Chamber International bridges the gap

A family fishing firm is exploring new waters thanks to a film project focusing on the seaport of Grimsby. Fastline Shellfish Ltd features in the short film Grimsby United, which demonstrates how the firm, with the help and support of Chamber International, is moving on from its very traditional focus to also consider the benefits of exporting.

The film, commissioned by LinkedIn, has been showing in cinema venues nationwide, immediately prior to the screening of blockbuster movie Downton Abbey.

As recently as the 1950’s, Grimsby was the largest and busiest fishing port in the world, its fish quay crammed with boats arriving full with fresh catches from the North Sea, but Darren Kenyon, who heads up Fastline, says that his family firm is now one of just a handful of fishing boat operators there.

He knows that his business needs to adapt in order survive and grow, and so has been interested in exporting shellfish, specifically brown crabs, to China – where they are regarded as a delicacy. But, where to start?

Film production company Archers Mark approached Chamber International and this introduction provided a dynamic catalyst for change, with in-house specialists from CI providing support to underpin Darren’s export ambitions.

A pivotal moment in the film shows export specialist Tamires Souza-Cichorz giving Darren the good news that Chinese wholesalers on LinkedIn, whom Chamber International had begun direct discussions with in Mandarin, are showing a positive interest in a business relationship with Fastline.

Darren is quick to acknowledge, having the right help at the right time can make all the difference. The focus now is on increasing capacity to meet demand, and thanks to the power of connection, he can now say, “I’m here to stay!”