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As a company, we have been based in Bristol (and Pontypridd Wales) for over 15 years. Bristol as a city has grown significantly in that time and is one that I think is going to be an important location in the future. Evidence supports this idea with the introduction for example of the electrification of the railway network through to Bristol (and also extending through to Wales after that). If the reflection of house prices in Bristol are any sign of the developing importance of the city as a hub, Bristol is a great place to be based.

What makes Bristol a Good Location?

Strategically in a geographical and locational sense, Bristol is a beautifully positioned city given that it is based at the entrance to south-west England (Devon, Cornwall and Somerset), within touching distance of south Wales (just across the bridge) and only 2 hours from London by train. With its international airport and connected nationwide via the M4 motorway, it is not hard to see why so many businesses are choosing Bristol as a base.

Airbus, Mathew Clark Wholesale, Mitie, Kerry Ingredients UK, RSJ International, ALD Automotive and Nisbets UK. For those of you looking to specialise in international trade involving the need to export and/or import freight, Bristol works very well for multi-modal forms of freight with strong rail, road, air and connected sea freight options. As an exporter, Bristol can be a perfect location in which to be based.

Business Networking Opportunities in Bristol

There are a number of options open to you if you want to network specifically within the Bristol and surrounding area. A number of groups have sprung up in the last few years as more entrepreneurs and business people have made Bristol their home.  Some resources I can personally recommend include the following:

  • Business South West – This is very much a networking intended group and the breakfast networking events can be a great way to start the day on a positive note. You tend to meet all sorts of people at these events, from those starting off in business through to some established and prominent business people.
  • Bristol Brainstorm – is a meet-up group with over 600 members and who meet on average once a month for a business brain storming session.
  • The Bristol Business and Opportunity Seekers – group is another meet-up group and who meet on the third Monday of each month. From my experience there are normally between 30 and 40 people at each event and this is perhaps one of the best options for networking in Bristol. I have made some wonderful contacts at this event and highly recommend it.

Getting Started in the Imports and Exports Business

There are a number of wonderful resources online and below are some of the best, suffice to say of course, in terms of freight then we here at RSJ International welcome all enquiries and provide free quotes.

  • Alibaba – if you are looking to make connections with partners for the Asian market, the biggest and best directory is Alibaba. This is a well-established market place for importers and exporters worldwide with Asia.
  • For Freight, RSJ International Freight – call us on:  0117 932 6572
  • CIPE – The Centre for International Private Enterprises is an excellent organisation if you are starting your own business in Bristol and need guidance. (More from CIPE)
  • CBI – The CBI work and develop partnerships for almost 50 countries worldwide which are considered developing nations. The CBI are a wonderful source of information and guidance on trade, import and trade opportunities.  (Learn more)
  • Business Innovations – The UK government website dedicated to innovation and skills is yet one more wonderful great free resource online for starting a business in Bristol (or other part of the UK). Useful for keeping up to date on UK business.