Despite Friday’s snow the Warwickshire Expo 2013 went ahead as planned, attracting 150 delegates to an early morning networking breakfast. The venue had avoided the worst of the snow, but areas north and east of Warwick were badly affected.
The Expo, organised by Warwickshire County Council as part of the Going for Growth initiative, took place at the Warwickshire Exhibition Centre just outside Leamington Spa on Thursday 21st and Friday 22nd of March.
The purpose of the event was to showcase the range of world-renowned companies we have in the county. The first day was attended by over 500 children and teachers from various schools across the county; and the second day was specifically for business networking, starting with a breakfast and business address from keynote speaker Patrick Harris and WCC director Monica Fogarty.
Private sector firms exhibiting covered a variety of sectors including, automotive and advanced manufacturing, intelligent transport systems, low carbon technologies and digital media and gaming, where Warwickshire has particular global strengths
The Expo’s official sponsor Jaguar Land Rover had a substantial presence at the show, bringing their ‘Schools Challenge’ where the children can guide remote-controlled 4×4 vehicles around an off-road track. In addition, the Gaydon-based manufacturer showcased their varied expertise through a vehicle display which featured a Land Rover Discovery and a Jaguar XKR Convertible.
The exhibition was based around a central ‘gallery’ area which featured a range of products including a large photo-voltaic solar panel from Southam-based Alumet; a Land Rover Defender vehicle featuring a range of products made by manufacturer Mantec; the latest games from Rare Games on a Xbox Kinect system; and a soapbox racer by MIRA; amongst many other exhibits.
Games company Codemasters were a huge hit at the event, giving attendees a first glimpse of the sequel to their Bafta award winning game Grid, which is not released for another two months. In addition, Mask-arade were overrun with children wanting their photo with popular boy-band One Direction (albeit their life-size cutouts!).
Another element to the Expo was the range of informative and interesting seminars which took place over the two days. On Thursday the careers service (CSWP Ltd) provided advice to school children, who were also able to visit a seminar delivered by local companies Alstom, Altair, Automotive Insulations, Repl Consulting and the MTC. On Friday there were business seminars presented by a range of organisations including Jaguar Land Rover, WMG, the Chamber of Commerce and Breeze Strategy, as well as Patrick Harris who was also the keynote speaker at the networking breakfast event.
“The Warwickshire Expo is a flagship project of our Going for Growth initiative, designed to support business growth in the county, and a response to what local business have asked for – a platform to showcase their products and services to local people and the wider business community”, said Monica Fogarty, Strategic Director of Communities at Warwickshire County Council.
“We’re delighted that 500 young people from local schools had the opportunity to meet with some of Warwickshire’s leading businesses, no doubt providing them with invaluable experience to help plan for their future, in the knowledge that a wide range of fantastic employment opportunities are available on their doorstop.”
Click here to view a pdf of the Event Guide. Many of the seminars were recorded, and these will be available online shortly.