Chamber Patrons Chamber Patrons Greater Birmingham Chambers’ leading supporters

Redundancies at the NEC Group

The NEC Group has warned many of its employees could face redundancy after revenues fell to almost zero as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Birmingham-based

group – which has 829 full- time employees and operates the NEC, the Vox, and the Utilita and Resorts World Arenas and the ICC – announced it will be undertaking an organisational review which will result in job losses. The group says job cuts are

necessary “to ensure the longevity of the business”. Before the pandemic, the

NEC Group’s annual revenues were £160m but dropped to almost nothing between March and September, with events either being cancelled or postponed. The organisation

contributes £3bn to the West Midlands economy annually and also assisted efforts to combat coronavirus by allowing the NEC to be converted into an NHS Nightingale hospital rent free. A consultation process with

staff will begin on 12 October. A statement from the NEC

Group said: “Our business serves as a great economic driver in the West Midlands but Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on us. “In the absence of a sector

specific extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, difficult decisions need to be made. In October we will be formally entering a consultation process with our employees about a proposed restructuring. “It is with a heavy heart that

as a result of this, we will lose some truly dedicated colleagues and friends that work within the group.”

28 CHAMBERLINK October 2020

Julian Lloyd Webber has stepped down from his role as principal of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. The acclaimed music education

advocate, broadcaster and solo cellist will retain links with the Conservatoire and Birmingham City University as he has been awarded the prestigious status of Emeritus Professor. Professor Lloyd Webber’s

tenure, which started in July 2015, has included many notable achievements, including the appointment of the Conservatoire’s first Royal Patron in HRH, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, receiving the Royal Title from Her Majesty the Queen, and

overseeing the successful move to a new £57m state-of-the-art building at the heart of the Birmingham City University city centre campus. Other accomplishments

Honorary status: Professor Lloyd Webber will retain close links with Conservatoire

under his leadership include a merger with the School of Acting and attaining outstanding National Student Survey results year on year, with Music achieving the highest result of any UK

Contact: Henrietta Brealey T: 0121 274 3266

Lloyd Webber steps down from Conservatoire role

conservatoire in 2020 for the third successive year. Birmingham City University

vice-chancellor Professor Philip Plowden said: “We are a university with creative arts at our core and Professor Lloyd Webber has not only been passionate about achieving world-class quality in the Conservatoire, but also supporting and promoting its exceptional outreach work. “I am very pleased that he has

accepted the award of Emeritus Professor.” Professor Lloyd Webber said: “I

will always treasure the many happy memories of my time at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. I thank the university for the award of an Emeritus Professorship and wish the institution ongoing success.” Under Professor Lloyd Webber’s

leadership, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire has forged a partnership with international record company Naxos for a series of recordings featuring Conservatoire students, celebrated Junior Department student pianist Lauren Zhang win BBC Young Musician of the Year and awarded honorary doctorates to artist Laura Mvula and actor Daniel Day Lewis.

Midland Heart issues record bond

Housing association Midland Heart has issued its largest bond to market, bringing fresh investment to build more homes in the Midlands. The £250m, 30- year bond will yield a fixed return of 1.831 per cent back to investors. The bond issue has been assigned a sector leading

A1 debt rating, from credit rating agency Moody’s, considered a strong rating in banking and finance sectors. The capital raised from the bond’s issue will further support Midland Heart’s work to help fill the gap for the need of affordable housing in the UK. Midland Heart has ambitious development plans to

build 3,000 new homes by 2024 with 570 homes already completed, another 1,060 on site and 1,000 in the pipeline. Midland Heart chief executive Glenn Harris said:

“We’re extremely pleased to be issuing this bond with our strong A1 debt rating. This is testimony to the strong financial position Midland Heart is in and will help us to support the post Covid-19 economic recovery. This

Investment boost: Glenn Harris (left) hopes the bond issue will help Midland Heart’s work in addressing the affordable housing gap

increased investment will help to further improve the services that our customers rely on and to develop more affordable homes for those who need them.” The bond was arranged and placed by TradeRisks Ltd and Trowers and Hamlins provided the legal advice.

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