Network Review – The Platinum Club
Date: 22 June 2018
Emma Pearce gives an insight into a fully hosted professional networking club for people that don’t like networking!
By Emma Pearce, Marketing Consultant – marketing planning, outsourced marketing services and social media training
(as published in Platinum Business Magazine)
Read on if you are looking for a B2B networking group for senior players with a cocktail party vibe. You won’t experience any formulaic seated meals, one minute pitches or speakers. But there will be business leaders who value building long-term relationships, along with hosts to introduce you to each other.
This unique format has proved successful since The Platinum Club launched in 2010. In fact the club has never had a member resign their membership. So with a cap of four members per business sector, there can be a wait list. But some spaces are available.
Maarten Hoffman, MD of The Platinum Group and founder of the club, said “we host a highly enjoyable cocktail party with senior business leaders from some of the largest companies and organisations in the South East, along with an array of smaller businesses with a niche product or service. In many instances, this is the only networking event that a number of our members ever attend. As well as making valuable contacts, it’s a hive of inside information about what’s going on in the region.”
When I attended the event, the Champagne was flowing and The Grand Hotel team passed around delicious canapés (all included in the membership). This Brighton-based event certainly felt like a relaxed gathering where everyone was happy to chat.
So what does fully hosted mean?
Maarten and two colleagues, Ian Trevett and Lesley Alcock, host the event. They are also from The Platinum Group that publishes the Platinum Business Magazine (along with four other titles and owners of all the business awards in the South East). They all ensure that relevant introductions are made throughout the evening – the event is limited to 60 people to ensure they retain the personal touch.
All members receive the guest list 24 hours prior to every event. They can email Maarten, in confidence, to advise which people they would specifically like to be introduced to. The hosts will make casual introductions at some point during the evening. With 10 years experience and knowledge of the members, they often know exactly which members could benefit from meeting each other.
What type of companies attend The Platinum Club?
The vast majority of the club’s members are MDs of their own businesses. There is a good mix of multi-national blue chip, mid-size and small businesses from a wide range of sectors. I chatted to David Sheppard, Chairman of the Sussex Chamber of Commerce, during the evening. He also has fascinating business interests beyond that role too! David absolutely reinforced the easy relationship-building atmosphere of this club.
Maarten added “the attendees are based across a wide area, ranging from London to Brighton and Chichester to Hastings, with a few from France too! We certainly encourage the businesses to trade with each other since they are the cream of their relevant sectors.”
Maarten described the event as based on the premise that “you are coming to my house to meet my friends. It just so happens that my ‘house’ is rather grand (with 201 bedrooms) and my friends all run their own successful businesses.”
- Location: The Grand Hotel, Brighton
- Frequency: Monthly
- Size: Maximum of 60 attendees (55 the day I attended)
- Time: From 6.30pm until the last person leaves – you will always find a group of MD’s at the bar long into the night
- Lock out: Maximum of four per sector
- USP: Fully hosted cocktail party with no pitches and speeches, plus a range of benefits exclusively for The Platinum Club members.
Have a look at our huge list of networking groups in Sussex
Why not read our other networking blogs… including:
- Networking is it really worth it?
- Tips and ideas for your 1 minute networking presentation
- Business Networking events in East Sussex for Men and Women
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