Booming firms pledge to boost the borough

A family-owned commercial insurance broker has signed up to a project which encourages local firms to take practical steps to help South Tyneside develop and thrive.

Cllr Margaret Meling, centre, with, from left, Far North's Mischa Steele; Adam Brown and Kevin Pritchard of The Health Insurance Group, and Shaun Darcy, Elite Marketing and Sales.
Cllr Margaret Meling, centre, with, from left, Far North's Mischa Steele; Adam Brown and Kevin Pritchard of The Health Insurance Group, and Shaun Darcy, Elite Marketing and Sales.
Cllr Margaret Meling, centre, with, from left, Far North's Mischa Steele; Adam Brown and Kevin Pritchard of The Health Insurance Group, and Shaun Darcy, Elite Marketing and Sales.

The Health Insurance Group, based at One Trinity Green in South Shields, has joined the South Tyneside Pledge – where firms commit to increase their procurement spending in the borough, work where possible with other local firms, hire more South Tyneside residents, advertise jobs locally and provide job opportunities, apprenticeships or career guidance.

The Health Insurance Group was set up in 1992 and specialises in private medical insurance, employee benefits, income protection, critical illness and employee assistance programmes.

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Business is booming after it joined forces with two other local firms – telemarketing company Elite Branding and Sales, and marketing firm Far North.

Since the three businesses came together, the conversion rate of new clients has doubled and The Health Insurance Group now sees 10% of clients within a 15-mile radius of South Tyneside.

Kelvin Pritchard, business development manager at The Health Insurance Group, said: “We get a lot out of South Tyneside and thought it was about time we gave something back so we signed up to the South Tyneside Pledge. It was a no-brainer.

"Since collaborating with Elite and Far North, we have seen dramatic growth across all three businesses and couldn't be more pleased with the response after partnering with two local firms.”

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Elite Branding & Sales has recently expanded into bigger office space at One Trinity Green, has recruited two marketing executives and it looking to recruit a further five local employees.

Far North now handles the marketing and website for the group.

Mischa Steele, Project Manager at Far North, said: “We are proud to work globally to help organisations grow and find new clients, but there’s nothing better than being able to work with likeminded businesses on our doorstep.

"One of the pillars of the South Tyneside Pledge is to Spend South Tyneside and this is a perfect example of this commitment from local businesses.”

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Cllr Margaret Meling, South Tyneside Council’s lead member for economic growth and skills, said: "It's fantastic to see businesses come together and support one another as well as sticking to their roots and helping drive forward growth within the region.”