As part of their commitment to helping Manchester businesses scale-up and grow their presence in the US, Virgin Atlantic recently convened a 'SME Roundtable' with members of the local business community and celebrated entrepreneur Piers Linney.
The assembled room of business leaders were able to learn how Piers, himself a local to the area having studied at Manchester University, first started out in business; from the early days of his career knocking on doors in Wall Street to becoming a member of the Dragons’ Den panel.
As Piers himself pointed out during the session, if just one per cent of the UK’s small and medium sized businesses were to scale-up then it would create an extra 250,000 jobs, giving the economy a significant boost in the process.
Business in the city is no-doubt in good health, however progress is being stunted by factors such as transportation links. With this in mind much of the session, which included a Q & A with Piers, focused on how to turn perceived challenges into an advantage for a business.
"It was really encouraging to see such a wide variety of local businesses represented, from cryptocurrency to cargo and everything in-between. The challenge lay in delivering advice specific to each entrepreneur's niche. Piers did a great job, pulling on his experience as a lawyer, investment banker and fund manager. As he said in his closing remarks, you often find the answers by putting entrepreneurs in the same room together as they'll find the answers themselves," commented event host Alex Chisnall of StartUpU.
"Someone's had the same challenge before - and solved it. It's about getting out from behind your laptops and rubbing shoulders with like-minded entrepreneurs at events like this. I'm personally looking forward to the next event on November 27th."
If you’d like to attend the next Screw It Just Do It : Startup & Scale event then you can get your ticket by heading over to the StartUpU website. As well as the event, Virgin Atlantic and Piers have teamed up to offer the chance to win two return flights from Manchester Airport on a Delta or Virgin Atlantic service and a one-on-one mentoring session with Piers. To be in with a chance of winning you need to secure your ticket for the next event and then ask Piers a question on his LinkedIn profile using the hashtag #AskPiers.
You can also find more about Flying Co, Virgin Atlantic's dedicated corporate loyalty scheme designed for the SMEs, by heading over to the Virgin Atlantic website.