Ruth Carver: Taking Lincolnshire global at MIPIM

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MIPIM, the global property expo, which takes place every spring in Cannes, is a fantastic opportunity for us to put Greater Lincolnshire in the shop window for all the world to see.

We’ve been attending MIPIM for four years now and this year was one of the most successful visits yet.

Not only did we once again bring together Team Lincolnshire– an affiliation of of Lincolnshire County Council, the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership and 30 private-sector sponsors – but for the first time we exhibited inside the new Midlands UK Pavilion.

The Midlands Pavilion provided a more joined-up approach to pulling investment into the whole Midlands region and reflected the growing momentum that is building behind the Midlands Engine project.

The pavilion was located next to London’s exhibition on a busy through route to and from the main MIPIM building which was used by an estimated 80% of delegates, so we really were in the thick of the action!

Exhibiting inside the pavilion definitely gave us a higher profile and we saw an increase in footfall compared to last year with delegates wanting to find out more about the region and the investment opportunities on offer.

Establishing a dedicated Midlands Pavilion at MIPIM was a natural next step following last year’s event, when 11 LEPs in the Midlands united for the first time to launch the Midlands Engine Pitchbook – a prospectus showcasing 33 major development opportunities for investors.

While the pavilion gave us an enhanced platform for business leaders to collaborate with Midlands colleagues on an unprecedented scale, each individual LEP was encouraged to work independently to promote its potential to an international audience.

We also hosted events of our own, including our Lincolnshire networking brunch, featuring Lincolnshire sausages from Redhill Farm, which attracted around 130 hungry visitors.

We also participated in a Midlands Housing Challenge panel, a visitor economy panel and an event promoting enterprise zones, at which Greater Lincolnshire was able to showcase its three planned Food Enterprise Zones in Grimsby, Holbeach and Hemswell Cliff.

We know that Lincolnshire is a great place to live and work, and that’s why we were so pleased to be able to put our area on the world stage at MIPIM this year.

It was a great opportunity for us to forge new connections and promote our area to potential investors and developers as a place for them to grow their business.

I’m pleased to say that we came away with a number of significant leads and lots of interest from the hotel sector in particular.

MIPIM 2017 was incredibly successful for Greater Lincolnshire and we’re already planning how to make an even bigger splash at next year’s expo!