sponsoring publication Process Industry Informer.
PROTECT YOURSELF by Ana Christie Chief Executive, Sussex Chamber of Commerce
A CHAMBER NEWS
re you aware that the law is changing? With just over 10 months to go until the General Data Protection Regulation becomes law, the Sussex Chamber is urging businesses to start preparing to ensure they are compliant with the legislation when it comes into force. From 25th May 2018, all businesses that hold personal data will have to guarantee that their data procedures are fit for purpose and compliant with the new regulation. While the GDPR is an EU-initiative, the UK government has already made it clear that the legislation will still take effect in the UK after Brexit. Businesses that are found to be non-compliant, risk potential fines of up to €20 million or 4% of annual worldwide turnover. Chambers of Commerce around the country are urging their members to start taking the necessary preparations to ensure they are ready for the regulation. GDPR is intended to reflect modern working practices in the digital age, and will strengthen consumer trust and confidence in businesses. It will establish a single set of rules across Europe, which will make it
simpler and cheaper for UK companies to do business across the continent, even after we leave the EU. Steps for businesses to take include: • Document what personal data the company holds, where it came from and who it is shared with. Firms may want to consider organising an information audit or speaking to a data expert. • Review current privacy notices and plan for any necessary changes needed before the implementation deadline. • Check procedures to ensure they cover all the rights individuals have under the new rules, including how to delete personal data or provide data electronically if needed. • Review how the company seeks, obtains and records consent from individuals, and whether any changes are necessary. • Ensure the right procedures are in place to detect, report and investigate a personal data breach. • Determine whether a Data Protection Officer is required, and designate one
to take responsibility for data protection compliance and assess how the role will sit within the organisation. For more steps on preparing for the General Data Protection Regulation, businesses should revert to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) https:// ico.org.uk/for-organisations/dataprotection-reform/ The ICO has prepared a document with 12 steps that you can go through, alongside useful tips and advice on how to prepare your business. Businesses need to be proactive about ensuring they are ready for the new data protection regulations when they come into force and not leave preparations until the eleventh hour. Those firms that don’t fulfil the necessary responsibilities leave themselves vulnerable to tough penalties, not to mention public scrutiny. Why not join the Sussex Chamber as we will be holding an event on the 30th August “A practical approach to GDPR”.
Please call the office on 01444 259259 to book your place. GDPR will impact us all.
CHANGES AT CHICHESTER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE & INDUSTRY By Sue Garman
t is with great pleasure that I can now share the news that Julie Harrison and I have been appointed in a shared role, as CEOs of Chichester Chamber of Commerce and Industry. A lot of you will remember Julie, having worked with her in the past when she spent 11 years as a highly effective Business Development Manager at our Chamber, and will appreciate the wealth of experience she is bringing back with her. I have been acting as the part-time interim Business Development Director since December 2016, working closely with businesses to create ‘Business Needs Analyses and Solutions’, and I am thrilled that we are now back up to capacity as a team to take our Chamber forward with the continued support of our Administrator, Gayle Dixon. Our vision for the future is to grow and retain our membership by ensuring that we remain ‘The Voice’ of Chichester and the surrounding district’s businesses. With the two of us at the helm, we can offer account management to ensure effective communication and support.
We will continue to work with Coast to Capital’s Business Navigator Hub to refer you to a quality business support service for growing businesses; we know how invaluable this has been to those of you who have taken advantage of their expertise. We would like to grow and enhance the offer by our members to run training events for you. If you would like to offer a training session, then please do get in touch with us. We are also offering social events in the coming months, such as a ‘Supper Club’ in partnership with Chichester Business Improvement District (BID), and are looking to organise some new and exciting events where you can network informally with like-minded businesses. Our joint monthly Business Breakfast with Chichester College will continue, with networking, quality speakers, and a delicious full English breakfast prepared by the students. Our commitment to supporting local charities will also continue. A lot of you supported our recent Charity Quiz Night in aid of Fishbourne Roman Palace at the fabulous Chichester Park Hotel,
And don’t forget, our Chamber has a lot to offer you! You can host or sponsor events, promote your business, offer up a ‘Business Gem’ or ‘Minute to Win It’, speak at one of our events, or advertise in our bi-annual magazine and on our website. We would love to hear from you, and your views on how we can best support you!
JOIN CHICHESTER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY FROM JUST £99 Membership benefits include: • Events and networking • Policy and public affairs • Workshops and training • Business advice and services • New business opportunities Join us now at www.chichestercci.org.uk/join
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY • 2nd August - Speed Networking with our neighbours - in conjunction with Worthing & Adur, Brighton and Hove, Bognor Regis and Sussex Chambers of Commerce.
For more details visit www.chichestercci.org.uk
We will continue to run quality events alongside our members’ meetings, such as further ‘Behind the Scenes’ offers, as well as a plan to extend the opportunity for networking with other Chamber members including Hampshire, Bognor Regis, Worthing & Adur and Sussex Chambers.
hosted by Chris Coopey of MHA Carpenter Box - a wonderfully fun evening that raised nearly £1000.
DIVIDE AND CONQUER Chris Coopey, President of Worthing & Adur Chamber, on the continuing challenge that is the A27
buoyant and unemployment being better than the national average, it shouldn’t mask the fact that we can do much better.
The consequence of this massive under budgeting is that we will not get a scheme that will solve the problem, we’ll just get a scheme that tinkers at the margins
he A27 is one of the issues that has dogged the economic well-being of the area over several decades and, sadly, the solution seems as far away now as ever. Of course there are proposals afoot, and there is also alleged to be a pot of money. Unfortunately, as the experience over at Chichester shows (they have lost their A27 funding), the money is not guaranteed and more to the point, it’s nowhere near enough. Put very bluntly, I believe that the cost benefit model that central government has used to calculate what should be set aside for the scheme is massively flawed. I understand that the pot for the Worthing, Sompting and Lancing section of the road is around a maximum figure of £100 million, whereas figures that I have seen suggest that a bypass might cost in excess of £800 million and a tunnel over £1.4 billion – so the difference is immense. The consequence of this massive under budgeting is that we will not get a scheme that will solve the problem, we’ll just get a scheme that tinkers at the margins. In my view, central government has compounded the felony of under budgeting by hiding behind the mask of localism. Local people are being asked to make some highly contentious choices with regard to the nature of the scheme and thus the road layout they would like. The consequence of this type of ‘localism’ is that it understandably sets groups of people against each other and becomes
As we have seen in Chichester, the result for the Worthing scheme may be that government says ‘because you can’t agree amongst yourselves, the budget is withdrawn and the scheme is dead in the water’ - and it becomes our fault!
It cannot be overstated how much of an economic benefit would be brought to the whole of the coastal South East if we can persuade government to rethink this and provide a properly funded and long term solution to the A27, which by any objective measurement, must be one of the worst performing roads in the country. To continue to kick the can down, this shockingly congested road does a disservice both to the economic wellbeing of the local area as well as to the whole of the South East.
As the A27 is a major and strategic trunk road which, for a good part of its length, is the only major east west route across southern England below the M25, it is a national issue, and one that the government should be dealing with as a matter of priority.
Government, whatever its hue, needs to look to the long-term prosperity of the golden goose that is the South East economy and come up with a solution that addresses the problem of a major strategic English trunk route that is clearly not fit for purpose.
The Treasury, led by Highways England, should come up with a properly funded scheme for either a bypass or a tunnel. Worthing and Adur needs a properly planned and executed solution to a problem that has been a brake on the coastal West Sussex economy for decades.
That being said, there is now a short consultation being undertaken by Highways England as to what scheme(s) the Government might fund so as far as we possibly can, and to avoid the fate of the Chichester scheme, the businesses and residents of Worthing need to speak with one voice to get some marginal improvements in hand, whilst we continue to fight the longer battle.
destructive to decision-making because no consensus is ever likely to be reached. Simply put, it’s called divide and conquer.
Despite our local economy being pretty
WORTHING & ADUR
HAVE YOUR SAY
he A27 is one of the issues that has dogged the economic wellbeing of the area over several decades.
Highways England has announced a public consultation about the A27 Worthing and Lancing improvements scheme. We cannot allow what has happened in Chichester (they have lost their A27 funding due to no agreed route). It’s unfortunate the consultation period (19th July to 12th September 2017) falls over a time when it will be difficult to collate the views of the business community, and may lead to a diluted response for something that is of such commercial importance to our area. The information below has been received from Highways England and we urge you to take this opportunity to make your views known. In line with the Government’s 2015 Road Investment Strategy, Highways England has committed to improve the A27 between Worthing and Lancing. The scheme aims to improve traffic flow, journey times, safety and accessibility, boost local economic growth and minimise the impact on the environment. All responses to the public consultation will be considered by our project team. The closing date for responses is 11.59pm on 12th September 2017. A report on the public consultation will be produced later this year.
PUBLIC CONSULTATION EVENTS
Members of Highways England project team will be available at the public consultation events to discuss any queries that you may have. During the consultation information about the proposals, the online questionnaire and supporting information will be available at www.highways.gov.uk/a27Worthing-and-Lancing
For general queries email: A27WorthingandLancingImprovements@ highwaysengland.co.uk
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BEYOND PARODY by Maarten Hoffmann
he European Union is a joke beyond parody and leaving this booze sodden bunch of failed tinpot dictators will, in all likelihood, be the finest hour for the United Kingdom. Take the migrant issue as one small example. They are coming over by the boatload and once on the high seas, they are ushered into our care, taken to shore and then become citizens of Europe with no further paperwork required. It is estimated that there will be 1 million a year coming over soon and it will not stop until the third world countries of North Africa are totally empty. Italy is currently being invaded by up to 2,000 per week and that chief booze sodden idiot, Jean-Claude Juncker praised the people of Italy over the crisis, promising solidarity and declaring, with a hypocrisy spectacular even by his own low standards, ‘Viva l’Italia’. Due to an accident of geography, Italy is bearing the brunt of the invasion that the EU have failed to get a grasp on year after year. Now that over 84,000 migrants are landing on its shores every year, swamping its hospitals
with rare diseases, overwhelming its state housing and destroying its tourism industry. Italy has finally had enough of the gross incompetence of the EU and threatened to close its ports and impound the do gooders in the rescue vessels - and who can blame them.
They could not run a whelk stall in Margate yet have total control over the lives of all EU citizens and are tasked with controlling this migrant crisis. This really is beyond parody.
No one is saying that these poor souls should be left to drown but certainly they
should not be allowed to cross the Med unhindered. All this will do is encourage every other resident of the continent to follow suit and if you think that Europe can cope with the
entire population of North Africa, you should be working in Brussels. It cannot. It is driving Europe back to the middle ages, destroying a culture that has taken centuries to refine and driving the hard right up the list at the ballot box. Italy has been screaming for help from the EU for years and have been roundly ignored. Yet one of the main justifications for the EU is that it acts as a socio-economic unifier for the many disparate countries that fall under its umbrella. That its preservation is a vital safeguard against the divisions that tore Europe apart in the 20th century. Without it, we are told, Europe would descend into chaos. In fact, the reverse is true. It is precisely because of the astounding incompetence of Juncker and Co. that Italy is now forced to face alone a humanitarian crisis of biblical proportions. So much for unifying countries, it is ripping them apart and demonstrating their differences in a very sharp light. Other member states have taken their own path, happy to follow the rules only when it suits them, and
Anger Management have closed their borders to all migrants. Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic refuse point-blank to take a single migrant. France and Switzerland have slammed closed their borders with Italy as it is ‘not their problem’. So much for solidarity.
So much for unifying countries, it is ripping them apart and demonstrating their differences in a very sharp light
The United Nations admitted this month that 70% of the migrants are not refugees fleeing war and persecution but economic migrants. Italy is already on its knees due to the ridiculous economic policies of the EU and were having trouble paying their bills before this debacle.
I spent much of my childhood in Italy and my sister has lived there for over 40 years and they are already suffering with 65% youth unemployment in areas, and all they need now is millions of young men with no education, no language skills and no idea even of which country they are in. Their culture is being ripped apart as migrants are housed in churches, schools and museums and this is no temporary measure. Each wave of boats, 1,500 in one weekend alone hit Via Reggio, brings more misery for all and with their European ‘partners’ having closed their borders, they are trapped like a pressure cooker.
Federica Mogherini is the EU’s foreign affairs chief and was the Italian foreign minister in charge of cheese.
The top tier of the EU is run by small town half wits who struggled to even make an impact in their own countries. Juncker, Idiot-in-Chief, was the Prime Minster of Luxembourg - a country with a population of 570,000 people - about the same size as Sheffield. Donald Tusk is the President of the European Council and was the PM of Poland, a country of 1 million as the other 37 million are currently in the UK having fled poverty, deprivation and an incompetent government. Frans Timmermans is the Vice-President of the European Commission and the ex-Foreign Minster of Holland - he couldn’t even make it to the role of PM. Martin Schulz is the President of the European Parliament
and was a failed German politician. Mario Draghi is the President of the European Bank and former Governor of the Bank of Italy, that is currently bankrupt. Federica Mogherini is the EU’s foreign affairs chief and was the Italian foreign minister in charge of cheese. These mediocre politicians are running the EU with a budget of 143 billion Euros and control over the lives of 508 million people - and they were not even elected. They could not run a whelk stall in Margate yet have total control over the lives of all EU citizens and are tasked with controlling this migrant crisis. This really is beyond parody.
The Nazis grew out of German dissatisfaction with the status quo and Hitler got the votes because he promised he would sort out the problems and make Germany great again. We know how that ended. And as for Italy where the memory of Mussolini is never far beneath the surface, this is not a good omen. Europe is creeping closer to an isolationist series of wars than at any time since 1945 thanks to the spectacular incompetence of the European Union. An oxymoron if ever l heard one.
Institute of Directors
A LONE VOICE?
By Dean Orgill, Chair of Sussex IoD and Chairman of Mayo Wynne Baxter www.mayowynnebaxter.co.uk â€˘ www.iod.com
ay back in the archive, issue 4 to be precise, I wrote about the IoD helping you to have your voice
Until such time as the Editor launches the business-based political party (see last monthâ€™s Anger Management) - which hopefully will not be too long, we will need to rely on the existing channels of communication to try to persuade government that it should not be forgetting business, and that the practical and economic expertise that business can provide should not be ignored in favour of political dogma and/or playing to press for approval. The IoD has long had advocating for business, and good governance, as part of its DNA. The Institute exists as an independent association of business leaders and as such, has an objective to ensure that the views of its members are heard and taken into account when the government is reviewing policy, legislation, or is seeking the opinions of the business community in general. But in its lobbying, the IoD looks to represent the interests not just of its members, but of the wider business community as a
whole, to try to encourage and foster a climate favourable to entrepreneurial activity and wealth creation. How does it know what those interests are, in particular in respect of its members? It does so primarily in two ways. The first is the network of members meeting with each other and interacting at local, then regional and ultimately national level, so that views are canvassed, set out, refined and then finally formed. However, whilst this is perhaps described as the art of the opinion gathering, probably more important is the science element which comes from Policy Voice. This is a national monthly survey completed by members which gives the opportunity to provide clear data on what is happening in businesses and not just on business leadersâ€™ views. Topics vary from month to month but have included gathering of detail on how many businesses recognise cyber-security as a real risk to their business, but then also finding out what kind of steps they actually take. The topics are wide-ranging - another was on the employment of past offenders
and information about business views on the effectiveness of rehabilitation of offenders. Plus, as you would expect, the headline topics of Referendum, Brexit and so forth have also been covered but in a way that produces results with which the policy leaders can then present views to government as valid and representative. With the machinery of national government so focussed on the seemingly all-consuming task of Brexit, and with local government having to focus so critically on dealing with ever greater economic constraints, it is even more essential that the views of the wealth creators are expressed and heard. That is not always easy to achieve, but joining the IoD and taking part in Policy Voice will allow you to play your part.
JUST A THOUGHT What critical point would you make to Government if you had its ear for two minutes?
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Published on Jul 24, 2017
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