Colors: Purple Color

South East's leading Independent foodservice wholesaler, Q Catering, has started its vast warehouse expansion development this month, resulting in an extra 11,600 sq. ft of storage facilities across the site. The Sittingbourne-based company is a trusted and reliable foodservice wholesaler which offers an ever-increasing range of quality grocery, chilled, and frozen food products across more than 1,700 product lines, from local and national suppliers.

The deadline for organisations to submit applications for a number of voluntary sector contracts being offered by the City of Wolverhampton Council has been extended.

There are eight Lots, valued at between £30,000 and £265,000 per annum. They are: Welfare, Debt, Housing and Benefits Advice; Co-ordinated City Skills System; Infrastructure Representation, Growth and Partnership Working; Infrastructure Co-design and Co-production; Infrastructure Organisational Support, Capacity Building and Training; Citywide Structured and Supported Volunteering; Volunteering Strategy and Digital Platform; and Self Employment and Entrepreneurs.

The energy crisis is driving a shift in public opinion where a majority of voters now want more generous targeted financial support for households struggling with their finances, new polling reveals today. Six in ten voters want targeted support for struggling households to help with the cost of not just energy but also with other essentials such as food and water, according to new polling by Public First.

Two influential figures from the Midlands business community are to be awarded honorary doctorates from Birmingham City University in recognition of their outstanding achievements to the region.

Paul Cadman and Paul Faulkner, who have supported, developed and led businesses ranging from entrepreneurial start-ups to globally recognised brands, will receive one of the highest distinctions a university is able to confer, at a Symphony Hall Birmingham ceremony on Tuesday 30 August.

Businesses across Dudley are being urged to “fly the flag” for the borough and apply for a major national award. The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise recognise outstanding achievement in businesses.

The leader of Dudley Council is urging businesses to apply for the awards and highlight the “outstanding” work that goes on in the borough.

As per the report published by The Brainy Insights, the global urban air mobility market is expected to grow from USD 2.1 billion in 2021 to USD 29.0 billion by 2030, at a CAGR of 33.9% during the forecast period 2022-2030.

Urban air mobility (UAM) is a highly automated, on-demand, unpiloted, cargo or passenger-carrying air transportation service. The concept of transportation has made city travel easier by avoiding traffic jams and congestion on roads.

Virgin Money has launched a new online service called Marketplace where small business banking customers can access a number of different useful services offered by best-in-class digital providers.

Following on from the successful launch of M-Track* earlier this year, Marketplace is the next step in the ecosystem that Virgin Money is developing, offering digital services to help customers run their businesses successfully.

Work has started on transforming another swathe of derelict brownfield land into a new industrial park following a £6.5m investment by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA). Property developer St Francis Group has begun construction of a 113,000 sqft industrial unit in the Darlaston Enterprise Zone in Walsall, creating more than 195 new jobs.

The scheme, called Parallel 113, is a key part of the wider Black Country Enterprise Zone which is being led by the Black Country LEP and aims to unlock and redevelop nearly 300 acres of former industrial land, delivering 3,000 new jobs. The Parallel 113 site is the size of 10 football pitches and will be just a five-minute walk from the new Darlaston railway station – a project being led by Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), which is part of the WMCA.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and chair of the WMCA, said: “It’s wonderful news that an investment of over £6.5million from the WMCA is helping to regenerate yet another brownfield site at the same time as creating valuable industrial jobs for local residents.

“The Parallel 113 scheme forms part of the wider Black Country Enterprise Zone vision which has an important role to play in the economic revitalisation of the wider area. This dovetails nicely with our development of nearby Darlaston Railway Station and demonstrates how improved transport connectivity can attract further investment as we continue to transform this area for the better in the months and years ahead – maintaining our strong commitment to brownfield-first development.”

Tom Westley, Chair of Black Country LEP, added: “This is a perfect example of not only delivering premium industrial space within the West Midlands but bringing the Black Country’s Enterprise Zone ambition to light and creating additional jobs in the local area. The Black Country LEP sees Parallel 113 as a huge improvement to the local economy allowing us to continue to establish the Black Country as an ideal place for businesses and communities to thrive.”

St Francis Group has a strong track record as a brownfield land and regeneration specialist with a growing reputation for developing high-quality industrial warehouse schemes across the UK.

Gareth Williams, St Francis Group development director, said: “We are delighted to have secured this investment. The start on site marks another opportunity to deliver another speculative Grade A industrial hub for the region, of market leading quality in such prominent location adjoining the M6 motorway.”

Councillor Mike Bird, WMCA portfolio holder for housing and land and leader of Walsall Council added: “This development of high-quality commercial warehousing will help create many new jobs for local people while regenerating another brownfield site. The WMCA is continuing to invest in the transformation of brownfield land to not only help preserve our green belt but also drive our region’s economic recovery by providing businesses with the places they need to grow.”

Access to the WMCA funding was provided by Frontier Development Capital who continue to work closely with property developers and the WMCA to manage investments from the WMCA Commercial and Residential Investment Funds.

An alarming 60% of employees reportedly feel disengaged from their workplace – amidst companies struggling to form a post-pandemic work culture which is fit for a hybrid world.

According to findings from a Robert Walters poll, the UK is facing a ‘Disengagement Crisis’ with almost half of white-collar workers claiming that their workplace has become unrecognisable in the past 12 months – with high staff turnover (54%), less people coming into the office (49%), and a subsequent decline in team socials (43%) being the main drivers.

Below is a readout and quotes following the Prime Minister, Chancellor and Business Secretary’s roundtable with the electricity sector this morning.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “Countries around the world are feeling the impact of Putin’s damaging war in Ukraine. We know that this will be a difficult winter for people across the UK, which is why we are doing everything we can to support them and must continue to do so.

Two old school friends, who took on high-profile entrepreneurs in the Dragons’ Den twice, are setting their sights on a £500,000 sales return for their new eco-friendly solution to serving up sauce. Ian Worton and Peter Neath are confident that Saucestream is going to prove a big hit with green-minded consumers after it saw an initial spike in online and Amazon orders.