April/May 2019

The Northern Business Expo in Central Manchester

For two days in March the Northern Business Expo took over Manchester Central in Central Manchester showcasing business advice and insights for entrepreneurs, start-ups, SMEs and business professionals. The Expo was all about supporting businesses through growth as well as a great place to network.

Often the thing we need help with the most in business is identifying our weaknesses and finding solutions to take us on to the next level, that’s what this event was all about – providing advice, inspiration, motivation and a chance to network. In uncertain economic times, it helped both visitors and exhibitors find ways to stand out and stay competitive. With over 80 seminars and workshops, 1-2-1 advice from impartial specialists, an interactive exhibition and some of the best speakers from around the world; the Northern Business Exhibition was certainly the place to do business.

Seminars and workshops included:

  • Access to Alternative Finance – Local Experts from the British Business Bank, Maven Capital
    and the Business Growth Hub
  • Update on the UK and World Economy post Brexit from Dr. John Ashcroft of The Saturday Economist
  • Writing for Social Media, Build a Digital Marketing Plan, Answer Questions with Data, and lots more with Google Digital Garage
  • Mental Health: A Whole Organisation Approach with Dr Libby Artingstall
  • How To Start a Successful Blog Business with Emma Campbell from What Emma Did
  • The Key To Business Success In 2019 with renowned business coach, Ben Kench

Also featuring over the two days were:

  • 1-2-1 personalised and impartial advice appointments
  • 4 dedicated networking partners
  • Google Digital Garage
  • The Small Business Advice Clinic
  • More than 100 exhibitors
  • Funding clinics – finance to grow
  • Expert analysis on the industry and how to stay competitive

The £5K Pitch

Also back with a new panel of judges was the £5K pitch. This was an opportunity for budding entrepreneurs to pitch their business idea to a renowned panel of business leaders for the chance to win a lump sum of £5,000 plus a huge range of free business services. This year’s winner was Emma McClelland who won with her business ‘Kintsugi Clothing’ offering designer clothing to a sector of the marketplace not normally represented. We asked Emma what she thought about the competition and also asked her to introduce her winning brand:

£5K Winner Emma McClelland

Well done on winning the £5k Pitch Challenge. How do you feel?
“Shocked, elated and didn’t see it coming!”

Can you briefly explain what it is you do?
“Yes, Kintsugi clothing is a fashion brand and we create on-trend women’s wear using suggestions from across the disabled community to make sure that each piece is accessible as well as fashionable.
“Basically each garment has got, say, less fiddly fastenings or are considered how they might look in a wheelchair and of course their functionality. The pieces work hard for the wearer and make life easier.”

What are your plans for the future, after winning this?
“The money is going to be an incredible help in terms of gaining visibility as our digital marketing side is lacking. People don’t really know about us at the moment and so we want to develop our presence on a practical level, but also on a bigger level, it’s to change the way disabled people are seen in society. Disabled people are consumers, they are fashion conscious. It’s time to level the playing-field and I hope this company can help to do this.”

Learn more and register for your FREE Tickets for 2020: northernbusinessexpo.com