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Business Benefits From The Federation Of Small Businesses

4th July 2006

Photograph of Business Benefits From The Federation Of Small Businesses

Small businesses in Caithness and Sutherland are being encouraged to consider the benefits of becoming part of the largest organisation in the UK promoting and protecting the interests of the self-employed and owners of small firms.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), which is non-profit making and non-party political, has over 200,000 members UK wide, including the Caithness and Sutherland branch, which has over 200 members.

Winifred Sutherland, treasurer of the local branch, is on a drive to promote membership. According to Winifred, "When I started my own business nineteen years ago, joining the FSB was one of the most important decisions I took. The range of assistance available has steadily increased and now covers everything from preferential rates for insurance and banking to electronic point of sale equipment, telephones and Internet services. One of the key benefits is the access to a 24-hour legal help-line, which provides guidance on issues which often affect small businesses, such as employment law, commercial contracts, property and consumer affairs."

In addition, members get Internet access to a range of information and documents, including sample contracts of employment, legal case studies, tax, Vat information, etc. Members also receive a bi-monthly free national quality magazine devoted to business matters and a free bi-monthly regional newsletter giving full information on local issues.

Golspie-based James Harrison, proprietor of the Trawler Restaurant, said, "I was recommended to join the FSB by another local business and, given my own experiences, I'd have no hesitation in doing likewise. I joined purely to take advantage of the discounted services that are available on things like insurance, etc. I also made a big saving on electronic point of sale equipment for card transactions as the deal I got through the FSB made it a viable option."

Willie Bain, who runs Wick Engraving, said, "A friend suggested I join the FSB, and, given that I have already made a saving of over 150 my public liability insurance, it is certainly something I would recommend to every small business. I have also found the up-to-date info in the members' magazine very useful."

If you would like more information on the Federation of Small Businesses, contact Winifred on 07801 333455 or email winifredsutherland[AT]hotmail.com, or visit the FSB website at www.fsb.org.uk