Driving Hastings forward 01424 205481

The 29th September see the Let’s Do Business Hastings Expo return to The Hastings Centre.

It promises to be an exciting year as we link in with the 950th Anniversary of the 1066 Battle of Hastings, so come along and try some archery, but not in the inflatable lounge!

Not only have we managed to get Google to run 2 digital workshops, but we have acquired Levi Roots of Reggae Reggae Sauce to come and share his experiences.  To hear how his business venture started and grew, why don’t you come along and be inspired on 29th September from 10am – 4pm.  Visit our website www.letsdobusiness.org/hastings  for further details.

We’ll be starting the day off with a speed networking session, run by Sussex Business Bureau so there will be plenty to see and do.

If you want your business to move forward and grow, exhibiting your business is a great way to show people what you can do.  You get plenty of time to talk to visitors as well as other exhibitors and build up your contacts in the local area.  The show is attended by a mix of businesses from a wide range of industries from around Sussex and a few further afield.

It’s free for visitors so if you want to come and meet local businesses, or wish to exhibit, please take a look at www.letsdobusiness.org/hastings  and decide to take the next step.

Stands for the Hastings Let’s Do Business show in September are now on sale.

The event will be taking place on Thursday 29th September 2016 at the Hastings Centre.

What’s new for 2016Levi Roots

  • Levi Roots as a guest speaker
  • Stands starting from £175+VAT
  • Early bird offer if you book by 5th August
  • Two FREE google work-shops
  • 1066 Battle of Hastings theme Archery on site.

It’s a show not to be missed!

For further details of the show click here.

For further information please contact Wes Game on wes.game@ldbgroup.co.uk or 0844 415 2272, alternatively visit the Let’s Do Business website here .

The Let’s Do Business Eastbourne Expo will be taking place on Thursday 30th June at the Winter Garden.

Here is what will be happening throughout the day.let's-do-business-hastings

10.00 – Doors open

10.30 – Sussex Business Bureaus Speed Networking – Booking will be required in advance

12.30 – The Digital Garage from Google FREE workshop – Tell your story online

13.30 – The Digital Garage from Google FREE workshop – Reach new customers online

14.30 – Guest speaker Declan Curry formerly of the BBC

16.00 – Exhibition closes

Pre-Registration for Eastbourne is now open, to save you time on the day please register here.  Upon arrival at the Exhibition make your way to the Pre-Registraion visitors desk, where a name bag and visitor guide will be available to you.

The Chairman’s Business & Community Lunch Club will be taking place at the Azur at the Marina Pavillion on Wednesday 18th March from 12pm-2pm.azur

The guest speaker at this event will be the East Sussex Business Navigator Fred Thomas.

Tickets for the lunch are £15.00 which is to include a waiter service 2 course lunch, networking over tea and coffee and fantastic business advice from #AskFred.

To book your place then simply email  lordbrettofhastings@aol.co.uk or call the Azur on 01424 447461


Following the success of their Bexhill lunch club, McPhersons Chartered Accountants have launched a brand new business lunch club for businesses in Hastings. This will be an informal event, held at the White Rock Hotel, where local businesses can enjoy some excellent food whilst networking.

McPhersons have been administering the Bexhill Lunch Club for over two years and from this, the results have been that it regularly attracts between 30 and 40 business people. It is held at the Trattoria Italiana and the De La Warr Pavilion.

The White Rock Hotel is a McPhersons client and was chosen for the first lunch club. It enjoys some of the best views in Hastings and has a reputation for great value food.

All business people are welcome to attend. Booking, payment and menu choices are in advance and more information can be found at here.

The largest business to business exhibition and networking event returns to Hastings on Thursday 29th October with Lets do Business Hastings.

Returning to Sussex Coast College again this year, the show will welcome hundreds of business owners, directors and key-decision makers under one roof.

Let’s Do Business Hastings offers companies the perfect opportunity to promote their business, make new connections and generate new leads. All through good old-fashioned networking!

Exhibition stands are selling fast, with more than 50% booked up within just one week.

Wes Game, exhibition organiser said:

“We’ve had a great response to the Hastings exhibition again this year, which I think is testament to the thriving business community in the area.

“There is no substitute for face-to-face networking and the Let’s Do Business exhibitions give companies a great platform for this.”

The show will also feature speed networking in the morning and four free interesting and thought-provoking seminars throughout the day.

Stands start from just £215 (plus VAT) – book your space today online.

Business people from across East Sussex gathered at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill to learn how innovation, partnership working and good design drives success.

Around 50 people attended the Business Growth by Design event on Tuesday (April 28) organised by the University of Brighton in partnership with business support service Locate East Sussex and sponsored by Marshall Tufflex.


Philip Johnson, Director of Locate East Sussex, hosted the seminar and networking event which began with a welcome from Stewart Drew, Director and CEO of the De La Warr Pavilion, who spoke about how the venue has achieved a sharp increase in commercial profit.

Simon Riley, CEO of MakerClub, told the audience how his start-up business teaches high-end digital skills to young people and that plans are in place to franchise his venture.

James Byford, Research Fellow from the Fusebox24 knowledge exchange project, explained how this experimental new start-up programme used a variety of techniques to support innovators develop their businesses.

The third seminar was from Professor Gillian Youngs, the University of Brighton’s Professor of Digital Economy, who focused on how the digital economy provides new opportunities for innovation.

This was followed by Dr Carlos Peralta, Senior Lecturer in the University of Brighton’s School of Art, Design and Media, who explained the benefits of collaborations between designers and scientists.

A question and answer session evolved into an interesting discussion about business and innovation, followed by networking with drinks.

Philip Johnson said: “The event was a great success and thanks to the speakers for their thought-provoking presentations which sparked interesting discussions afterwards and gave attendees interesting ideas on ways to grow their business.”

Business In Hastings has an exclusive report from Sarah Owen, Labour candidate for MP in Hastings & Rye regarding her recent trip to China to exchange ideas and promote the local Vacuum Technology and other high tech manufacturing industries that the Hastings & Rother area becoming world famous for. Here in her own words is an overview of the trip.

We also have a small gallery of images from here trip which you can go to here.

Hastings: The South East manufacturing hub.


Sarah arriving at Songshun Lake high tech park

When I talk to people outside of Hastings they normally say to me; ‘Oh, arrow in the eye, tapestry, invasion by Normans.’ They’re far less likely to know about building components for the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, high-powered lasers or high vacuum technology. Still less likely are people to mention that Hastings is the high tech hub of South-East England.

Hastings, which is my home town is the birth place of innovations including the first television broadcast to teaching Turing, but Hastings doesn’t just deserve that recognition, our future as a town depends on it. It isn’t enough to just be a high-tech hub, Hastings needs to be known as a high-tech hub.

Global influence

The investment that our businesses need to grow, thrive, and create the well-paid, high skilled jobs that our town needs, depend on our town’s reputation. However, in today’s world, our competitors, clients, and supply chains are not just limited to the UK, they’re global.

They’re in cities like Guangzhou and Shenzhen in southern China, where I visited earlier this month.

These two cities, both in the province of Guangdong, are China’s high tech pioneers. Guangdong’s open, outward-looking economic policies stand greatly at odds with the lagging social and political development in the rest of China – the world’s second largest economy whilst still being a developing nation. However, there is still plenty that we could learn, gain and offer this industrial powerhouse – with particular regard to high tech manufacturing.

Growth & Investment

Since the late 80s, Guangdong area has seen phenomenal growth, seeing only a brief dip in GDP growth during the global recession to a still enviable 7.2% – putting the UK’s forecast (and overdue) 2.2% in the shade. As a province, it has consistently led China’s growth over the past 30 years and is predicted to grow at above 8% and contribute another $900 billion to China’s economy.

None of this happened by accident. It took a deliberate, conscious decision by the Chinese government to turn fields of crops and low grade industry into science parks, technology hubs and business clusters. It was only possible with investment from business, the state, academia and by attracting support from overseas.

One example is the Guangzhou Science City, which is home to almost every kind of science and high tech industry you can think of including high vacuum, bio-tech, IT and renewable technology to name just a few. From its inception, the science city hasn’t stood still and constantly looks to support and welcome the next big technological innovation.

Support and R&D

This is heavily supported by the state through the Guangzhou Development District. On my trip, I met the Director of the committee responsible for it, who explained not only how much they had financially supported businesses in the science city, with reduced rents and the highest grade facilities but also practical business support and R&D. There is now 24/7 support for new businesses – his phone was never switched off.

We need to ask ourselves what we can learn from how they encourage growth.  This is most evident when attracting foreign investment, where applications for foreign direct investment are completed by the authorities within 3 working days. Without this commitment, and the continued support of the local development departments, thriving companies like Rio Bio would not have been able to expand as quickly as they had.

Maintaining our position on the global stage

Next to the continued austerity and slow growth we’re faced with here, Guangdong’s example is enviable. When I told both the Chinese businesses and development committee that our own local council will face a 70% reduction in funding from central government by 2017, they asked how on earth we expected to support growth in Hastings? And that is, quite literally the million dollar question.

Whether this support is replicated in the UK by our calls for a dedicated British Investment Bank to support SMEs, a cut in business rates or freezing energy bills which will have a direct impact on particularly manufacturing business’s sky rocketing overheads – it is clear that Government must act now to provide practical support to our local industries if we not only want to maintain our position, but to continue being the birth place of innovation.

Hastings: Time to show the world we’re open for business


Sarah at the first Tec 66 event in summer with Maggie Aderin Pocock, Lord Bassam and Council leader Jeremy Birch and business leaders.

Hastings is home to established names with world-class reputations, General Dynamics, Torr Scientific and Photek among them. But we need some of the reputation of those brands and our excellent experienced service industry, to not only be located in our town, but associated with it as well.

Businesses in Guangdong are crying out for the quality that Hastings’ businesses can offer, as much as we are for high quality jobs. But Hastings’ reputation for high-tech manufacturing and services is barely known elsewhere in Britain, let alone on the other side of the world, in China.

Tec 66: Why its important

This is why events such as Tecc 66 are so important. We need to be prepared to shout about what we are good at, and sell to a global market, which is what I did at every opportunity that I was visiting businesses in China. Nothing less will do in today’s globalised world.

That is why I am working to bring more international exhibitors to the next Tec 66 event and other similar events for our creative industries. That will help build on existing trade links, support our businesses to join major international supply chains, create jobs and ultimately ensure that Hastings has an economic identity that is known worldwide.

To get in touch with Sarah or to follow her via Twitter please see below

Email: Sarah@sarahowen.org.uk

Twitter: @sarahowen_

You can also find out more about Sarah at her website here.

The University of Brighton Hastings would like to invite the business community to their Business Enterprise Seminar.

 Business Enterprise Seminar 2013

  •  9 December, 5-9pm, Priory Square Building, University of Brighton in Hastings TN34 1EA
Business enterprise seminar 2013 at brighton university hastings campus

Business enterprise seminar 2013 at University of Brighton’s Hastings campus

This free public Business Enterprise seminar for local business owners and entrepreneurs is part of a series of events to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the University of Brighton presence in Hastings. Speakers include faculty from Brighton Business School and business students studying at Hastings campus.

Come and listen to the latest thinking about how to overcome challenges faced by small businesses locally in the current climate: challenges concerning finance availability and how to develop and grow businesses beyond start-up. Our students need your support as business owners of the future.

Refreshments provided along with opportunities to discuss and network with other local business entrepreneurs. To book your free space(s) for this seminar please email Chris Matthews at C.R.Matthews@brighton.ac.uk, or call 01273 642135. Booking will be open until 8th December 2013.

Speakers include Professor Aidan Berry, Dean of Brighton Business School, Dr George Tsekouras, Principal Research Fellow at CENTRIM, Brighton Business School (founder and Lead academic of the ProfitNet network) and local entrepreneur Sonia Blizzard of Beaming Ltd, part of the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 list for 2010, 2011 and 2012.

Further information can be found here

An opportunity has arisen for the Hastings and Bexhill area to potentially have assisted status. Assisted status means that business in the area may be eligible for extra funding which can aid capital purchases or to take on additional staff or help with training. Basically its good for the area so its worth trying to get.

assisted status

Help Hastings & Bexhill get assisted status.

This will need the support of the local business community (including Business In Hastings visitors).

All that is required is a letter of support needs to be sent to Government Minister Michael Fallon backing our bid for Assisted Area Status for Hastings & Bexhill area.

The area meets most of the criteria for assisted status but the bid will be strengthened considerably by businesses writing in with support letters.

Below is a draft letter to Michael Fallon for you to adapt on your company letterhead and we at Business In Hastings would be really grateful for your help to achieve this important recognition, to attract funding and investment for the town longer term.

Here is the PDF version of the letter: Assisted area letter to Michael Fallon. You can use this, however you may need to highlight the text and copy to a word or open office document

If you would like a Microsoft  Word version (.doc or .docx) then please send an email to Jim Christy here.

Any extra funding and help to improve the local economy for both businesses and for the everyone who lives in the area is a good thing and the request will more likely be considered if the local business community is behind it.

We’ll keep everyone updated via the site and our newsletters. If you haven’t signed up for our newsletter yet then you can do so here.

Its well worth doing and only take a few seconds to sign up and gets you a summary of all the important business and developement news that’s happening in Hastings & Rother.


You can now simply sign up at Amber Rudd MP’s website, the letter is already ready and all you need to do is add your name and email address and it will be sent immediately. Here’s the link.