In conversation with Paul Lancaster: Newcastle Startup Week and Newcastle Scaleup Summit

When I first started planning our 5-day, region wide and multi-venue ‘Newcastle Startup Week’ festival way back in September, the North East LEP were one of the first organisations to get behind us as they could see the value of creating a new event to inspire and encourage more people to start and grow a business in the North East.

Having spent almost 15 years helping other people start and grow their own business whilst working for local enterprise agencies, youth enterprise schemes, community groups and Government organisations, I know there’s a huge amount of advice, support and goodwill in our region and a close-knit business community of people who want others to succeed. Even so, if it’s not your job to be aware of what’s on offer, it can be difficult to know who and where to go for the best advice for your business which is why we set out to put everything on a plate in one week.

It was an ambitious event to put on, with many different aims, but I’m delighted to report that our event on 15-19 May 2017 was a huge success with over 600 people coming together across the week. One of the things I’m most pleased about was that we managed to attract people from the whole business community, of all ages and walks of life, from other regions and countries, and from many different sectors too. This wasn’t just a ‘tech’ conference. It was a festival for anyone with an idea for a new business or project, or who enjoys helping innovators and entrepreneurs bring their ideas to life and fulfil their potential.

Throughout the week, we saw new ideas emerge, connections being made, products launch, business partnerships form and money exchange and I’m happy to say this has continued to happen in the weeks since which is very exciting to see and something we will continue to help delegates with over the coming weeks and months.

Our first Newcastle Startup Week really worked, so my fantastic festival co-producer Sarah Crimmens and I have already started planning our next one in May/June 2018 which we expect will be an even bigger success for everyone involved! In the meantime, we’ll be running a 1-day ‘Newcastle Scaleup Summit’ at the Live Theatre on Thursday 23 November 2017 which will help delegates grow their business or at least see exactly what they need to do to move to the next level.

Going deeper into the topics we covered on our ‘Growing & Scaling’ day during Newcastle Startup Week (sales, marketing, PR, recruitment, innovation, mindset), our full-day Newcastle Scaleup Summit will feature a range of speakers in the morning who will share personal and practical insights on how they grew their own business, or can demo products, services or programmes they provide to help others fulfil their potential.

These will then be followed by facilitated workshops, breakout sessions and 1-2-1s where delegates can put the ideas into practise and immediately start using any products, services or programmes that will help them grow and scale.

We’re delighted to say that the North East LEP is already onboard as one of our Headline Sponsors and will be on hand to not only explain why ‘scaleups’ are important to the North East economy but show how businesses can benefit from the wide range of mentoring, coaching, training, networking and growth funding packages they are supporting from that day onwards.

A full schedule and speaker line-up will be announced soon but ‘Early Bird’ tickets are on sale now for just £80 at http://newcastlescaleupsummit.eventbrite.com

We look forward to seeing you there!

Paul Lancaster
(aka @lordlancaster)
Founder & Event Producer
Newcastle Startup Week +
Newcastle Scaleup Summit