Independent businesses are key to the success of a city centre and add vibrancy to the environment, Birmingham is very fortunate to have over 140 independent retailers in the city centre
The BID offer support to this sector through marketing campaigns alongside assistance with Business Rates Relief and liaising with utility and highways works affecting the trading environment.
Retail Birmingham puts the spotlight on the thriving independent scene in city centre with an awareness campaign every July which ties in with the nation ‘Independents Day’ campaign.
In 2014 we created a printed mini newspaper that featured the faces and owners behind 10 of the city’s key independents, as well as a full directory of the entire independent offer available across the city centre including a shopping map. 5,000 copies were printed and distributed across the city’s independent retailers to coincide with national independents’ week and a PDF of the newspaper was available to download on the website.
A constant stream of stories and messages were pushed through the consumer social media channels using the hashtag #ShopShopIndependents – this achieved in excess of 24,000 twitter impressions in just over a week.
Retail Birmingham also invited independent retailers from across the city to celebrate at a private BBQ and drinks reception on the terrace at the Library of Birmingham. This provided an opportunity for independents members to network with peers and other independent businesses across the city centre.
Metro Extension Fund
Retail Birmingham lobbied Birmingham City Council to support independent businesses directly affected by the Metro Works. Working in partnership we secured Business Rates Relief for those businesses directly affected by the works.
34 businesses successfully applied for the business rates relief for the period 2013/14, equating to a figure of over £500,000 savings for independent businesses.
Retail Birmingham were instrumental in these savings and continue to lobby on behalf of independent businesses.
Retail Crime Operations Radio’s
Retail Birmingham currently fund 60 radios through the Retail Crime Operation, which are distributed amongst independent businesses. The radio’s ensure business owners have access to West Midlands Police, PCSO’s and Street Wardens at the touch of a button if an issue in store does arise.
There are over 500 businesses connected to the RCO radios proving a vital link in sharing security information and any potential threats.