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Belfast entrepreneurs can ‘Make it Happen’ during Global Entrepreneurship Week

Global Enterprise Week

Councillor Deirdre Hargey, Chair of Belfast City Council’s City Growth and Regeneration Committee joins Janine Graham, Business Manager at Barclays to launch this year’s programme of events to mark Global Entrepreneurship Week in Belfast

Global Enterprise Week

Councillor Deirdre Hargey, Chair of Belfast City Council’s City Growth and Regeneration Committee joins Janine Graham, Business Manager at Barclays to launch this year’s programme of events to mark Global Entrepreneurship Week in Belfast

A number of free events to inspire new and existing entrepreneurs will be taking place in Belfast as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) this month.

GEW runs from 16 to 22 November and is the world’s largest campaign to promote entrepreneurship playing an important role in encouraging the next generation of entrepreneurs to consider starting up their own businesses. Last year in the UK, over 2,500 events took place reaching more than 340,000 people.

This year’s theme ‘Make it Happen’ aims to encourage entrepreneurs to seize the opportunity to start their own enterprises.

GEW will kick off in Belfast with a joint event organised by the Council in conjunction with Barclays  – the Belfast Digital Business Club focusing on the theme of Innovation.

This business club will be held in the City Hall on Monday 16 November from 5.30pm-8pm. It will include presentations on digital innovation and an interactive showcase around digital technology and innovation.

Staff from Barclays will offer advice on connecting with customers in a digital world with topics covered during the evening including making social media work for your business; the importance of resilience for SMEs and booking a digital business review.

The City Hall will also play host to a one stop shop event for budding entrepreneurs on Tuesday 17 November. ‘Make it Happen’ will take place in the Great Hall from 12 noon-4pm and will be an opportunity for new businesses or budding entrepreneurs to meet local organisations that can provide help on starting a business.

Among the exhibitors at this event will be social enterprise clubs, the SME Centre at University of Ulster, Ormeau Business Park, City Business Hub, enterprise agencies, SENI, Barclays and Entrepreneurial Spark.

Attendees will receive support on generating new business ideas, advice on small business finance and marketing on a budget.

Meanwhile on Wednesday 18 November, student teams will battle it out against one another in the ‘Social Innovation Student Challenge’ taking place at The Hive from 12 noon- 5pm.

Belfast Entrepreneurs Network (BEN) with support from Belfast City Council will also host a ‘Journey to Success’ event at the Black Box on Thursday 19 November from 5.30pm  – 8pm. Attendees to this event will hear from local business owners who will share their stories on how they ‘made it happen’, charting their journey to success. They will have the chance to put questions to a panel and network with other businesses.

On Monday 16 November (the first day of GEW), the Council will also be hosting a free seminar in City Hall from 11.45am-2.30pm around procurement opportunities. This seminar will provide an overview to new entrepreneurs on council procurement processes, information on how to find out about upcoming tender opportunities and tips on compiling a tender proposal document.

Councillor Deirdre Hargey, Chair of the Council’s City Growth and Regeneration Committee, said: “We host a number of events each year in the city to mark GEW supporting our local businesses and budding entrepreneurs who want advice and support on taking those first steps to start a business.

“I would encourage anyone thinking of starting a business to attend one or all of these events which are free. We want to see our SMEs grow putting Belfast on the global map to compete with others thus ensuring our place as a vibrant, sustainable and innovative city.”

Janine Graham, Business Manager with Barclays, said: “We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Belfast City Council to bring our joint event to small businesses in Belfast. The event will help entrepreneurs maximise their use of digital technologies such as social media as well as showcase new technologies like 3-D printing.”

For more information on all the events taking place in Belfast as part of GEW, visit the council website at www.belfastcity.gov.uk/globalentrepreneurshipweek

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