London Stock Exchange welcomes Berkshire Business Network

London Stock Exchange welcomes Berkshire Business Network

The Berkshire Business Network arose out of a chance remark made by a local business owner during a visit that Bracknell MP, Dr Phillip Lee, was making to their offices. They highlighted that there were several networking groups available in the region, and that these would sometimes be addressed by a local MP. But what was missing, they said, was an informal group where businesses of different sizes, and from different sectors, could meet to exchange ideas, advice, wisdom and then be able speak with, and question, the people who actually took the decisions.

Phillip immediately realised that this was a problem from which all sides could benefit, as ministers are always anxious to overcome the filter that can surround Westminster, by getting out and meeting business leaders face to face.And so the BBN was formed. Of course, in politics, as in business, nothing runs smoothly. Just a few months after being formed, the vote in favour of Britain leaving the EU meant that some of the guests who had been lined up for events were no longer in their same posts. However, the BBN has remained true to its objectives and scored a real success last year when it was addressed by one of the ministers responsible for handling Brexit. Although its main goal is to support growth and employment in the area, by allowing today’s business owners the opportunity to speak first-hand to those in power, it also looks towards the next generation. It has pledged to donate 10% of any annual surplus to local charities, particularly those focussed on young people and supporting those who wish to set out in business themselves.

Dr Lee has said that Local business leaders are the unsung heroes and heroines of our communities.

"It is often forgotten that, without businesses generating revenues there would be fewer jobs and no money available to fund public services.

"I hope that through the BBN we can help our members to grow. You never know, maybe one of our members here today may be back at the LSE in the future celebrating their own listing."