An organisation set up by Black Country Chamber of Commerce -and part-funded by regional development agency Advantage West Midlands to support the area's professional and financial sector - has celebrated its first six months by passing the 100 member mark.
Alliance 4 The Black Country was established to bring together those within this growing and increasingly important sector to network, share best practice and encourage long-term business relationships.
The membership and the event delegates get to vote on which subjects and topics they would like to find out more about next.
Katie Martin, Alliance coordinator at Black Country Chamber, said: "Recruiting more than a hundred corporate members in such as short space of time is a great achievement and we are confident of getting a hundred more before the year is out.
"There was a real need for an organisation like this, which has been proven by the membership numbers and the high turnout at our events.
"There is still an out-dated perception of the Black Country that it is home to just metal bashers and foundries but this is definitely not the case. "There is an increasing number of professional services firms cropping up all over the area and they need support in order to grow and be successful and that's where we come in."
An ongoing campaign for the group is the graduate and talent retention within the Black Country. Katie added: "The 'brain drain' is something affecting the whole of the West Midlands. Youngsters come and study in our universities and colleges, graduate then move away. In the Black Country, we almost get hit twice because the talent that doesn't head off to London are enticed to Birmingham."..SUPL: