The 19th annual Heathrow Business Summit opened its doors today, welcoming an estimated 200 small and medium sized enterprises from across the country that are looking to bid for the many contract opportunities Heathrow provides. The event coincides with Export Week (9-13 November), a yearly event which encourages more UK-based businesses to export and highlights the benefits to the UK of a strong export market.
The Heathrow Business Summit provides a unique opportunity for SMEs to trade face-to-face with the airport’s supply chain and connect to growing opportunities locally, nationally and internationally. All participating SMEs will have the opportunity to take part in speed-dating style sessions with procurement managers representing businesses based here at Heathrow and within Heathrow’s supply chain.
This year’s Summit also hosted the “Exporting is GREAT” roadshow, a national roadshow reaching out to UK companies with qualified, expert advise on how to make the first steps to exporting products.
Over the course of its lifetime, the not-for-profit Business Summit has helped companies win new business worth an estimated £90 million. To expand on this success, this year Heathrow launched its Business Summit North to connect more northern SME’s to the airport’s supply chain.
Ian Ballentine, Heathrow Procurement Director said:
“We started the Heathrow Business Summit 18 year ago to leverage the strength of Heathrow as the UK’s biggest port. Over 400 companies already operate at Heathrow and £600 billion’s worth in trade, a quarter of the UK’s non -EU exports by value passes through the airport each year. SMEs have a tremendous stake and opportunity in Heathrow. Today’s Summit will be instrumental in enabling the local supply chain to better connect with our major partners directly, allowing new ways to connect the supply chain to economic opportunities at home, and abroad.”