A campaign to promote Leicestershire’s outstanding logistics and distribution sector is being spearheaded by East Midlands Airport (EMA) in the Leicester Business Festival from 29 October to 9 November.
Leicestershire is the prime location for distribution and logistics firms. Falling within eastern side of the logistics ‘Golden Triangle’ – formed by the M1, M42 and M6 motorways, 95 per cent of the UK population can be accessed within a four-hour drive.
Being sandwiched by a superb road network, makes Leicestershire the ideal location for logistics and distribution companies to be based. As a result, two of Europe’s largest distribution hubs: Magna Park in Lutterworth and the East Midlands Distribution Centre near Castle Donington, have been established in the area in the past few years.
Complementing the excellent road network, is the region’s local airport – East Midlands Airport, which connects nearly five million passengers to more than 80 destinations every year. It is also the UK’s busiest pure cargo airport, transporting around 1,000 tonnes of cargo a day to destinations all over the world and is the base for the UK operations of two of the world’s top four air express freight operators, DHL and UPS.
EMA is playing a leading part in the Business Festival as a sponsor and sector lead for Logistics and Distribution.
Chris Hayton (pictured below) Head of Corporate Affairs at East Midlands Airport said, "More than 90% of England and Wales is within a 4-hour drive of the airport, placing us at the very heart of the country for passengers and cargo alike.
“Leicester & Leicestershire’s distribution and logistics sector employs a staggering 42,800 people - from drivers and logistics planners to pilots, cargo handlers and packers, working for companies like DHL, UPS, FedEx, East Midlands Airport, Scania, CEVA logistics and Royal Mail, handling thousands of tonnes of cargo every single day. The sector keeps people, planes, trains, trucks and products moving around the city, county, nation and globe; supporting and enabling this region’s businesses to trade around the world.
“With numerous world-leading companies in our region and the rapid growth of e-commerce and logistics, there is great potential for the airport to work even more closely with local businesses to support our region’s continued growth. The Business Festival is a brilliant way to bring the importance of the distribution and logistics sector in commerce and everyday life into the spotlight.”
On 8 November, EMA bosses will be asking businesses what they need from their local Airport, in an event entitled ‘Global Leicester - aviation symposium’. Companies that use air travel for business will be able to speak directly to the operators about more personalised, corporate flights.
EMA is also opening its doors to local food and drink businesses on 7 November for a ‘once in a blue moon’ opportunity to get their products on the airport’s supplier list, in their event 'From Farm to Forks at 37,000 feet.'
These are just two of the distribution and logistics events in this year’s Festival. The Leicester Business Festival is the region’s largest business event, that will see 119 events and 10,000 attendees over the fortnight.
Events are completely free to attend, but tickets must be booked in advance through the website or via the LBF App which is free to download from the Apple Store or Google Play.
Along with headline partners, Leicester Castle Business School, the 2018 Festival has the support of well-known business organisations including East Midlands Chamber; LLEP Business Gateway; East Midlands Airport; Brewin Dolphin; University of Leicester School of Business; Highcross and the FSB.
Other supporters include Everards Brewery; De Montfort University; Pattersons Commercial Law; Growth Partners PLC and the Institute of Directors, as well as official app partner Infonote, AV media partner, The Presentation Group, Coffee partner, 200 Degrees; and media partners, Cross Productions and Capital Radio.