Featuring Green Tech: The Future Economy Group

As part of our “Featuring Green Tech” initiative, we like to increase the awareness of local “disruptive” green technology businesses.

In this context, we caught up with The Future Economy Network, (as part of The Future Economy Group): an Events & Communications service, focusing on delivering sustainability-related events and networking opportunities whilst providing an invaluable mechanism for strategic communication.

ADLIB: For some background information, who is The Future Economy Group and what makes your business offering unique?

The Future Economy Network: The Future Economy Group serve the SouthWest by giving organisations the tools to become more sustainable.

We do this through our events company The Future Economy Network, who run weekly sustainability events. Their communication channels deliver sustainability-related news within our large network of 12,000. Alongside our events, we offer consultancy and green-tech products to give businesses an encompassing look at sustainability. We are also building a sustainability hub on Gloucester road, which will be home to all our services.

ADLIB: Can you summarise the fantastic work that Future Economy Group do in Bristol?

The Future Economy Network: As of January, we’ve been transforming the old Maplins on Gloucester road into a sustainability hub. The space will comprise a co-working area for ethical start-ups, a large retail area stocking green-tech products and an events space for the network. There are also plans to build a mini coffee bar and a garden!

We have also launched our Festival of Sustainable Business; the largest single day of celebrating environmental business in the South West region! The Future Economy Group is involved in supporting almost every major initiative and sustainable business project in the Bristol Region making a huge impact in the transition to a low carbon economy.

ADLIB: The new sustainability hub on Gloucester Road looks very exciting, how’s the build going and can you tell us what the aims of the hub are?

The Future Economy Network: It’s really fascinating. The building dates back to the 1930s and is art deco in style. Each day there are surprises, like when we took down the signage, we found these stylishly striped blinds. We love the original features of the building, especially the beautiful brickwork that we’ve uncovered, (this has also been one of the highlights). We have committed to being carbon neutral in our operations with the intention of sharing this learning with our Network and of course, minimising our own environmental impact.

The aim of the hub will be to give any person, business or organisation, who is interested in becoming more sustainable, the tools to do so. Whether this is attending our events, purchasing a product to save energy, starting a green business or simply learning from our space. We want the space to be as interactive as possible.

The Sustainable Business Hub will give our fast-growing sector a focus for activity, with it being a hub for environmental knowledge, collaboration, innovation and market entry for cutting edge products and services. This will be the single most important piece of infrastructure for the sector within the region.

ADLIB: We see that you’re organising a Festival Of Sustainable Business in September, can you tell us more about that?

The Future Economy Network: Yes, on the 17th of September, save the date! The Festival of Sustainable Business will be the largest single day of celebrating environmental business in the South West region!

The Festival comprises a free exhibition with over 60 exhibitors at We The Curious, 10 seminars, a gala dinner, and a huge amount of networking opportunities, helping businesses in the region to focus on business development opportunities or reducing their environmental impact. The Festival is all about celebrating the best that the sector and region have to offer and drive the sustainable economic growth agenda!

ADLIB: Can you tell us of any exciting green tech businesses that you’re working with?

The Future Economy Network: You will have to come and visit our hub! We’re hoping to be open by Mid-May and all the products will be showcased! There really are too many to mention just one, but there will be lots of excitement and surprises.

ADLIB: From your perspective, what can businesses be doing to make themselves sustainable and reduce their impact on the environment?

The Future Economy Network: There are lots of little things that make a huge difference, and you don’t have to be a decision-maker in your business to spark that change! You just have to be bold enough to bring it up in a meeting and start putting the changes into practice. Switch to a renewable energy provider, implement a recycling system, make sure everyone’s using reusable coffee cups and water bottles, bring in some plants to improve the air quality, encourage active travel!

Of course one of the best ways is to subscribe to The Future Economy Network, attend our events and Festival and pop into our hub (once we are open) to see what products can help improve your business’s impact on the environment. The good news is that most environmentally sound practices you put in place…also, save you money!

We take our environmental responsibilities seriously, we get involved, we feature, support and champion Green Tech businesses, those that disrupt and are on a similar journey. Please get in touch should you like to find out more or if you are on a similar mission, we’d love to collaborate to make a real difference.

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