Caerphilly Business Forum: Meet the Buyer in Bargoed was promising
One of the challenges facing government at all levels is to rekindle economies at a local level.
Across the UK there are regions where businesses are thriving and employment levels are relatively good while in others economic activity is desperately low.
The latter areas are often earmarked for inward investment projects in which governments have a hand so they can redress some of those imbalances.
But how much they can do is often a mute point. They need to ensure value for money and natural the tendency may be to opt for the lowest bidder.
Most people will have no problem with the principles of that but when the winner is an industrial giant which ships its own workforce in and out the losers are smaller, local businesses – the very entities the projects were aimed at re-energising.
So it was very promising to see a “Meet the Buyer” event last month at which local businesses were invited to express their interest in tendering for contracts in the construction a major new retail centre in Bargoed.
It was organised by Caerphilly County Borough Council with Caerphilly Business Forum, the Supplier Development Service and the Wales Co-operative Centre all working in partnership with Simons Developments Ltd.
The retail site features a main store (pre-let to the supermarket Morrisons) and seven smaller retail units with a 400 space car park. There are around 90 packages in the build, ranging from security to structural steel work. A copy of the subcontractor packages and an Expression of Interest form can be downloaded.
Cllr Ron Davies, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, said: “We are delighted that Simons are giving our businesses the opportunity to tender for the work.”
And so we all should be. I hope other developers and politicians will make engagement with local businesses a priority in future.
Chairman, Caerphilly Business Forum
For more information about Caerphilly Business Forum and its events call 029 2125 1395 or email Natalie@cbforum.co.ukFollow @CaerphillyObsvr