Early bird business brings home the bacon
AN Ilfracombe company has enjoyed a recession-busting year, thanks to a �189,000 job obtained at an early bird business breakfast meeting. A lucrative contract for fitting out 27 holiday apartments fell to interior design business VK Colourworks at Hele a
AN Ilfracombe company has enjoyed a recession-busting year, thanks to a �189,000 job obtained at an early bird business breakfast meeting.
A lucrative contract for fitting out 27 holiday apartments fell to interior design business VK Colourworks at Hele after a word-of-mouth referral passed on at one of the weekly meetings of the Barum Chapter of Business Network International (BNI,) one of many across the UK.
The group meets at the Wrey Arms in Barnstaple every Tuesday at 7am and its 17 members are all local company owners who meet to discuss ways of promoting local business and pass on referrals.
The group itself has enjoyed its best year to date and chapter director Chris McRae estimates it is on target to generate more than �600,000 in business for the local economy this year.
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For VK Colourworks, membership for the past seven years has provided a tremendous boost, not only with the most recent contract, but they estimate it has provided almost three quarters of their business to date. It has also helped Vicky and Karley to establish a fledging company when both were new to the area.
The �189,000 referral was passed on by a new member of the chapter and was for full internal furnishing of 27 apartments in Newquay. "Off the back of that job we have done several other apartments and are quoting at the moment for 14 more plus another eight in other areas of Newquay - and it's all a knock-on effect from that one referral," said Karley. "We're both from out of the area and met by chance when we arrived. Because we didn't have means of meeting anyone in the business sector, our BNI membership was the first thing that came about. I think it would have taken a lot longer to be known in the area otherwise, not to mention having other businesses on hand for advice. We still would have got there, but it would have taken us a lot longer to achieve what we have and we're grateful to them for being so supportive."
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Chris McRae, who runs local plumbing service The Works M&B Ltd, explained how the Barum BNI chapter worked by only allowing one representative of each trade or profession membership at any one time.
"We currently have 17 members but there are always other vacancies to be filled," he said. It's the best thing I have ever done and is good not only for passing on potential business but also as a business forum to discuss new ideas."
To find out more about the Barum BNI Chapter, contact Chris on 07773 555210.