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Plans to revitalise the International Business Festival have been approved today by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority.

At its monthly meeting today the Combined Authority agreed to commission a partner to deliver a new-look festival, delivered across multiple venues around the city region.

The festival will feature a “good business” concept, developed following a creative design exercise, that will explore how businesses can maximise social benefits, with a focus on engaging local residents and organisations, as well as attracting an international business audience.

Speaking about the recommendations, Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said:

“This new approach will build on the success of previous business festivals that we have supported as a Combined Authority.

“Clearly there are lot of details yet to be decided but these are very exciting new ideas for the festival that will see businesses and civic society coming together to explore how we can maximise the social impact of investment and business activity. 

“The concept of a dispersed festival, using venues across the whole city region, also has huge potential to engage with local people and organisations in an innovative way, whilst also attracting an international audience.”

Asif Hamid MBE, Portfolio Holder for Business Support and Brexit, said:

“The International Business Festival has helped to raise the profile of the City Region with tens of thousands of businesses over recent years. It is important that we take the opportunity to build on that legacy in a way that actively involves and benefits our local businesses.  This new approach looks very promising and should enable us to build on previous experience and successes, while developing an innovative approach that will involve the whole of the city region.”

An investment of up to £3m has been approved to deliver the 2020 festival.

Previous festivals in 2014, 2016 and 2018 attracted tens of thousands of business people from more than 100 countries and generated hundreds of millions of pounds of investment for UK firms.

Delivery of an international business festival in 2020 forms part of the Liverpool City Region’s devolution agreement with central government.

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