The latest Your Voice feature, giving LBV members a platform for their views on the current business landscape in Leicester.
Communication strategy consultancy 1284 was founded in the summer of 2020 by former Leicester Mercury editor George Oliver. It is based at Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP) and operates between the university campus and Leicester.
How would you describe what your business does?
We provide corporate communications strategy for people who lead change. Broadly speaking, we offer media relations, PR and stakeholder engagement. Our clients range from graduate start-ups, through innovative SMEs, to public organisations.
What are the biggest opportunities for your business?
My work moves me between Leicester and Loughborough and there are significant strategic opportunities in both areas over the coming 15-20 years. The freeport will be an asset alongside the county’s existing transport connections and its three universities. There’s a growing appetite for innovation and 1284 specialises in that.
What are the biggest challenges for your business?
The main focus currently is sustainable scaling. After 12 months of intermittent lockdowns, 1284 reached the stage where it was ready to grow. I was able to invite some strong associates to get involved. It was important to me that the people who came in not only supplemented my skills but also shared my values and broadened my thinking.
What would you identify as the key strengths of Leicester?
Community. Effective public, private and third sector leadership. Location. Resilience.
What are the top three ways in which Leicester can develop to support the business community?
1. Support local organisations and providers where possible.
2. Refer others to those local organisations where possible.
3. Remember how much the city has to offer – and promote it.
Why is LBV important to you and your business?
Pretty much all of my work arrives through word-of-mouth referrals from people who are active in the city’s business community. I was aware of LBV and – looking at its member list – realised that I knew many of those involved. It made sense to have another forum from which to communicate with them.