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Midlands Entrepreneurs Worth £236 Million at Enterprisefest

Originally published 8 June 2001

The Mercia Institute of Enterprise, which links most of the region's Universities and is led by Warwick and Birmingham Universities, is mounting a special festival of enterprise at the University of Warwick's International Manufacturing Centre which will bring together students, researchers, and business people to meet some of the region's most successful entrepreneurs and learn about the vast range of opportunities available to support and fund those with a bright idea for a new business or product.

EnterpriseFest is a two-day event which features practical workshop sessions on how to set up and run your own business (including dot.com companies) and looks at common pitfalls in business. There will be workshops and seminars on all aspects of setting up your own business and running Enterprise programmes at universities. Iain Barker, who founded the Coventry-based company Team 121, is estimated to be worth £200m, and Andrew Wilson, an ex-Warwick University student who founded WAA plc, a £36m billings advertising agency, are just two of the successful entrepreneurs who EnterpriseFest delegates will have an opportunity to quiz during the event.

Other speakers will include Mike Yiannis, Arthur Andersen's top specialist in venture capital and raising finance; Professor Kumar Bhattacharyya, Director of Warwick Manufacturing Group, a multi-million pound engineering design, research and development business at the University of Warwick which he built from scratch; Ray Chamberlain, Chairman of Forward Group plc, built one of Europe's largest printed circuit board manufacturers; Stephen Hagen, Chairman of EnterpriseFest and Director of Mercia Institute of Enterprise. Formerly Professor of Applied Languages, he advises Government on international business communication; and Ederyn Williams, Director Warwick Ventures, who specialises in developing University spin-out companies.

There will also be representatives and exhibitions of Enterprise opportunities with Andersens, HSBC, Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber, and West Midlands Science Parks and Business Parks.

Students from the Midlands University in The Mercia Institute of Enterprise will be given free entry to EnterpriseFest. The cost for other delegates is £60 for the core conference.

Interview opportunity:
The following will be available for interview at 11am Friday 15th June: Stephen Hagen, Chairman of EnterpriseFest; Ray Chamberlain, Forward Group plc; Iain Barker, Logica; Joe Bradwell, Binding Site Lt; and Andrew Wilson, WAA plc.

For further details please contact:

Stephen Hagen, Director of Mercia Institute of Enterprise
Tel: 024 76528995 or by email info@enterprisefest.com

Further information about the above press release and all other media services at the University of Warwick can be obtained from:

Peter Dunn, Press Officer
University of Warwick
Coventry, CV4 7AL
West Midlands
Tel: 024 76 523708