Kicking off 2021 with Summit Success

347 Delegates. 18 Speakers. 5 Sponsors. 5 Hours. 4 Partners. 4 Workshops. 1 Incredible Summit.

The Kent and Medway Business Summit 2021 proved a huge success with 5 hours of collaboration, inspiring speakers and networking hosted on Remo, the virtual events platform that brought the Summit to life. The digital event held on Friday 15 January brought together key policy makers with businesses large and small, bringing together their visions for the region and organised by partners, the University of Kent, Federation of Small Business, Institute of Directors and Locate in Kent.

The virtual platform, Remo, allowed guests to move freely across the three virtual ‘floors,’ giving them a chance to interact and network within the digital conference centre.

Sharing exciting news on the future of Kent and Medway, the event speakers included Kent County Council Leader, Cllr Roger Gough, Deputy Chief Executive at Medway Council, Richard Hicks and CEO at Locate in Kent Gavin Cleary, who each provided an update on inward investment, support for jobs and business plus the bid for Medway to be the UK City of Culture 2025. At a national level, the Summit heard from speakers including Professor Anand Menon, regular Radio 4 contributor and Director of UK in a Changing Europe, who spoke about the UK’s new political relationship with the EU and its impact on business.

Dr Roger Barker, Director of Policy from the Institute of Directors gave insights into the latest Government response to Covid-19 followed by global tech pioneer, Rana el Kaliouby, who spoke about Emotion AI and its impact on society and businesses. In addition to the keynote speeches, delegates took part in workshops on innovation and productivity in the region’s food and drink sector, the future of our town centres and high streets, the development of digital skills in the region and creation of a sustainable infrastructure.

Delegates also heard from experts in the field when attending the workshops. Guests included the Chair of the Government’s High Street Task Force, Mark Robinson, Managing Director of South Eastern Railways, David Statham, Jonathan Parker, Managing Director of Kent-based firm Foodari and tech expert Lizzie Hodgson.

Professor Marian Garcia, Dean of Kent Business School, which led on the organisation of the Summit, commented: ‘The past year has been extremely challenging for a number of sectors, so it was important that the Summit provided a platform at this pivotal time for businesses to come together with policy makers to create a shared vision for Kent and Medway.

‘It was inspiring to hear the work our local authorities and agencies are doing to ensure the renewal of the region and to see the clear passion and resilience of the business communities.

‘Thanks to our Summit partners and sponsors whose support made the event possible.’

Headline sponsors of the Kent and Medway Business Summit 2021 were Kreston Reeves. Supporting sponsors were Kayo Digital, Canterbury AI, British Business Bank and Southeastern Railway.

For full list of agenda and speakers go here: Kent and Medway Business Summit Agenda

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