Renfrewshire Chamber today (Fri 15.2.13) held a cross party Independence Debate, hosted by STV’s anchor man John MacKay. The 100+ attendees packed into the lecture theatre at Reid Kerr College’s

Abercorn Conference Centre in Paisley to question the political panel that included:

-Derek MacKay MSP – SNP
-Annabel Goldie MSP – Conservative
-Garry Clark – Scottish Chambers of Commerce
-Douglas Alexander MP – Labour
-Councillor Eileen McCartin – Liberal Democrats

Intependence Debate

The panel were asked questions on a wide range of topics including:

-Is Independence good for business?
-Why is there so much focus on this subject when the economy is struggling?
-Will we be better off in an independent Scotland?
-Plus many more questions on the EU, embassies, NATO etc….

In addition to business people, teachers and pupils from 3 Renfrewshire High Schools attended; Renfrew, Linwood and Gleniffer. Questions asked by the young people included:

-What impact will Independence have on the future of young people in Scotland?
-Should 16 yr olds have a vote on Independence?

chamber logo 2012 writingThe panel and audience were well behaved in what can be an emotive subject. John MacKay ensured all the panel had their fair share of air time allowing them the chance to respond to the many questions.

Chamber president Tom Johnston commented  “…this debate has been in the planning for a long time. It is not easy to get such a high profile panel all in the one place at the same time. The Chamber was delighted with the turnout today of over 100 members – and also great to see so many young people attending and taking a genuine interest in their future. We plan to have a follow up debate in 2014 – by then more information, facts & figures will be available”.

This event was a free event for Renfrewshire Chamber members – to find out more about the Chamber visit

Scotland’s top civil servant visits Renfrewshire Chamber

The permanent secretary for the Scottish Government, Sir Peter Housden today met with the Board of Directors from Renfrewshire Chamber at the Chamber offices in Glasgow Airport in Paisley. During the 2 hour meeting Sir Peter learned a great deal about how Renfrewshire Chamber is helping local businesses grow and prosper.

sir peter2

Commenting on the meeting Chamber chief exec’ Bob Davidson said “Sir Peter came across as a very knowledgeable and approachable person; this was very encouraging to see. Going by the responses to questions and the notes he took – he was impressed by the breadth and depth of activity in Renfrewshire. We certainly flew the flag for Renfrewshire as a great place for business and an area that could do more with additional support by from the government – including Air Passenger Duty, youth unemployment and business rates. Additional topics of discussion included procurement, international trade, access to finance and connectivity.

The Chamber regularly has meetings with senior figures from the private and public sector – most recently welcoming John Longworth the Director General of British Chamber in late 2012.

For more info on Renfrewshire Chamber please visit their website at

renfrewshire chamber

A New Year, a New Start….offer extended
Renfrewshire Chamber is offering local businesses a great start to 2013 with 25% off membership – now extended to the end of February. The Paisley based Chamber is almost 600 members in size and has won several awards in the last year including:

  • renfrewshire chamberInvestors in People Silver
  • UK Chamber of the Year Runner up 2012 ( & 2011)
  • Renfrewshire Council Quality Awards finalist 2012


Commenting on the opportunity, Chamber chief executive Bob Davidson said “our new member  offer is always very popular, allowing businesses of all sizes and sectors the chance to join the areas main business organisation and save money”.


The Chamber provides companies with access to a wide range of products & services designed to help them grow & prosper, including:

  • Networking events – lunches, forums, business breakfasts & seminars
  • Marketing channels – magazine, eNews, app, website & social media
  • Chamber HR & Legal, Health, Finance and Merchant Services
  • The ROCCOs – annual business awards
  • Meeting Rooms
  • Export Documentation
  • Business Mentoring
  • Graduate Recruitment Incentive


New members also get to attend their 1st networking lunch for free. To take advantage of this offer please visit or call Bob Grant, Membership Manager on  0141 847 5455


Graduate Career Zone & Recruitment Workshop – Paisley

Renfrewshire Chamber, who deliver the Graduate Recruitment Incentive, (a wage subsidy of £3k to companies that recruit a recent graduate into a new position) is holding a free Graduate Career Zone Workshop to bring graduates and potential employers together. Graduates will be able to access the latest thinking in how to secure that ideal job, including:

·         How to prepare your CV & cover letter to make you stand out from the crowd.

·         How to prepare for different formats of interview, e.g. competency based interview techniques.

·         How to network and find positions that aren’t advertised.

graduateSMEs will discover how to find the best young talent for their organisation and: 

·         Register for free access to our unique online recruitment support program.

·         How and where to advertise to attract the best graduate candidates.

·         How to prepare a job spec.

·         How to sift & match CV’s.

·         How to structure your interview questions.

Following the workshops there will be the opportunity to network between local companies and potential candidates in an informal setting. A light buffet & refreshments will be provided.

Graduates and employers from all over Scotland are welcome.

The event will be held at UWS Paisley Campus, P Block on Thursday 28th February 5PM-7PM (parking available via Lady Lane entrance)

To register your free place please email Bob Grant, Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce on or tel. 0141 847 5455

business doctor

FREE Business Health Surgery

Every business understands the importance of the constant need to change, whether it be sales, marketing, people, financial or operations. Business Doctors, in association with Renfrewshire Chamber, will be hosting complimentary Business Health Surgeries on Tuesday 26th February and Tuesday 5th March in the Chamber Offices at Glasgow Airport.

business doctorThe surgery will be held between 9am and 4pm when businesses will receive a free 45 minute one to one session with Business Doctor, Gordon Barraclough. The consultation will provide a sounding board to discuss the key challenges and opportunities that currently exist in your business. Business owners who exhibit high levels of entrepreneurial spirit and ambition will benefit most from these sessions, whether striving to achieve sustainability or moving the business up to the next level.


To book a place please visit the events section of or contact Gordon direct on 07803 586180 /

graduate recruitment initiative

Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce

Chamber delivers new pilot to encourage SME growth – The Graduate Recruitment Incentive

Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce has been chosen as one of 4 Scottish Chamber areas for a new Scottish Government pilot taking place between Sep 2012 & March 2013, aimed at encouraging small, local businesses to employ a graduate. (Other areas include Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Dumfries & Galloway). The Graduate Recruitment Incentive (GRI) is a payment of at least £3,000, available for employers that successfully employing a graduate into a new, permanent position.

graduate recruitment initiative Commenting on the new initiative Chamber Chief Exec’ Bob Davidson said “…. for companies based in Renfrewshire of 50 staff or less, this incentive of at least £3000 allows local businesses to grow by employing a graduate. We hope this incentive will encourage organisations from all sectors to create a new position for a graduate and help move their company forward. Combining this with the new Invest in Renfrewshire programme from Renfrewshire Council – there is great support available to reduce youth unemployment and grow the local economy”.

For information on the GRI please visit or call Bob Grant on 0141 847 5455