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Thinking globally, thriving locally

West Brattleboro businesses invited to discuss economic development ideas

WEST BRATTLEBORO—Preliminary numbers — from, okay, a small group — show that the majority of enterprises located in West Brattleboro (“West B”) receive the bulk of their business from the global market.

Not bad for an area west of Interstate 91, south of the West River, and north of Omega Optical.

In other words, it’s an area that contain at least 207 businesses, according to West Brattleboro Association President Michael Bosworth.

As of Feb. 12, preliminary data gathered from 30 businesses through an online survey by the WBA show that nine businesses, or 30 percent of respondents, have a global market for their products or services.

“Global” had the most responses, followed by eight businesses claiming a reach into the tri-county area — Windham County, Franklin County in Massachusetts, and Cheshire County in New Hampshire — and six businesses reaching within New England.

Only one business answered “within Brattleboro.”

Local economic development organizations and West Brattleboro businesses will discuss business and economic development ideas on Monday, Feb. 23, starting at 5 p.m.

All West B businesses are welcomed.

Representatives from Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation, Brattleboro Area Chamber of Commerce, Windham Regional Commission, the town of Brattleboro, and the state legislative delegation are slated to attend the event at 55 Marlboro Rd.

Bosworth wrote in an email that each business self-selected its category when entering data for the Brattleboro business directory.

For the businesses in West B, nearly 45 percent described themselves as professional services. Retail and the arts came in second and third, at over 30 percent and 25 percent, respectively.

Other business categories included agriculture, health care, wholesale, restaurants, and child care.

When asked how local economic development organizations can most help businesses, most of the responding businesses selected “market and promote the town or region.”

“Offering loans and skill training” also topped the list.

This meeting, originally scheduled Feb. 9, was postponed due to snow.

The building at 55 Marlboro Rd. is the long structure with Central Appliance at its right corner. Visitors should use the central front door and head to the back central conference room.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #293 (Wednesday, February 18, 2015). This story appeared on page A1.

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