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Black Country Chamber of Commerce News (417)

Preparations for the 2019 Black Country Business Festival are in full swing, with a number of sponsorship deals already signed and applications to host an event opening after the summer.

The second annual Black Country Business Festival will see a fortnight of business events from conferences, seminars and tours to expos, workshops, demonstrations, showcases, networking sessions and debates, taking place all over the region from 13th to 24th May 2019.

With regards to the recent announcement that the US have re-imposed sanctions on Iran, the Black Country Chamber of Commerce are warning affected businesses to contact them before taking any further action.

Yesterday (7th August), the US President announced he would re-impose a trade embargo on Iran after withdrawing from a 2015 deal that lifted sanctions in return for a halt on Iran’s nuclear programme. Whilst this announcement was met with defiance by the leaders of the UK, France and Germany, who publically pledged their support for the Iran Nuclear Deal, businesses that do not comply with the sanctions could face difficulties when it comes to trading internationally. In relation to this, where necessary, the Black Country Chamber of Commerce will signpost to the appropriate legal entity.

David Hadley and Gail Arnold of the Black Country Chamber of Commerce with Liam Conway of Control Energy CostsBlack Country Chamber of Commerce are delighted to announce Control Energy Costs (CEC) as their new commercial energy provider, offering local businesses help to reduce their energy costs and enhance their efficiency.  

A team of dedicated experts will be on hand to provide advice on how to make factories and offices more energy efficient through understanding consumption profiles, non-commodity costs and analysing energy taxes which most business are unclear on.

Kangaroo Pouch signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Jiangsu Junyi Education Group at a ceremony in the West MidlandsKangaroo Pouch Day Nursery, the largest nursery chain in the West Midlands, has secured a contract in China with support from the Department for International Trade (DIT) and the Black Country Chamber of Commerce.

The business, with nurseries in Tividale, Great Bridge, Charlemont, Willenhall and Walsall, has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Jiangsu Junyi Education Group, announcing a partnership to open British-style nurseries in Nanjing, China.

The latest results of the Quarterly Economic Survey (QES), carried out by the Black Country Chamber of Commerce and in partnership with the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), indicate that companies throughout the region have been experiencing issues relating to cash flow.  

From a manufacturing perspective, 75% of survey respondents reported either improved or constant levels of cash flow in Q2, a rather significant fall from 90% on the previous quarter and from 82% in Q2 2017. Moreover, cash flow also proves to be a concern amongst manufacturing companies at a national level.

BCBF BCCC Expo18 005Black Country Chamber of Commerce are delighted to announce that bookings are now being taken for their Autumn Expo, which is being held at Walsall Football Club on 11th October 2018 from 9am to 1pm.

Delivered in partnership with Walsall Football Club, the Autumn Expo will be taking place in their Stadium Suite, bringing together over 60 exhibitors and more than 500 business delegates from across the region. In essence, it serves as the ideal platform upon which to promote your company and network with local professionals from a variety of sectors.

Nieve Elkington aged 8 receiving the award for her international trade advertBlack Country Chamber of Commerce were delighted to support the successful Express & Star 2018 ‘Design An Ad’ school competition.

As part of their involvement, the Chamber asked local students from New Invention Junior School to design an advert to encourage businesses to trade internationally.

Green Warehouse HiRES jpgBlack Country Chamber of Commerce are celebrating Flexi Narrow Aisle as their Member of the Week after the articulated forklift truck manufacturer has seen growth in a range of export markets in recent years.

Based in Tipton, Flexi Narrow Aisle design, manufacture and market the award winning Flexi AC range of articulated forklift trucks at the company’s UK manufacturing plant, which are then distributed world-wide through a fully supported distributor network.

Corin CraneThe Government has today (12th July) published their long-awaited white paper on the future relationship between the UK and the European Union, outlining key areas of focus including the economy, national sovereignty, movement of people, and the Irish border situation.

From a trade perspective, the white paper calls for a free trade area for goods, giving frictionless border access. In essence, this would “protect uniquely integrated supply chains and ‘just in time’ processes” with no “costly customs declarations”.

The UK manufacturing sector remained relatively flat for June, according to the latest seasonally adjusted IHS Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index® (PMI). The monthly PMI was slightly higher than May’s downwardly revised reading of 54.3 (originally 54.4) and stands almost four points below the 51-month high reached in November last year.

The PMI saw constant growth in the final months of 2017, but growth has been subdued in the first two quarters of 2018. Output growth moderated, to largely offset a mild acceleration in new order growth and improved job creation. At 54.4 in June, output and new orders rose across the consumer, intermediate and investment goods industries. However, the overall rate of expansion in manufacturing output slowed, as growth of new order inflows improved only mildly.

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