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Frankly you don’t want to sit next to a BID professional at a dinner party, someone will ask them ‘so what do you do?’ and you will have to listen a long winded and apologetic explanation about hereditaments and additionality when really what you were expecting was, ‘I’m an oboe teacher,’ or, ‘I recently took early retirement thanks to my lucrative stint as a celebrity pet costume designer’.
Unless you know what you are talking about the acronym BID doesn’t really mean anything, it doesn’t help of course that bid is a word in its own right so saying Cardiff BID to the person on the street isn’t useful – they assume we’re angling to secure the Commonwealth Games or a particularly fetching hat on E-Bay, we aren’t. That’s why we decided that we should move away from the ‘BID’ label and find something different – this is quite a common tactic particularly amongst London BIDs, the likes of the New West End Company, Fitzrovia Partnership, Team London Bridge etc.
Last night we unveiled FOR Cardiff to the world, the world being the 100 odd people we welcomed at the Park Plaza’s Kuku Club. It’s a new name and a new look that the team and the board are really happy with. We wanted to create a new identity that better represents the work that we do – this can be tricky in the business improvement district world, we do street cleaning, cost saving, event sponsorship and free training. FOR Cardiff works for all of that, or so we like to think!
On a panel at the recent IPM conference I spoke about how the term business improvement district is a slight misnomer, are members aren’t all businesses by legal definition or by ethos the majority of them are of course but we have community spaces, charities, universities and almost any other organisation we can imagine under our umbrella. We love the FOR Cardiff concept because its inclusive, because we think it really is a perfect summary of what we are – the shops, bars, museums, universities, tourist attractions and everything else are what make up Cardiff and that’s why we’re here, not for profit, not for ego, just FOR Cardiff.