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Thousands advised, £100,000s secured, and an events boost on the way: 2021 in review, 2022 on the horizon

Written by Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce | 14 Dec 2021

It’s that time of year again when we look back to the triumphs and tribulations of the past and raise a toast to the opportunities of the future. And from where we’re sitting, there’s much to report!


2021: a strong set of numbers

Challenges have never been very far away in 2021. The economy has still been reeling from Covid, and local businesses have needed more help than ever to weather the disruption.

At the same time, adversity often brings opportunity, and so our job in 2021 has also been to help local businesses seize the day.

Genuine engagement, quality outcomes

In 2021, we worked with over 2,000 businesses, delivering advice and guidance on everything from import and export, to funding sources, and more.

We trained over 260 businesspeople to navigate the Brexit changes, engaged over 1,000 participants in webinars and virtual events, and helped members secure hundreds and thousands of pounds in growth funding.

At the same time, through our management of the Government’s Kickstart scheme, we successfully placed over 200 young people in employment in the county.

We also continued to be one of the leading Chambers for member retention in the British Chambers of Commerce network in 2021 – a fitting end to a frenetic year!

2022: doing what we do best, and more of it

 Of course, the future is about ensuring we continue to deliver on what works, but it’s also about expanding ways in which we can help businesses in a world and an economy that is rapidly changing.

Ramping up global business

International trade, for example, will feature heavily in our programme in 2022, building on the success of the global trade resources we have incorporated into the website throughout 2021.

We will put funded support in place to help local businesses overcome barriers to importing and exporting. This will include a full-service import and export declaration service.

We will also harness our contacts in the overseas Chamber network to connect local businesses to further international opportunities.

Helping with carbon compliance

As we help businesses take advantage of new opportunities, however, we also have a duty to guide them through new compliance requirements.

Accordingly, 2022 will see us working on a partnership to help members navigate their journey to net zero carbon emissions - not least because sustainable credentials are increasingly influencing where buyers and investors spend their money.

Upping our game

The New Year is a time for reinvigoration, and that’s precisely what we will be delivering in 2022!

Aside from relaunching our manifesto, we’ll be growing and strengthening our events programme to bring both networking and learning opportunities to a wider audience, more frequently, and to continue the great success of the member-to-member connections that are such a fundamental part of the value we bring to those who use our services.

Looking outwards to the wider world, we will continue to engage at the heart of Government to ensure local, regional, and national business voices are heard through the noise.

A better future? You’re in business!

That was the year that was, goes the saying –  and as we leave it behind, we must learn our lessons from it, and plan to do better in 2022.

This is precisely what we have done – and we’re ready to face up to the challenges and opportunities that await us.

If you’re already with us, we’ll be taking you along on the ride. If you’re not, why not make a New Year’s resolution to get on board?

Next stop: 2022!

Topics: business, planning, trade, International Trade, COVID-19, success

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