New format expos to actively broker business relationships

On the back of decades of successful business development expos, Reed Exhibitions has announced two new format business exhibition titles, designed to foster business growth through support in the areas where it is most commonly needed: business skills and relationship development.

The two new exhibitions, #BuyaBusiness Expo and Small Business Expo, will be staged at the Ticketpro Dome in Northriding Johannesburg from the 8th -10th September 2016.

Announcing the new events in Johannesburg, Reed Exhibitions MD Carol Weaving noted that the needs of entrepreneurs and small businesses had changed over the years, with practical business advice and strategic introductions to key networking partners now vital in getting start-ups off the ground. “We have done a lot of research with our clients and taken many of their comments into consideration to ensure we meet business development needs. As industry trends and economic times change, we need to keep re-inventing and staying ahead of the game. Gone are the days of static exhibitions – it’s now all about relationship brokering.”

Tshepo Phakathi, Group CEO of Phakathi Holdings, and keynote speaker at the launch of the expos, whose KAELLO initiative promotes entrepreneurship and mentors thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs, believes that in light of growing unemployment and a tough economic climate, small business needs all the help it can get in order to thrive. His key message to entrepreneurs is: In order to succeed in business, “it’s not what happens – it’s what you do.” Knowledge sharing and networking such as those to be fostered at the expos are crucial, he says.

With an expert advisory board now in place to develop the event programmes, Reed Exhibitions is drawing on a combination of expert advice and its own extensive experience and research to ensure the events make a significant contribution to the growth of the event participants’ businesses.

The first appointments to the Advisory Board include:

  • Kizito Okechukwu, Executive Head, Sustainable Entrepreneur Accelerator (SEA) Africa;
  • Kobus Oosthuizen, Founder & MD, SA Franchise Warehouse;
  • Brian Walsh, Founder, the REAL Entrepreneur™ Institute;
  • Carol Weaving, MD, Reed Exhibitions.

The new titles, actively seeking to deliver lasting business benefits, will be co-located to offer attendees an in-depth business perspective. However, their focus areas will be slightly different. #BuyaBusiness expo will connect entrepreneurs, operators and investors who are looking to grow, diversify or enter business partnerships with one of the many business and franchise opportunities to be showcased. Small Business Expo is devoted to the development and growth of small and medium enterprises by providing an opportunity for them to market themselves and interact with corporates, investors and buyers.

Both events will deliver numerous engagement and communications opportunities that participants would not enjoy if acting in isolation: partners and exhibitors will have access to new ‘Business Speed Dating’ sessions, an Ice Breaker networking function and an Online Business Matchmaking Diary to ensure they maximize their networking opportunities with investors and potential partners at the event. They will also be given an online profile and exhibition guide exposure, benefit from marketing and media exposure, and access to training, workshops and events. Investors and franchisees will be given a range of benefits to ensure they make the most of opportunities to engage with exhibitors, so delivering maximum business lead development.

Among the highlights of the #BuyaBusiness and Small Business Expo will be:

  • Business Speed Dating sessions
  • An all-new Investors & Operators club for high profile investors and business partners
  • Networking functions
  • Development Den workshops on business trends and strategy, management, financial and digital
  • Business Bootcamp workshops for early stage start-ups
  • Full on Franchising Theatre workshops hosted by SA Franchise Warehouse
  • Techpreneur Pavilion for tech-based small business and entrepreneurs
  • Wealth Masterclasses
  • The Chat Room networking lounge and internet café