DIB set to expand as it celebrates a record year

Private sector lobby group and business networking club Downtown in Business (DIB) has announced further expansion plans, as it emerges from the pandemic stronger than ever.

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100 plus new members, 20 new partners, and expansion into new cities planned.

The organisation, which currently operates in Liverpool, Manchester, Lancashire, Leeds, Birmingham, Cheshire, and London, will open offices in another eight cities across the UK over the next three years. 

DIB Chief Executive and Group chairman Frank Mckenna explained:

“We have worked hard to ensure that we did not ‘shut up shop’ as many others in our space felt they were forced to do during the COVID crisis. This has resulted in us enjoying record sales for every month so far this year, recruiting an additional 100 plus members across the country, and attracting a host of new partners.

“Atkins, Avison Young, Laing O’ Rourke, Kier, Morgan Sindall, Project 4, OBI, Krol Corlett, Say It With Diamonds, ITS Technology Group, and Muse are among a range of new 2021 DIB sponsors, alongside Procure Partnerships Framework, Legacie, Crossfield, Stay City, Reciprocal Solutions, PFP Energy, Glenville Walker & Partners, and Sedulo. They join existing partners such as Bruntwood, Brock Carmichael, the European Space Agency, Mersey Rail, and High Performance Consultancy to add further value to the Downtown network.          

“Since the first lockdown last March DIB has delivered a number of milestones:

  • DIB has hosted more in-person events than any other business networking organisation in the country over the past sixteen months.
  • DIB has hosted over 160 online events, attracting over 3,000 business leaders ‘virtually’ in the Downtown Den’.
  • DIB produced a Manifesto ‘Unlocking Enterprise & Entrepreneurship in the UK’ – a 30-step recovery plan post-lockdown that was presented to the government.
  • We produced a Devolution & Infrastructure’ ‘White Paper.
  • DIB hosted the ONLY in-person business awards event in the last sixteen-months.  
  • We have been commissioned to establish All Party Parliamentary Groups in Lancashire and Cheshire.
  • We have recruited over 100 new members and 20 new partners.

“As ever,  the speakers we have attracted to our events have been of the highest calibre, among them the chief executives of Leeds, Liverpool, and Manchester City Council’s, the Leader of Manchester City Council, Sir Richard Leese, the heads of Investment and Marketing for Manchester, Leeds, Lancashire, and Liverpool, the chief executive of Bruntwood Chris Oglesby, Birmingham MP Jess Phillips, Gary Neville, Lord Michael Heseltine, and the London Deputy Mayor for planning & regeneration Jules Pipe.

“Now the shackles are almost entirely off we will be offering the best business events programme around. Highlights for the remainder of this year include awards events in Birmingham, Manchester, and Liverpool, a national Planning, Property & Regeneration conference at the Belfry, a Lancashire Business Conference, and a Transport, Infrastructure & Construction parliamentary reception at Westminster.

“Next year we will be looking to establish the Downtown brand in three new cities, with Wolverhampton, Newcastle, and Sheffield high on our agenda as potential new locations.

“It is a really exciting time for Downtown, and we are determined to meet our objective of becoming one of the most influential business voices in the country.”        

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