NewcastleGateshead wins international entrepreneurial conference for 2019

31st July 2017

Categories: Convention Bureau latest news

Northumbria and Newcastle universities have collaborated to win the bid to host the 42nd annual ISBE (Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship) conference in 2019 thanks to their world-renowned business schools and the region’s reputation for innovation, start-ups and entrepreneurship.

Taking place over two days at the Crowne Plaza Hotel and the Boiler Shop in Newcastle’s iconic Stephenson Quarter, the ISBE conference will attract over 400 attendees - made up of an international audience of experts in small business and entrepreneurship from more than 40 countries. The estimated economic impact figure for the event is more than £400,000.

The bid was spearheaded by academics Michele Rusk (Northumbria University) and Robert Newbery (Newcastle University), who jointly stated: “We are delighted that, against stiff competition, the great city of Newcastle has won the bid to host this prestigious international ISBE Annual Conference. Our entrepreneurial partnership represents a radical new approach based on collective collaboration and co-creation. This is the first step in developing an entrepreneurial laboratory for change in the North East. As conference Chairs, we are committed to delivering a ground-breaking conference and a memorable Geordie experience.

“This unique partnership between both Universities, supported unstintingly by NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau, has succeeded in winning this significant event. The ISBE board of trustees were overwhelmingly impressed by the quality of the proposal and unanimously approved Newcastle as the winning city. The conference will showcase the region’s highly ambitious and fast growing New Economy industries where knowledge is the key to business growth and sustainability.”

The international conference, previously held in Paris in 2016 and Glasgow in 2015, has become known as the place to go for the highest-quality, cutting-edge entrepreneurial and small business research. The event aims to enable excellence in small businesses across research, policy, practice and learning communities.

Professor Pauric McGowan, President of the Institute, commented: “The Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship is the longest established network of researchers and educators in entrepreneurship and small business in the UK, drawing members from across the practitioner community and those involved in the development of small business policy. So we’re delighted that our annual conference will be held in Newcastle in 2019, a region of the UK with a strong industrial heritage and a thriving entrepreneurial community.”

NewcastleGateshead is becoming increasingly known for its academic excellence and a thriving start-up scene. Campus North is recognised as one of the best co-working and event spaces for tech meetups, start-ups and established businesses in Europe and is home to Ignite, the UK’s leading angel-led accelerator programme for ambitious digital start-ups. With sustainability at its heart, Newcastle Science Central is not only a testbed for urban sustainability, it’s designed to support a thriving new business and academic community, creating jobs and making ground-breaking scientific advances.

Across the river, Gateshead is home to VRTGO Labs, a micro-cluster of AR and VR companies and the Northern Design Centre, home to Northumbria University’s off-campus design-led innovation Centre, INNOVATE, and a premier location for creative and design led businesses.

Paul Szomoru, Head of Business Tourism at NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau, said: “We’re thrilled that NewcastleGateshead has been chosen as the host destination for ISBE’s Annual Conference in 2019 thanks to Newcastle and Northumbria Universities. Winning the bid represents a significant achievement for two of the North East’s largest institutions, who have adopted a collaborative approach and formed a successful partnership which will have a lasting impact on the region’s small businesses and entrepreneurs.

“As a destination with an established and flourishing entrepreneurial community, ISBE’s globally recognised event is a fantastic opportunity to support and showcase the very best of small business and enterprise across the region – ensuring that we continue to be recognised as a global hub for this sector. These ambitions also reinforce the work of our colleagues at Invest Newcastle in their aim to attract and secure new investment and jobs for the city.”


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