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Breakfast club is bringing home the bacon!

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Screen Shot 2016-04-13 at 12.56.59IT’S BEEN described as the business breakfast club that really brings home the bacon.

To prove it, this small and creative local business group earned more than £400,000 in additional revenue for its members last year.

Now the Business Network International (BNI) Chapter in Llanelli has its sights set on bigger targets and is looking for new members.

The busy Thursday morning club meets at The Diplomat Hotel in Llanelli.

It’s an early 7am start – but these are men and women who are keen to make the most of their working days.

“Meeting first thing in the morning is great,” said Llanelli chapter (local branch) spokesman Phil Evans.

“We all have busy days and meeting first thing in the morning means that it doesn’t intrude into the rest of the working day.

“It also means that we start the day energised as there’s a lot of energy and enthusiasm in our meetings, the meetings really have a buzz.

“It’s a place where networking can really pay dividends and it’s a place where people appreciate exchanging ideas and information. Our members also appreciate that we are a great support network. We are there for each other.”

It is estimated that each seat around the Llanelli BNI breakfast table is worth £12,000 in extra referral business.

The key to this is in the makeup of the BNI membership. No two businesses in the BNI are allowed to be in the same category, so you get a mix, which can be as varied as the proverbial butcher, baker and candlestick maker.

In Llanelli, the membership includes a plasterer, an office supplies manager, carpenter, locksmith, accountant, painter and decorator, electrician, plumber, builder, IT support consultant and a roofer.

Two of the latest recruits are Andrew Glen, of John Glen Garage Doors in Gorseinon, and Robin Rees, of Rees Roofing in Llanelli. “It really is a great mix,” said Mr Evans.

As well as the networking and the support BNI provides, the meeting also enables members to pass business referrals to each other, which can vary from firm orders from one business to the next or an introduction to a potential client.

In short, the message is, “help others to help yourselve’s”.

The business between the BNI members is monitored and in money terms we know that the BNI members have done more than £400,000 worth of business during 2015.

In addition, we have regular training sessions and guest speakers. So, we are able to combine an entertaining way of business networking with some innovative ways of making sure we stay on top of our businesses in these challenging and changing economic times.

“The BNI experience is different to other networking organisations, but we are very open and accessible and would be delighted to welcome potential members who just want to come along on a Thursday and see what we are about.

“Our growing chapter has referrals for a photographer and an event’s organiser. If you know of a business that is looking to grow and can handle more work, we would like to meet them. Please spread the word.” You can contact Phil Evans on 01269 591133.

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Cllr Kevin Madge elected as new county council Chairman

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THE new chair of Carmarthenshire County Council said he will work tirelessly during his term of office.

Cllr Kevin Madge, member for Garnant, takes the chain of office whilst celebrating 40 years as a councillor.

Taking the chair, Cllr Madge paid tribute to outgoing chairman Cllr Mansel Charles, member for Llanegwad, saying he had fulfilled his duties with passion.

Cllr Madge will chair the council for the next 12 months, with Cllr Ieuan Davies, member for Llanybydder, as his vice chair, and his wife Catrin as his consort.

“I’m very much looking forward to the year ahead, I will do my best for everyone. I will work tirelessly,” he said.

Cllr Madge has chosen the Trussell Trust, which supports a nationwide network of food banks and emergency food provision for people in crisis, as his Chairman’s Charity of the Year.

The Chair is the first citizen of Carmarthenshire County Council, and is elected at the Annual General Meeting.

Duties include chairing full meetings of the council, representing the council at formal and ceremonial occasions, welcoming visitors to the county, and attending and supporting events organised by local people and organisations.

Cllr Madge has been a county councillor since 1996, and a member of Cwmaman Town Council since 1979.

He also serves as chairman of the Royal British Legion Garnant branch, Garnant Family Centre and Cwmaman Meals on Wheels, and is a member of Amman Valley League of Friends.

He represents the county council on the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, and the Mynydd y Betws Wind Farm Community Fund, and is on the governing body of Ysgol Y Bedol.

A former pupil of Amman Valley School, Cllr Madge has worked in the Amman Valley throughout his life, most recently as agent and researcher to Dr Alan Williams MP until 2001.

A keen football supporter, he has served as chair and president of Cwmaman Football Club and spent 25 years as a Welsh League and Neath and District football referee.

He is married with two children and three grandchildren.

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‘UK Government should work with the Welsh Labour Government on Tata’

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LOCAL Assembly Member Lee Waters and Nia Griffith MP have called on the UK Government to work with the Welsh Labour Government to come up with a deal to protect steel making at Trostre, and across Wales and the UK.

Lee Waters AM met with representatives from Tata Steel on Wednesday to discuss the future for steel making at the plant following the reported collapse of the proposed joint venture with Thyssenkrupp.

During the meeting he stressed the need to protect the entire steel supply chain in Wales, including the high quality jobs at Trostre, and those that depend on its presence in Llanelli.

Lee Waters AM said “It’s clear that the support Welsh Government provided during the crisis of 2016 has been critical in getting extra investment into Port Talbot which will secure the works for years to come. However, Tata is a company run from India, and we simply don’t know what the board will decide about its future strategy. They may well be looking for a new joint venture partner, so we’ll have to vigilant about the implications for our local plants.”

“Tata has said it intends to continue with its existing business plan, and honor commitments made to the Trade Unions, so Nia and I will be keeping a close eye to make sure that happens.”

Welsh Government has been in active discussions with Tata steel following the collapse of the merger with Thyssenkrupp. In a written statement and during questions on Wednesday, the Welsh Government committed to invest in Welsh steel to protect its future and is looking at a range of measures to assist on energy costs, business rates and procurement of steel for public sector contracts.

Lee Waters AM said “The Welsh Government have given significant support to the steel industry here but it can’t do everything, and we now need the UK Government to work with them to ensure a future for skilled work in the steel industry in Llanelli and elsewhere in Wales.”

Nia Griffith AM said ““This latest news from Tata means yet more uncertainty for steelworkers. Their announcement about keeping Port Talbot is a start, but now we need real commitment from Tata on Trostre.

“We also need close cooperation from the company with the Trade Unions. Lee Waters AM and I will be urging the UK Government to follow Welsh Government in doing everything possible to secure the future of our steel industry.”

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MP and AM call for Trostre certainty after merger fails

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LOCAL ASSEMBLY MEMBER Lee Waters and Nia Griffith MP have called on the UK Government to work with the Welsh Labour Government to come up with a deal to protect steel making at Trostre, and across Wales and the UK.

Lee Waters AM met with representatives from Tata Steel on Wednesday to discuss the future for steel making at the plant following the reported collapse of the proposed joint venture with Thyssenkrupp.

During the meeting he stressed the need to protect the entire steel supply chain in Wales, including the high quality jobs at Trostre, and those that depend on its presence in Llanelli.

Lee Waters AM said “It’s clear that the support Welsh Government provided during the crisis of 2016 has been critical in getting extra investment into Port Talbot which will secure the works for years to come. However, Tata is a company run from India, and we simply don’t know what the board will decide about its future strategy. They may well be looking for a new joint venture partner, so we’ll have to vigilant about the implications for our local plants.”

“Tata has said it intends to continue with its existing business plan, and honor commitments made to the Trade Unions, so Nia and I will be keeping a close eye to make sure that happens.”

Welsh Government has been in active discussions with Tata steel following the collapse of the merger with Thyssenkrupp. In a written statement and during questions on Wednesday, the Welsh Government committed to invest in Welsh steel to protect its future and is looking at a range of measures to assist on energy costs, business rates and procurement of steel for public sector contracts.

Lee Waters AM said “The Welsh Government have given significant support to the steel industry here but it can’t do everything, and we now need the UK Government to work with them to ensure a future for skilled work in the steel industry in Llanelli and elsewhere in Wales.”

Nia Griffith AM said “This latest news from Tata means yet more uncertainty for steelworkers. Their announcement about keeping Port Talbot is a start, but now we need real commitment from Tata on Trostre.

“We also need close cooperation from the company with the Trade Unions. Lee Waters AM and I will be urging the UK Government to follow Welsh Government in doing everything possible to secure the future of our steel industry.”

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