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East Midlands Chamber News

Great turnout for launch of LBF 2018

More than 100 guests gathered at De Montfort University’s (DMU) impressive Vijay Patel building this morning for the launch of the 2018 Leicester Business Festival (LBF).

The Vijay Patel building is the centrepiece of DMU’s £136m campus transformation project and just one great example of the investment, worth millions of pounds, currently being undertaken in and around the city and Leicestershire, making it a hotspot for business and investment.

Now in its fourth year, LBF is an established feature in the annual business calendar and is becoming bigger, stronger, gaining more support from the business community year-on-year and is representative of the broad spectrum of the thriving, extensive and diverse business activity within Leicester and Leicestershire.

On this first morning of the 2018 LBF, a line-up of prominent business leaders took to the stage to open the exciting two-week spectacle of Leicester and Leicestershire business.

They included: Professor Dana Brown, De Montfort University Pro Vice-Chancellor (Enterprise), Dean, Faculty of Business and Law and Principal, Leicester Castle Business School, Keval and Kunal Dattani, Mo Bros, Scott Knowles, Chair of the LBF and Chief Executive at East Midlands Chamber, Mike Kapur, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire, Pam Posnett CC Leicestershire County Council, and Sir Peter Soulsby, City Mayor.

The 2018 Festival boasts a 114-strong programme of business events taking place all over the city and county over the next fortnight.

There are free events in a huge variety of topics and work areas ranging from hi-tech manufacturing, sport, health and retail events to opportunities in space, life sciences and the property sectors, as well as help with finances, communications, business support and much more.

More than 10,000 people are expected to attend and a third of these are expected to come from outside the midlands, showing that the name of the Festival is spreading and is drawing an audience from far and wide.

DMU’s Leicester Castle Business School is headlining the Business Festival for a second year running and the University is playing an integral role.

Professor Dana Brown said: “DMU is delighted to be the headline sponsor again. We recognise the importance of developing relationships with businesses and the significant part that the LBF can play in facilitating new connections and growing on-going associations.

"DMU is involved in ten events, ranging from product development assistance and protecting intellectual property to managing equality and diversity; a round-table discussion about women in construction as well as an event to show how to make use of open resources in business.

“They are proving to be popular events which demonstrate there is an appetite from the business community to work with the university.”

Scott Knowles, Chair of the Leicester Business Festival and the Chamber’sChief Executive, said: “The Business Festival is a great reflection of the region’s continuously developing landscape, providing a strong message to a world stage of inward investors that Leicester is the place to come to for business.

“It is constantly evolving and receiving more support than ever before with a new Board, sector leads and importantly, great sponsors - in particular, our headline partner, Leicester Castle Business School.

“We are continuing to introduce new elements such as the coffee hubs and the App, making the Festival more accessible. We are anticipating an increase in attendees as a result.

“There are so many diverse events to choose from, that there is sure to be something for everyone. I would encourage people to look at the programme to see what’s on offer.”

The majority of events in the Business Festival are completely free and anyone can attend.

The full programme of events is available on the www.leicesterbusinessfestival.com website or via the new App, which is free to download from Google Play or the Apple Store.

Leicester Business Festival is managed by Associate Events.

Along with headline partners, Leicester Castle Business School, the Festival has the support of well-known business organisations including East Midlands Chamber, LLEP Business Gateway, East Midlands Airport, Brewin Dolphin, University of Leicester School of Business, Highcross Leicester, the FSB and Shakespeare Martineau.

Other supporters include Everards Brewery, De Montfort University, Pattersons Commercial Law, Growth Partners PLC and the Institute of Directors, as well as official app partner Infonote, AV media partner The Presentation Group, Coffee partner 200 Degrees and media partners Cross Productions and Capital Radio.