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International Festival for Business kicks off in Liverpool

Chancellor George Osborne opens festival, expected to attract 30,000 delegates and generate £265m economic impact

The International Festival for Business 2016 (IFB2016) opened this week at Exhibition Centre Liverpool for three weeks that will showcase British innovation and expertise to a global audience. 

The second bi-annual festival, which brings together more than 30,000 delegates, kicked off with a keynote speech from chancellor George Osborne.

“IFB2016 is a celebration of business; it allows UK businesses to reach out around the world, selling what we make and creating jobs and investment in the country,” Osborne said.

More than 1,600 delegates attended the opening day of the festival, which is set to have an estimated economic impact of £265 million.

Max Steinberg, chair of IFB2016, said: “IFB2016 will be the biggest festival of its type in the world. It builds on the exceptional success of the inaugural festival in 2014 and promises to be even more exciting. 

“Packed into three weeks we have an exceptional array of 80 events, thought provoking talks on the Blue Skies stage and a GREAT British Showcase that highlights the best UK innovation, design and creativity. Starting today the festival will be a place where ideas are shared, connections made and deals done.” 

Speakers throughout the three weeks include business secretary Sajid Javid, former South African president FW De Klerk, Skype co-founder Jaan Tallin and EU Commission vice president Valdis Dombrovskis.

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