Networking opportunities for entrepreneurs

Regional enterprise experts and a former Dragon will be encouraging entrepreneurs to ‘get connected’ as part of a week-long global business event.

Professor Julian Beer, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Regional Enterprise at Plymouth University, will launch Plymouth Enterprise Week 2014 – part of Global Entrepreneurship Week – on 17 November, alongside Tudor Evans, Plymouth City Council Leader; Gareth Hart, Chair of the Social Enterprise Network; and Lesley Shorrocks, Director of Plymouth Chamber.

The annual event is the world’s largest campaign to promote and inspire people to explore innovative business options including start-up businesses. This year’s focus is getting people connected, as Professor Julian Beer explains: 

“The week-long event gives us a stage to showcase the opportunities available not just in Plymouth but across our region.  Along with our partners, we are hosting a number of events in both Devon and Cornwall and hope to link individuals to industries to explore their potential or even to kick-start their career.”

Californian entrepreneur and former BBC Dragon Doug Richard will be the keynote speaker at the annual Cornwall Lecture, which will focus on how new technologies are in the process of transforming all businesses and how by exploiting them, Cornwall can once again become a beacon of prosperity. The event, organised by Plymouth University and law firm Stephens Scown LLP, will be held in the Hall for Cornwall on 18 November. 

Professor Gideon Maas, Director of the University’s Futures Entrepreneurship Centre, will give his Inaugural Lecture at Mast House on 19 November. In his talk ‘The Importance of Entrepreneurial Ecosystems within Regional Development Narrative’, Professor Maas will look at whether the activities that are available now are doing enough to tackle a struggling economy, let alone stimulate socio-economic growth.

And the annual Western Morning News Business Awards, in which Plymouth University is sponsoring the ‘Innovation of the Year’ and ‘Best Business Start-Up’ categories, will celebrate current talent, innovation and ambitions of local businesses in the West Country. It’s being held at Sandy Park in Exeter on 20 November.

Other programmed events during the week include a free screening of the Hollywood film ‘We Bought A Zoo’, and talks and workshops on ‘How Parenthood made me a Social Entrepreneur’, ‘Be Your Own Boss’, ‘Change money – change the world’ and ‘Apprenticeship Job Swap’.