After 11 years in post, Hamish Fraser, the Federation of Small Businesses’ Chairman for the Highlands & Islands Regional Committee, decided to step down at its recent AGM and the helm was passed to Amanda Frazer, Chair of the Badenoch & Strathspey Branch.
Hamish Fraser said: “In my time as Regional Chair I have seen many changes as the organisation has grown and evolved and we have achieved much. However, our purpose remains the same as ever: to provide a voice and practical help for small, independent businesses in a world that is all too frequently dominated by the big boys
“The FSB’s great strengths are its size (we are the biggest business lobbying organisation in the UK); our independence (no public sector memberships or contracts to influence our views); our ability to support our arguments by producing hard evidence and case studies from members; and last, but certainly not least, the fact that we are run by members for members.
“I am delighted to pass the baton on to Amanda in the full knowledge that she understands the needs of small businesses and will work tirelessly on their behalf”
Amanda Frazer said: “I was delighted to accept the role of Regional Chair, though I know that Hamish will be a very hard act to follow.
“98% of Scotland’s 300,000 businesses have less than 50 employees and 94% have fewer than 10. Small businesses are vitally important to this country’s wellbeing and giving them a strong voice and influencing governments and others at all levels is what the FSB exists to do. Moreover, our great size means that we can negotiate some fantastic deals for our members, ranging from legal, financial and tax advice to free business banking with the Cooperative Bank and special deals on pensions and health care.
“We may already be by far the biggest business organisation in Britain – and the Highlands & Islands – but the more members we have the louder our voice and the more we are listened to by politicians. One of my key aims is therefore to maintain Hamish’s work in growing the membership by ensuring that the Highlands & Islands Region continues to lobby on our members’ behalf on the issues that matter; that it continues to keep them up to date with the latest developments and opportunities; and that it continues to organise networking and other events.”
Pictured are Amanda Frazer and Hamish Fraser