Businesses in Yorkshire strike Olympic gold

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As the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will draw to a spectacular end, the Yorkshire Gold Business Club’s (YGBC) work on the Games will be concluding with great success.

YGBC was launched in 2009 with its main objective being to help Yorkshire and Humber companies compete for contracts linked to the London 2012 Games. However the remit was expanded and YGBC started to work on other major public and private sector buying organisations projects, such as Crossrail and the Metropolitan Police.

During the three year duration, YGBC has received funding by the regional development agency Yorkshire Forward and has engaged with over 2000 businesses and delivered over 50 events. The projects current funding ceases on the 28th September 2012.

Yorkshire’s Olympic success has been in both sport and business. Yorkshire companies to win work include Leeds-based garment design and import company Cohen and Wilks International (CWI) who supplied children’s clothing for under-fives. Actaccomm, a Mirfield-based company, won three contracts to deliver modular office and welfare accommodation buildings to the Olympic Park.

More than 200 Yorkshire businesses have been awarded contracts related to the Games. Every building on the Olympic park is using timber provided by Sheffield firm Arnold Laver. Winning London 2012 contracts has helped safeguard and create jobs in the region in a tough economic climate.

A highlight of the project was a trip to the Olympic Park in 2009 where Yorkshire businesses were given a tour of the Park as well as a fantastic opportunity to meet key buyers including Carillion and Balfour Beatty.

YGBC events have provided a platform to engage with businesses across the region. YGBC provided information on the procurement process and how companies could get involved. Key events have included speakers such as Lord Sebastian Coe, Dame Kelly Holmes, Paul Deighton and John Armitt.

YGBC have also engaged with the world’s best athletes including US Olympic Divers and the Olympic Brazilian Judo Team. Yorkshire is the proud home to a number of Team GB’s elite athletes including Gold medal winner Boxer Nicola Adams who presented at a YGBC event last year.

The event was one of many which built on the relationship between sport and business in the lead up to the London 2012 Games.

The Legacy of the Games has given renewed hope for the future and UK companies can use the contracts secured from them as a platform for winning national and international projects for years, and indeed generations, to come. YGBC believe that the London 2012 Games has left a lasting economic legacy on the Yorkshire and Humber Region.

Project Manager, Lauren Pigg and PR Executive, Claire McMahon have worked on YGBC from day one and are seeing the project through to the very end. They look forward to a fresh challenge when they take on their new appointments in different organisations.

Mark O’Reilly, Director of Square 5 Ltd who currently project manage YGBC will continue the Business Club post September under a private funded model and has high hopes for the future.

Lauren Pigg, Manager of the Yorkshire Gold Business Club said:

“From creating the bus used in the handover ceremony in Beijing to manufacturing the Olympic Cauldron; Yorkshire and Humber companies have been involved from the very start and have been part of the construction of every venue on the Olympic park. An achievement as a region we are extremely proud of.”