Hundreds of members of a West Midlands business networking group have contributed more than £225 million to the region’s economy over the last year, the organisation’s bosses have calculated.
Pete Higgs, Executive Director at Business Network International (BNI) Black Country, Birmingham and Coventry revealed that some 550 members have passed £32 million directly between each other in 12 months.
But he said that once a transaction was complete between two members within the region, it is spent again and again in the local economy up to seven times before it goes elsewhere.
This is known as the Velocity of Money theory – as people who gained work then ‘paid it forward’ by also investing in someone else in the region’s products or services.
“That means in total BNI members in the West Midlands have contributed £225 million,” said Pete.
“Our forecasts show that we will be growing to around 700 BNI members in the coming months. This means they are likely to be passing £50 million between them and in turn, that represents some £350 million for our region’s economy.
“I’m so proud that as a group of dedicated, supportive businesses, we have been able to contribute such a significant figure.
“Our members work hard to help each other, not only with business passed between each other, but more importantly, work carried out to their contacts in the West Midlands and beyond,” he said.
“The fact that this figure can be calculated as it’s reported that the West Midlands remains the fastest growing UK region outside London is great news. Experts had forecast further growth in 2019 of 1.7 per cent and I can say our West Midlands BNI members are a big part of that.”
Independent financial advisor, Paul Mabbett, who heads an award-winning Sutton Coldfield BNI group, said that often new members were inspired to join because of figures demonstrated of how much their bottom line could be improved.
He said: “My group was recently named the group with the highest net growth in recent months.
“It has passed more than £3 million since being set up just two years ago. This is an average figure for a BNI group – but the beauty is knowing that if for example a tradesman collaborates with another member, they may then add another member to the project and they also spend their money on expertise from within the region.”
Pete added: “By joining BNI you are expanding your network of trusted suppliers, gaining in confidence and meeting like-minded business people who are going through the same experience.
“One BNI member who has consistently led a league table of highest contributing members both in the region and indeed across the whole of the UK and Ireland, is Paresh Parmar of SEO Results 4U, who attends Momentum BNI in Solihull.
There are now 21 BNI groups in the Black Country and Birmingham and Coventry, and four in a pre-launch stage. One newer group is BNI Century with around 40 members that meets on a Friday lunchtime at the Hub at Walsall College.
BNI is a global organisation founded in America in 1985. Each group allows one person from a given profession to help members build profitable relationships and avoid conflict.
To find out about what professions are still to be represented and where in the West Midlands BNI groups are held, please contact award-winning BNI Director Consultant Dawn Adlam on 07880 725564.