UK – GEC Event At ACC Liverpool Generates £560k For City

The main summit day of Europe’s first Global Entrepreneurship Congress (GEC), held at ACC Liverpool this month, generated more than half-a-million pounds for the city’s economy, initial economic impact figures have revealed.

Around 3,000 international delegates from 125 countries attended the summit at the waterfront venue, home to BT Convention Centre and Echo Arena, to hear from a high-profile cast of speakers including Virgin tycoon Sir Richard Branson (image), former Deputy Prime Minister Lord Michael Heseltine, dotcom pioneer Martha Lane Fox and Sir Terry Leahy, former Tesco CEO. Award-winning Liverpool comedian John Bishop quizzed Ian Ayre, managing director of Liverpool Football Club, as part of the main day’s event on 13 March.

Bob Prattey, chief executive of ACC Liverpool, said: “The Global Entrepreneurship Congress proved to be a fantastic opportunity to showcase all that Liverpool has to offer to a worldwide audience of business people and budding entrepreneurs. We were delighted to host the main event which alone generated significant economic impact for the city through accommodation bookings and delegates’ spend.”

An online survey carried out with delegates since GEC has revealed that the main day was regarded as ‘inspirational‘ and Liverpool is seen as an ‘entrepreneurial’ city.

The survey found that the main day GEC event was an overwhelming success, with 85% of attendees stating the event had met their expectations, of which 20% thought it had exceeded expectations

Max Steinberg, chief executive of Liverpool Vision, who with the Kauffman Foundation hosted GEC, said: “Liverpool’s GEC proved to be the largest event of its kind ever to be held anywhere in the world and it has been a resounding success. We have created a real legacy for the city while raising the bar for future GEC host cities.”

The Kauffman Foundation – the world’s largest foundation dedicated to entrepreneurship – also hailed GEC 2012 its best ever conference with Jonathan Ortmans, Chair of GEC, stating: “The limelight remains with the people of Liverpool who beyond all being of good cheer showed courage and smarts in figuring out how to host such an extraordinary event. “

The event led to an explosion of social media, with ‘GEC 2012’ as well as ‘Sir Richard Branson’ trending on Twitter.

The GEC was part of a wider week-long Festival of Entrepreneurship that featured 80 events across the city.