Connecting with UK Small Businesses: 39th annual Federation of Small Business Conference

The Federation of Small Business (FSB) is the UK’s leading business organisation and understands that small businesses are essential to the local community, generating wealth, employments and opportunities. Dell is a proud partner of the FSB, and I recently had the pleasure of attending the 39th annual Federation of Small Business Conference 2013 which took place on 21-23rd March 2013 in Leicester. The conference brought together a number of high-profile business leaders as well as politicians for collaborative discussion about small businesses and what can be done to increase their protection and growth. The impressive line-up of speakers included Right Honourable Vince Cable announcing his plans for a state bank which will help bring billions of pounds of aid together to help starved small businesses secure finance and a speech from Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna who focused on combating energy contract rollovers and late payments.

The conference kicked off on Thursday 21st March with a speech from the FSB National Chairman, John Walker. The day also included a number of business speakers and senior politicians from the Coalition Government and the Opposition.


BBC financial journalist Naga Munchetty hosted a live Question Time panel with Leicester South MP Jon Ashworth and Nicky Morgan MP for Loughborough, together with Leicester Mercury Business Editor Ian Griffin and FSB National Policy Chairman Mike Cherry. Together, the panel debated headline business issues such as the growth restrictions to business triggered by disproportionate charging by gas and electricity providers. The panel then answered burning questions from the audience.

Throughout the conference, Dell and Intel hosted an Internet Cafe equipped with the latest touch-screen technology including Latitude 10 and XPS 10 tablets, as well as the Dell XPS 12 Convertible Ultrabook. As in previous years, Dell IT expert Mark Harrison was on hand to offer practical advice and demonstrate some of the exciting business features. Dell also conducted an interactive technology quiz, which provided conference goers a chance to take home either an XPS 10 tablet, Latitude 10 or a Latitude E5430 professional business laptop – all of which equipped with Intel Small Business Advantage.

As this year’s event proved, the FSB conference continues to play a vital role in bringing together some of the most influential leaders in the UK business space to debate the key issues shaping the UK economy and to affect real change in the industry.


It was really great to attend the event and be part of what the FSB is trying to achieve, which very much aligns with our commitment to helping small and medium businesses grow and better serve their customers by drawing greater value from technology. You can find out more about our programs for small businesses and entrepreneurs at and, or by following us on @DellSMBUK.

About the Author: Andrew Miller