Small businesses in the area have a massive opportunity to win work from the automotive and public sectors.

That was the message that came from the Peterlee Business Park supply chain opportunities themed event, which attracted 50 people from companies and organisations across the North East, including our Operations Director Ben Gilhespy and CDEMN members Jackson Hogg Recruitment and Mecaplast.

The audience, at East Durham College, heard from Paul Butler at the North East Automotive Alliance who spoke about the opportunities for businesses to bid for work from Tier 1 employers in a variety of areas.

They also heard from Guy Bashford, from Business Durham’s Durham Business Opportunities Programme, who outlined some of the current contracts being procured by Durham County Council and urged SMEs to capitalise on these by bidding for projects which fit with their skills set.

Other speakers included Ricardo Gutierrez from Mecaplast, who is the Peterlee-based automotive supplier’s Purchasing Manager; Ian Murphy from Profound Group, who spoke about his employer’s experience of bidding for and winning a big contract from the local authority; and Garry Stone from B2B North, who is a bid writing expert.

Ben said: “It was a very interesting event which demonstrated just how many opportunities there are for our SMEs to win work from the public sector and the region’s big automotive manufacturers.”