The Groton Board of Trade
In the fall of 2010, a group of Groton business owners formed the Groton Board of Trade (GBOT) to build a network of businesses and farms within the town. We encourage all business owners to become part of this organization to energize the local economy.
The Groton Board of Trade (GBOT) is a group of storefront businesses, farmers/agricultural business owners, corporations, home-based businesses, professionals and organizations working together to foster ties between Groton businesses and residents.
The primary goal of the GBOT is to foster business and agricultural growth that enhances both the cultural and economic qualities of life in the Town of Groton. The GBOT plays an active role in developing Groton, expanding the tax base, creating local jobs.
The GBOT is dedicated to promoting economic progress for its members and advocating for a positive business environment within the Town of Groton.
What’s in it for you?
There are many benefits of membership:
- Increased Business – One of the principles upon which GBOT is founded is the idea that people do business with others that they know and trust. “Networking” is a very valuable and effective way of doing business in a small-town environment.
- Online Town of Groton Business Listing visibility – The Town of Groton’s website, TownofGroton.org serves as a direct portal to the GBOT website, GrotonBoardofTrade.com.
- Strength in Numbers – When issues arise that could affect the Groton business and farming community (e.g., changes in the sign by-law), being part of a group gives you a stronger voice.
- Common Cause – As a group, Groton businesses and farms are able to identify opportunities for one-time or recurring events that benefit the residents and businesses (e.g., Shop Groton Local).
- Business Advocacy – The GBOT is used as a means of advocating for businesses in general or for a specific business before Town boards, and often Town Meetings.
- Community Service – The GBOT does many positive things in the community (see GBOT programs below). As a member, you’ll enjoy the benefits of the equity that the GBOT builds with Groton residents. It is considerably more effective to serve the community as part of a group than it is to do so individually. Over time, giving back to the community is not only good karma, it is good business.
Membership is open to any Groton resident that owns or manages a business (in or out of Groton), and for any Groton business, where the owner/manager need not live in Groton. There are three kinds of memberships in the GBOT: Business Memberships, Non-Profit Memberships, and Individual Memberships.
- A Business Membership costs $100 per year and includes 3 pre-paid Individual Memberships.
- A Non-Profit Membership costs $50 per year and is appropriate for non-profit organizations.
- Individual memberships cost $50 per year. Individual Memberships are for Groton residents who do not necessarily own or run a business, but are interested participating by being an individual contributor.
Any business or individual that wants to join the GBOT may do so online by clicking Apply Online. Once payment has been received, the business and contact person will be enabled as a member.
When & Where?
The GBOT meets on the 3rd Wednesday of each month, from September to June (on hiatus for July and August). Meetings are held in the evenings at the Groton Country Club and are usually catered by a local restaurant or professional caterer. The agenda at the meetings can vary, but can always be counted on to provide an informative program.
The Executive Committee of the GBOT is made up of four officers: President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The Board of Directors is made up of the Executive Committee, and up to seven other GBOT members. The Executive Committee and the Board of Directors serve a one-year term. The administrative year begins on September 1st and ends on August 31st.
The GBOT has two sub-committees:
- Membership Committee – This committee is chartered with increasing the membership of the GBOT.
- Business Development Committee – This committee is chartered with Fundraising, for which GBOT implements business development programs directly for its members. GBOT may also give annually to local student scholarships, grants, or donations to various entrepreneurial business initiatives. The Business Development Committee will also endeavor to foster business growth and mentor incoming businesses to enhance the quality of life, both economic and cultural, in the Town of Groton. The committee will meet with people interested in opening a new business in Groton as well as existing businesses that want to make changes/expand.
- Farm to Table Program – This effort will try to connect local (not just Groton) farms with restaurants to provide adequate local produce for restaurants. This is a regional effort that cannot fully by achieved when limited to just Groton businesses and farms, so an outreach program to farms in the region is planned.
- Information for New and Changing Businesses – The Groton Board of Trade is working with the Land Use Department in Town Hall to develop one or more documents intended to help businesses understand the permitting process in town. These documents, once complete, will be helpful for both businesses considering starting up in Town as well as businesses considering changing certain characteristics. These documents will help the Business.