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Fourth annual Leicester Business Festival kicks off at award-winning campus centrepiece

More than 100 guests gathered at De Montfort University’s (DMU) impressive Vijay Patel building this morning (Monday 29 October) for the launch of the 2018 Leicester Business Festival (LBF) fortnight.

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

Nowhere is more fitting to articulate this message than through the Leicester Business Festival.

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

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

  • Scott Knowles, chair of the LBF and chief executive at East Midlands Chamber

  • Mike Kapur OBE, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire

  • Pam Posnett MBE CC Leicestershire County Council

  • 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 anticipated 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 (pictured left) said, “DMU is delighted to be the headline sponsor again. We recognise the importance in developing relationships with businesses and the significant part that the LBF can play in facilitating new connections and growing on-going associations.

Prof Dana Brown"DMU is involved in ten events ranging from product development assistance and protecting intellectual property to managing equality and diversity; a roundtable 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 demonstrates there is an appetite from the business community to work with the university.”

Scott Knowles, Chair of the Leicester Business Festival 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 website or via the new LBF App which is free to download from Google Play or the Apple Store.

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