The Kettering Business Network was launched by Simon Cox, Marie and Nigel Baker and Sarah McCarron in June 2015 and covers the Kettering, Desborough, Rothwell and Burton Latimer area. Soon after the launch, the team were joined by Nick Freeman and, soon after, joined by Bryan Lade. In 2017, Robyn Allen joined the team to assist with the growth of the network.
The business network was formed in the absence of a local “town/district focussed” business network and no active Chamber of Commerce for local businesses.
The Kettering Business Network is a not for profit business network for business owners and business development staff within the Kettering District. We aim for attendances of 80% within the District of Kettering and 20% from outside the area so we get a different mix of businesses attending.
Attendees range from owners of micro businesses (sole traders), small business owners and representatives from some of the larger firms within the District.
We work closely with the Northamptonshire Chamber of Commerce and help connect local businesses where they can grow their business, their confidence, their knowledge and feel they have somewhere to come as business owners.
The running cost of the business network has been sponsored by a number of micro businesses.
In both October 2016 and 2017, we were a Finalists in the Northamptonshire SME Business Awards in the “Business Network of the Year” category. In October 2018, we were announced as Runners Up for the “Business Network of the Year.”
Previous speakers at the Kettering Business Network include: Philip Hollobone MP, Karthik Nagesan (local resident and contestant on the recent series of The Apprentice), Kettering Borough Council plus other local business owners who have helpful advice to share to the local business community.
Meetings have been held at local businesses including Kettering Conference Centre, Wicksteed Park, The Kettering Park Hotel, Barton Hall, The Ritz Desborough, Kettering Rugby Club, Kettering Town Football Club, The Miniature Rifle Sports Bar, Tax Assist and Mugs Cafe.
We have also been joined by students from Southfield School for Girls so they can learn more about the local business community and also present their Young Enterprise Company Programme.
Our website is well populated with business news from across the District and includes positive news from local businesses, tips for business owners who wish to attend business network meetings, updates from our monthly meetings and details of business events in the District that we have been asked or offered to publicise. All this is done voluntary.
Our meetings have been well received by local business owners who wish to network locally and we have since inspired other business owners to launch their own business network under their town’s name. In January 2017, the Northumberland Business Network launched in the North East and in March 2017, the Wellingborough Business Network, Corby Business Network and East Northants Business Network all launched with the Northampton Business Network, Daventry Business Network and Market Harborough Business Network launching soon after.
The vision is to grow the business network to form a UK Business Network which will help local business owners across the UK. In March alone, the five meetings mentioned above were attended by 208 attendees with 182 from Northamptonshire alone.
We have tried to launch midweek meetings so we can accommodate town centre business owners; however, they have been unable to attend. We will be holding further midweek network meetings in the future.
Ranked 1st in Google Search for “Kettering business network”, “Kettering business”, “network Kettering”, “networking in Kettering”, “business networking in Kettering”
Ranked 2nd in Google Search for “business Kettering”
Leader: Simon Cox (07533 774420)
Leadership Team: Marie Baker, Nigel Baker, Sarah McCarron, Nick Freeman, Robyn Allen
Instagram: Kettering Business Network