02 Apr 2014
Now here's an opportunity to help grow a Chamber member company.
Last year at the Glasgow Business Awards, Plan Bee won the Green Champion section which Scottish Power sponsored. I suspect most of you are aware that the bee population is worryingly in decline. Of all people, it was Vince Cable asking questions about bees in Parliament that made me aware of the issue four years ago. But in Warren Bader, the entrepreneur behind Plan Bee, we have our very own practical champion of the humble honeybee here in Glasgow.
I first came across Plan Bee when Gillian Dick of Find Me Glasgow presented me with a jar of the company's honey. Great honey it was too - enjoyed by all the family. But whilst the honey is of course important, Plan Bee is so much more than simply another food company. It's a company that puts the desire to contribute to society right at the heart of its model. Plan Bee is a very different way to take corporate social responsibility seriously and with a swift and direct impact on the environment.
Plan Bee offers the opportunity to adopt your own bee hives. You can site them - with Plan Bee's advice - wherever you think best for your business and Plan Bee will look after them on your behalf. Of course you get the honey but you also have an opportunity to promote your business, demonstrate your commitment to a sustainable environment and make a genuine practical contribution to the protection of the bee population. And the hives don't always need to be out in the countryside. It's perfectly feasible to have hives on the city centre rooftops. Two Fat Ladies Restaurant have two beehives fully branded and sitting on the roof of the Buttery in Argyle Street.
Have a look at Plan Bee's website and you'll see some of the businesses already involved and some of the situations where bee hives can also be part of a management plan. Golf courses where the bees will support the growth of wildflowers, farming where bees can actually help increase some crop yields and property developers demonstrating community benefits in the planning process. But the adoption of bee hives is open to every business. You can adopt hives, place them in a local community relevant to your corporate social responsibility objectives and let Plan Bee do all the hard work maintaining them.
Now though Warren is taking Plan Bee to the next stage in its business model. He launched the Plan Bee crowdfunding project on April 1 to raise investment resources to grow the business.
The Chamber, as you may know, is a keen supporter, of crowdfunding. We supported the first ever Scottish study into it by Tim Wright of twintangibles and we launched that report last year. We want to see crowdfunding grow as a funding option where it works for the business. Plan Bee is an ideal candidate. It has an ethical purpose that many will support, it has a range of product that can become part of the dividend from investment and it has lots of scope for encouraging that sense of being part of an important community that so much crowdfunding depends upon.
Take the time to check out the Plan Bee crowdfunding options. You might want to join in.