Engaging the Local Economy

A thriving economy is the cornerstone of a strong community; when local businesses are successful, the whole community benefits. Since 1997, we have been committed to supporting the local Small, Medium and Micro Enterprise (SMME) business community through initiatives such as East London Business Place and South London Procurement Network, helping them to get started, scale up and grow. By supporting SMMEs, we are helping to secure a sustainable economy for our local communities.

East London Business Place

East London Business Place (ELBP) has been helping local businesses to grow and succeed in East London and the Thames Gateway since 1997. The project was set up to ensure that the SMME community would benefit from the development which had started at Canary Wharf and was the catalyst for further development in the surrounding areas.

Led jointly by CWG and the East London Business Alliance (ELBA) charity, ELBP provides SMMEs with the capacity-building business growth support they need to be competitive and sustainable, including workshops, one-to-one support and supply-chain contract brokerage, through initiatives such as its current Building Legacies programme.


Frontispiece

Frontispiece has been a fixture on the east London antique map and print scene since it first opened its doors in 1989. After moving from a gallery at One Canada Square…

Frontispiece has been a fixture on the east London antique map and print scene since it first opened its doors in 1989. After moving from a gallery at One Canada Square to a new workspace at Cannon Workshops, the company became a member of ELBP, and subsequently joined the Building Legacies programme in 2017 for support to help them move away from traditional promotional activity, thus enabling them to research and implement more current marketing strategies and therefore retain existing business whilst attracting a new client-base.

A Building Legacies mentor supported Frontispiece owner Reg Beer to develop an innovative marketing strategy, including social media and blogging. As a consequence, Frontispiece have not only materially increased their 2019 sales, but also managed to safeguard two jobs. Frontispiece now aims to increase its go-forward online visibility and future marketability by digitising its vast collection of prints and maps, whilst using social media for networking, article posting, audio commentary and video content.

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South London Procurement Network

Canary Wharf Group established South London Procurement Network (SLPN) in 2012 to provide business support to SMMEs close to our Southbank Place development and to promote local procurement for the project, bringing together small local suppliers and big contractors working on the project. SLPN ran 11 events in 2019, including Meet the Buyer events, training seminars and workshops covering topics such as strategic business planning, web marketing and leadership skills.


Hobs Group

Alex Redfarn from Hobs Group began attending SLPN events in 2016 after coming across a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event. The event gave Alex the opportunity to speak directly with some of London’s leading names…

Alex Redfarn from Hobs Group began attending SLPN events in 2016 after coming across a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event. The event gave Alex the opportunity to speak directly with some of London’s leading names in construction, and to connect with SLPN staff, who were able to connect him to a considerable network of contractors, which has since become a cornerstone of the business.

Alex has built and maintained a solid working relationship with a large construction company in London through his SLPN contacts. Since then, Hobs Group has flourished into one of London’s first fully sustainable printing and recycling services. The connections and support received through SLPN have been instrumental in helping Hobs Group grow, and the company continues to receive considerable benefits from its association with the network.

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£216.5 million
in local spend in 2019

36%
of CWG’s spend was with local businesses in 2019

£56.7 million
spent with local SMMEs in 2019