Bondholder East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire) has won overall Chamber of the Year title at the prestigious British Chambers of Commerce Business Awards.
Now in its 15th year, the national Chamber Business Awards is one of the showpiece events in the business calendar, highlighting the role of business in delivering growth and prosperity for the UK and local communities.
The Chamber was also joined on the night by four member companies – Bondholders Tidyco and Trent Barton as well as Dalycom, Shirebrook Academy – which had gone on to enjoy regional success following their respective achievements at the Chamber’s Business Awards across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire.
It has been a busy and productive 2018 for the Chamber which, as the leading business support organisation in the region, continues to dedicate itself to providing its members with a comprehensive and ever-evolving suite of products, services and information to help businesses succeed and thrive.
Reflecting on the award, Francis Martin, President of the British Chambers of Commerce, said: “East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire) has shown impressive growth and retention in recent years. The strategic work and engagement of the Chamber with local stakeholders embodies the mission of Chambers of Commerce everywhere.
“Its efforts to engage with other Chambers and improve member offerings is a testament to its dedication. Congratulations to the entire East Midlands team, truly worthy recipients of this award.”
Steve Charles, Head of Business Partnerships at award sponsor Quest, said: “Congratulations to East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire), deserved winners of this prestigious award.
“It is a great example of how a Chamber can make a significant contribution to the national network while also taking a leading and influential role in its own business community. It has developed a first-class service to members, which is witnessed by its continued growth. Well done to all the team.”
Scott Knowles, Chief Executive of East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire), added: “To win Chamber of the Year is a fantastic achievement and a great endorsement of the extensive activity we deliver to our members across the region.
“This acknowledgment is testament to the dedication and hard work shown by all the staff at the Chamber, who made this award possible by continuing to work tirelessly and passionately on behalf of our members to fulfil our overall objective – to enhance East Midlands businesses.”
Turnover at the East Midlands Chamber rose by more than £1m during "a year of growth and expansion" for the organisation.
Newly filed accounts for the chamber have revealed that its turnover increased from £8m to £9.3m in the year to 31 March 2018.
The organisation, which represents Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire, also reported a pre-tax profit of £266,107, up from £131,219.
International and ISPO income dropped from £1m to £984,092 during the while but membership and training earnings rose from £3.2m to £3.21m.
Its D2N2 income rose from £997,067 to £1.1m while earnings from other income sources went from £2.3m to £3.2m.
Chief executive Scott Knowles said: "It’s another solid set of results, reflecting the fantastic growth the chamber has seen over the year.
"Membership numbers continue to rise – now standing at over 4200 – and the broad range of products and services we deliver to members and others across the East Midlands continue to perform well across the board.
"All businesses are having to deal with uncertainty at the moment and the chamber is no different.
"However, we face 2019 in a really strong position – this is a reflection of all the great work our staff do and the continued support given to us by members, which is best recognised by our recent success, being awarded the national Chamber of the Year Award for 2018."
A statement signed off by the board said: "2017-2018 was a year of growth and expansion for the chamber.
"While the full business implications of the UK's exit from the European Union are yet to be known, the chamber and its board have been proactive in assessing the organisation's potential exposure to different future scenarios including funding changes and reviewing these regularly through its risk and audit committee.
"The chamber optimised its facilities following its February 2017 Chesterfield office relocation and its 2016 Leicester occupation and management of the Friars Mill managed workspace facility.
"It refurbished its Derby office located at Pride Park and determined to dispose of legacy investment properties located in Chesterfield as these were not core business."
The chamber has its registered office in Chesterfield and its partner companies include the likes of Wilko, HSBC, Rolls-Royce, Derby County FC, Toyota, DHL, Air-IT and De Montfort University.
The organisation, which has more than 150 employees, is owned by its member businesses which at year-end stood at a total of 4,175, up from 4,071. The chamber has since said that membership levels now stand at more than 4,200.