Latest News

Invitation to the International Business Festival in Liverpool in June 2018 from COBCOE

10th April 2018

The International Business Festival 2018 takes place in Liverpool from 12 to 28 June. It will bring together around 30,000 business representatives, entrepreneurs and specialists from around the world.

Surrey Chambers of Commerce are supporting the COBCOE Conference on 12 June through our affiliation with COBCOE – the Council of British Chambers of Commerce in Europe. This event, hosted in partnership with HSBC, will open the festival and will bring together senior UK government ministers with business leaders and high-level diplomats from across Europe and beyond.

Big changes are coming to the world of business and everyone needs to prepare. The pattern of international trade and the geopolitical landscape is shifting, while more disruptive technologies are on the way.

The COBCOE conference, entitled ‘We need to talk about… The Global Future of Business’ is for businesses that want to plan for a prosperous future. The aim is to provide a new understanding of what the future holds by hearing first-hand from UK government ministers and senior business representatives.

The one-day conference will cover a broad range of topics, including:

  • What the desired Brexit agreement will look like
  • Government strategies to promote skills, productivity, FDI and UK-EU trade after Brexit
  • Changes to supply chains and changes to the way we work brought about by new trade relationships, new technologies and the rise of Central Eastern Europe
  • How UK and European businesses can compete in fast-changing global markets

The conference will also provide a unique opportunity for international networking with business representatives who will be attending from across the COBCOE network and beyond.

Speakers include:

  • Senior UK Government ministers (to be confirmed)
  • Helen Brand OBE, CEO Association of Chartered Certified Accountants
  • Christopher Dottie, Managing Director Spain, Hays
  • Wouter Schuitemaker, Managing Director, EMEA, Hickey & Associates
  • Paul Hardy, Brexit Director, DLA Piper
  • Daniel Shillito, President, British Chamber of Commerce for Italy
  • Anton Valk CBE, Chairman, Netherlands British Chamber of Commerce
  • Andrew Wrobel, Editor, Emerging Europe
  • David Thomas MBE, Chairman, COBCOE
  • Stephen Phipson CBE, CEO, EEF

Discount code on ticket price

The full entry fee is £150 before 20 April and £180 after that. Surrey Chambers of Commerce members can receive a 15% discount on the entry fee for the COBCOE Conference. This means that Surrey Chamber members get access to the conference for £125. All prices given include 20% VAT.

Other conferences at the festival may charge additional entry fees.

To book your ticket, please click here.

About the International Business Festival

Hosted every two years in its home city of Liverpool, the festival gives businesses the space, support and expertise to make connections and realise their potential. It takes place on nine days over three weeks, with a different growth industry theme for each day. This year, there will be 50 major events and over 200 world-class speakers.

There will also be an international marketplace, a festival incubator, talks from leading business minds, an innovation hub and brokered business meetings at the festival to help businesses find the contacts they need. We hope you will join us.

To find out more, please contact or go online to