BHETA merger ‘would allow association to thrive’

A BHETA merger with the BJGF would see increased benefits for members in a trade association with a secure and well-financed future.

BHETA merger ‘would allow association to thrive’

That is the message from British Home Enhancement Trade Association CEO David French in a statement released to members today.

BHETA’s plans to merge with the British Jewellery, Giftware & Finishing Federation have been thrown into disarray after some members voiced concerns over the move, forcing the association to call an extraordinary general meeting for July 23.

Last week, CAT Enterprises managing director Charles Harrison contacted BHETA housewares members, outlining his reasons for opposing the merger and saying that a new housewares association would be more financially sound than BHETA.

Now, BHETA has hit back, saying that the merger would place the association on “a firm financial footing that would see it thrive”.

The statement, issued by the BHETA Board and Housewares Committee members, says: “The decision to physically move BHETA and share resources with the BJGF at Federation House in Birmingham has not been undertaken lightly and the Board’s priority throughout has been focused on how to maintain and grow services for members, whilst putting the association on a firm financial footing that would see it thrive in the future.

“The opportunity to fundamentally alter the cost base of BHETA in order to free up more resources directly for the benefit of members was key in the merger gaining unanimous approval from the BHETA Board, and later the Housewares and DIY Committees and a majority vote in favour from the general membership.”

The statement goes on: “From July, following the formation of an umbrella organisation, the ‘Super Federation’, provisionally called the British Allied Trades Federation (Jewellery, Giftware, Home & Finishing) Ltd, BHETA will continue to operate as a standalone trade association with its current Board and committees in place but sharing administrative costs with other associations within the Super Federation.

“This change will allow BHETA to ensure that all its members benefit from greater networking opportunities, the provision of market data (which has not been possible before), enhanced buying power for tried and tested services and the opportunity to add their voices on industry-wide issues to others in the Super Federation, giving BHETA members a more powerful lobbying platform and stronger representation at government level.”

In the statement, David French says: “We are working hard to make this change as positive and beneficial to members as possible…we are absolutely convinced that the end result will see increased benefits for members in a trade association that has a stable, well-financed future with a team in place which is excited and positive about what they can offer members.”

In a message sent with the statement, BHETA president Andrew Weiss said: “It is appreciated that the change required by such a significant move is extensive but the Board are convinced that this move will set your association on a very constructive and positive path for future development.”

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