Global Entrepreneurship Week 2017: The events you won’t want to miss

The largest festival of entrepreneurship is back. GEW 2017 promises to be bigger and better than ever, but what are this year's business highlights?

Here at Startups, we love anything that promotes enterprise, collaboration and innovation so it’s always a pleasure to cover – and attend – Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Billed as “the world’s largest festival of entrepreneurship”, GEW has grown into a global phenomenon. With over 164 countries now taking part and in excess of 37,000 events, there’s something for would-be entrepreneurs, fast-growth business owners and everyone in between.

Back this year from Monday 13 November to Sunday 19 November, in the UK alone, there are over 150 events from 49 partners to choose from.

So where should you begin?

Well, whether it’s investment insights you’re after or tips on getting your business fighting fit, we’ve complied our pick of the best events this year you won’t want to miss.

Routes to Growth

When: Wednesday 15 November
Where: Shangri’La at The Shard, London, SE1 9SG
Time: 11:00am-17:30pm (followed by networking drinks)
Cost: Free

Specifically targeted at business owners looking to expand overseas in Asia, this one-day free conference hosted by Cathay Pacific and HSBC features a great lineup of speakers including William Kim, CEO of All Saints and Will Butler-Adams from Brompton Bikes among others.

With a range of panel discussions looking at trading pain points, best new markets and cautionary tales around intellectual property, this packed day is perfect for ambitious entrepreneurs who want to find out more about business opportunities between Britain, China, and Asia.

A networking champagne reception will follow the talks. Limited spaces remain, get your place here.

#StartedinOxford Demo Night

When: Wednesday 15 November
Where: Blackwell Hall, Weston Library, Broad Street, Oxford, OX1 3BG
Time: 18:00pm-20:30pm
Cost: Free

Find out more about the buzzing Oxford start-up scene with this showcase event. Featuring a cross-section of businesses from in and around Oxford, it’s a great opportunity to meet likeminded entrepreneurs in Oxford and see the best of the current start-up talent.

There’s also a bit of healthy competition, all attendees will be given 1,000 #StartedinOxford pounds to invest with and at the end of the night the business with the most investment will win a prize!

Great for networking and supporting the local community, if you want to attend register your interest here.

#Scale4Success – Launch of Pink Sky Academy

When: Wednesday 15 November
Where: House of Lords, Parliament Square, London, SW1A 0PW
Time: 18:30pm-20:30pm
Cost: Free

Networking club for leading women – and men, Pink Shoe, is publishing its latest report #Scale4Success to coincide with GEW. The report will be discussed during an interactive roundtable, featuring high profile female entrepreneurs and aims to expand participants’ knowledge and skills to promote business growth.

The evening will also see the club launch its new Pink Sky Academy for female enterprise.

To be part of the discussion, register your interest here.

The Investment Conference 2017

When: Wednesday 15 November
Where: NatWest, 280 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 4RB
Time: 12:30pm-18:30pm
Cost: From £34.30 (discounts available via GEW)

Back for a second year, The Investment Conference promises to bring together a whole host of leading investment firms and growth-support institutions to offer advice on what investors are really looking for.

With a range of talks including ‘What’s trending?’ (in funding) and ‘How to hit your crowdfunding target’, there’s also a networking reception with funders where you can ‘Chat your way to success’.

Book your ticket here.

How to Transform Your Business

When: Thursday 16 November
Where: citizenM Glasgow hotel, 60 Renfrew St, Glasgow, G2 3BW
Time: 08:00am-10:00am
Cost: Free

On behalf of Virgin Media Business and in partnership with us here at Startups, this exclusive morning event includes an expert panel discussion on the power of digital to transform your business – as well as some networking over breakfast bites.

Part of a nationwide series, the event will explore these digital necessities for future business success: enhancing customer experience, clever digital marketing, and improved IT infrastructure to engage and convert consumers.

To secure a place, register your interest here.

The Business Show

When: Thursday 16 November-Friday 17 November
Where: Olympia, London W148UX
Time:
 09:00-22:00pm
Cost: 
Free

Free to attend, and with a packed schedule taking place across two days, The Business Show at Olympia brings together 25,000 businesses to help them improve and expand – regardless of industry.

Offering a diverse range of keynote speakers, from founder of Hair Rehab and Towie personality Lauren Pope to Dragons’ Den stars Levi Roots, Hilary Devey and new Dragon Jenny Campbell, there’s also a whole host of practical workshops and seminars. A highlight for this year is the Google Digital Garage, where business owners can get face-to-face business coaching, courses and mentoring.

To grab your free ticket, register here.

Northern Stars Grand Final

When: Thursday 16 November
Where: The Stoller Hall, Hunt’s Bank, Manchester, M3 1DA
Time: 14:00pm-21:00pm
Cost: Free

Celebrating the North’s hottest start-ups, this event will see 20 businesses pitch for three minutes in front of industry experts, investors – and peers like yourself.

Pitches will kick off at 15:00pm with the winner announced at 19:30, followed by drinks and networking.

With start-ups from a cross-section of industries, garner some inspiration and meet some fellow entrepreneurs by registering here.

The Tech World Tour

When: Thursday 16 November
Where: Here East, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London, E20 3BS
Time: 15:00pm-18:30pm
Cost: £15

With London the tech capital of Europe, the big question on everyone’s lips is what impact Brexit might have on our thriving tech scene. What will it mean for investment and what might the impact on talent be?

These questions and more will be posed to a number of industry experts, high profile entrepreneurs and ministers at this Tech London Advocates event, with BBC business presenter Ben Thompson hosting.

There will also be 50 exciting start-ups exhibiting in a marketplace.

Billed as an event for people who ‘care about the future of London tech’, join the conversation by buying a ticket here. (The small fee is a reflection of the calibre of the event and the not-for-profit ethos behind it but a promotional code can be gained from Russ Shaw if needed).

Fighting fit for business

When: Thursday 16 November
Where: The Business Terrace, King Street, Maidstone, ME15 6JQ
Time: 18:00pm-20:00pm
Cost: Free

Not your usual business talk, fighting fit for business literally brings together two fighting masters – both martial arts experts.

Bokken specialist David DiCara will give practical examples of how Kendo swordsmanship could help your business becoming ‘fighting fit’, while karate master Matt Leipnik will focus on how the marital mindset in business could help with mental toughness.

The evening will also have plenty of networking and the chance for you to meet other businesses at varying stages of their business journey.

If that piques your interest, register now while spaces are still available.

Inspiring Entrepreneurs: Question Time

When: Thursday 16 November
Where: The British Library Knowledge Centre, 96 Euston Road, London, NW1 2DB
Time: 19:00pm-21:30pm
Cost: £15

Billed as a flagship event, this evening at The British Library in London will give entrepreneurs the unique chance to ask their burning questions to the founders behind some of Britain’s most successful start-ups.

With a lineup of panelists including Charles Rolls, the founder of premium drinks brand Fever-Tree, Rob Law, the inventor of children’s suitcase range Trunki (one of Dragons’ Dens biggest success stories despite no investment) and one of Startups’ own Young Guns, Polly McMaster, founder of womenswear label The Fold  it should be a night to remember.

If you’ve got a question on your mind, book your place now. There are also live screenings being held at other libraries regionally.

The biggest ever StartUp Saturday

When: Saturday 18 November
Where: The British Library Conference Centre, 96 Euston Road, London, NW1 2DB
Time: 9:30am-4:00pm
Cost: From £36

Another regular in the GEW calendar, Enterprise Nation’s one day class on all things start-up is back. Covering the dos and don’ts for first-time entrepreneurs when it comes to business plans, making some noise about your business and more, this one-day event can help you turn your business idea into a reality in just one day.

Perfect for aspiring entrepreneurs or business owners who are just starting out, tickets are available to purchase here.

To get involved in this year’s Global Entrepreneurship Week or for more information on upcoming events, follow the hashtag #GEW2017.