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Business engagement boosted in 2018 Festival

The annual fortnight of diverse business events headline partnered by Leicester Castle Business School saw more than 100 free events attended by over 7,250 people - around 20 per cent of these coming from outside the area.

Engagement from the local business community has shown to be very encouraging. The amount of businesses involved through sponsorship, attending, hosting or running an event is up by 16 per cent on last year and an overwhelming majority of attendees1 (65 per cent) were from the private sector.

First-time Business Festival event organisers were responsible for running 45 per cent of events.

Businesses involved with the Festival were all different sizes - not just SMEs (small to medium-sized enterprises) as might be expected. Twenty-four per cent of those involved were from large companies (with more than 250 employees) whilst just over 25 per cent were SMEs, and 42 per cent had less than 15 employees.

New attendees were drawn to the Festival by the events on offer as 47 per cent of people indicated that the Festival was the first business event they had been to in the past six months.

Scott Knowles, Chair of the Leicester Business Festival Community Interest Company said, “These are great statistics that not only show the Business Festival is continuing to attract new people and businesses, but also demonstrate there is a desire by the business community to engage, develop and grow, with more businesses than ever getting involved.

“The feedback has been brilliant, with 89 per cent of businesses rating the events they attended as good to excellent and 87 per cent saying that the Festival had a positive effect on their business.

“This is exactly what the Festival is all about. The Leicester Business Festival is truly becoming the region’s economic showcase and with so many positive outcomes, we will be keeping that momentum going as we move forward into 2019.”

Alister de Ternant, Managing Director of Associate Events added, “This morning (Friday 16 November) the Business Festival Steering Group confirmed the dates for 2019 as 28 October to 8 November. From our perspective that means all systems go!

“We are already in conversation with a number of sponsors and are very interested to hear from any organisations that would like to become involved. In the Spring, we will be opening up the applications to host an event and will be holding another ‘How to Host an Amazing Event’ for people to come along and get some useful tips on organising a successful event in the Business Festival.

“All that remains, is for me to once again thank all our 2018 sponsors and partners who are all listed below, in particular our headline partner, Leicester Castle Business School. It’s been a great year and we’re already looking forward to 2019.”

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