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FSB National Conference and Small Business Expo 2015 - Birmingham

The Birmingham ICC hosted the FSB Small Business Expo and National Conference from 19 – 21 March 2015. Another roaring success the three day event attracted more non-members than ever before and provided a great platform for members to share in all the work FSB does.

Top politicians give General Election pitch to FSB members

Members of the Federation of Small Businesses were given "a final" opportunity to quiz top politicians from the three major parties ahead of the General Election. Chancellor George Osborne, Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg and Labour leader Ed Miliband made a last ditch appeal for the small business vote at one of the biggest conferences in FSB history.

Up to 1,000 members attended the two-day event at Birmingham's International Conference Centre, which attracted media interest from across the globe.

More than 40 journalists from the UK, US, Germany and Turkey covered the event, while ITN provided a live satellite feed for all broadcasters. FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry said: "This is a fantastic last opportunity for our members to quiz senior politicians from all three major parties ahead of the General Election.”

"We all want to hear what they have to tell us and how they will support us should they get into power."

FSB National Conference is a media hit!

The FSB National Conference set the agenda in the news. Dozens of Broadcast print and online journalists reported on the speeches made at the event, kicking off with the Today Programme on Radio 4. National newspapers including The Times, Daily Express, Guardian, Financial Times and Daily Mail all reported on the speeches delivered by our key note speakers. Headlines included 'Parties seek to woo UK small company bosses', 'Ed Miliband pledge to champion small firms' and 'Politicians to join pre-election business summit'.

Small Businesses also made waves on social media with #FSBConf trending worldwide on Twitter. In Birmingham small businesses really showed how big their voice can be.

DSC_0111, Chris Hughes, Blacksmith, 'Chris the Smith' _DSC2761, Kriss Akabusi, Motivational Speaker DSC_0095, Presenting Seminar 'What Difference can Mentoring Make' _DSC2004, Sue Nelson, Kent & Medway Region, asking question of Ed Miliband _DSC2652, Kriss Akabusi, Motivational Speaker _DSC2634, Kriss Akabusi, interacting with the audience _DSC2564, Nigel Eaton _DSC2557, Nigel Eaton, Head of SME, Visa Europe, Main Sponsors of FSB Conference _DSC2546, Albert Wright, North London Branch, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2543, Sue Towner, Chairman North Surrey, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2538, Matt Dredger addresses Question Time panel _DSC2536, Karen Bellion, Liverpool Knowsley Branch Chairman, addresses Question Time panel _DSC1861, PY Gerbeau _DSC2532, Richard Asghar-Sandys, Herefordshire Branch Chairman, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2496, Karl Craig-West, Leicester Northants & Rutland Region, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2491, Russell Warner, Gloucestershire & West of England Region, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2009, Patricia Marks, Somerset & Wiltshire Region, asking question of Ed Miliband _DSC2485, David Holdsworth, Chairman Calderdale Branch, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2478, Judi Brazkiewicz, Worcestershire Branch, addresses Question Time Panel _DSC2456, Ted Salmon, Regional Chairman, North East, addresses Question Time panel _DSC2452, Brian Woods, Regional Vice Chairman, Surrey & West Sussex addresses Question Time panel _DSC2449, David Shephard, Regional Chairman Devon, addressing Question Time panel _DSC2426, Lord Stoneham, Anthea McIntyre MEP, Conservative and Mike Cherry FSB Policy Director, Question Time Panel members _DSC2424, Question Time Debate, Simon Jack, Host, Khalid Mahmood MP Labour, Howard Allen Green Party _DSC2416, Question Time Debate panel members _DSC2407, Ty Smith, Head of SMEs at Arval, launches FSB Vehicle Services _DSC2373, David Perry and Dave Stallon _DSC2353, Norman Lay and Tim Lazenby _DSC2322, Pete Glancy, Scottish Widows _DSC2296, Paul Baker, FSB Pension Scheme for Members _DSC2058, Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Opposition _DSC2048, Andrew Postlethwaite, Chairman Teignbridge Branch, asking question of Ed Miliband _DSC1506, Simon Jack, Host, Conference Opens _DSC1998, Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Opposition _DSC1994, Stefan Baddreau of Simply IT asking question of Ed Miliband _DSC1975, Anne-Marie Abbott, East Yorkshire Branch, asking question of  Ed Miliband _DSC1964, Raul Mancera, Chairman North East London Branch, asking question of Ed Miliband _DSC1939, Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Opposition _DSC1906, Question to PY Gerbeau _DSC1791, Craig Morgan, Lancashire & Cumbria Region, asking question of Nick Clegg _DSC1779, Sue Terpilowski, Chairman, London Policy Committee, Asking question of Nick Clegg _DSC1720, Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP, Deputy Prime Minister _DSC1667, Antonio Falco, Regional Chairman, Surrey & West Sussex, Asking question of George Osborne _DSC1643, Judi Brazkiewicz, FSB Board of Directors, Asking question of George Osborne _DSC1626, Peter Ashton, Devon, Asking question of George Osborne _DSC1617, Richard Asghar-Sands, Regional Chairman, Shropshire Herefordshire & Worcesterdshire, asking question of George Osborne _DSC1568, George Osborne _DSC1545 Nigel Eaton, Senior Vice President, Visa Europe _DSC1534, Councillor Shafique Shah, Lord Mayor of Birmingham _DSC1525, Ian Irwin, Regional Chairman, Staffs & West Midlands _DSC1512, John Allan, Conference Opens DSC_9791, Steve Venables, Independent Financial Services DSC_9778, Exhibition Hall DSC_9784, FSB Care stand DSC_9627, Mike Cherry, National Policy Committee Chairman and Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Opposition DSC_9711, Geoff Burch sharing the secrets of success DSC_9461, David Stallon, Honorary National Secretary DSC_9678, Friday, Inside the conference hall DSC_9623, Seminar 3, Helen Carmichael, Inverness, John Sear, University of Birmingham, Digital Humanities Hub, Kate Jeremy, University of Birmingham, Digital Humanities Hub DSC_9652, Inside the conference hall, Friday DSC_9485, PY Gerbeau with Corporal Ian Mills, Spr Stacey Alcock, Army Employer Engagement DSC_9475, PY Gerbeau and Julian Perkin, Visa Stand DSC_9424, Attendees, a Taste of Birmingham, Iconic Birmingham Library DSC_9380, Dancing at A Taste of Birmingham DSC_9357, A Taste of Birmingham DSC_9334, A Taste of Birmingham DSC_0225, Rachel Elnaugh, Riding the Entrepreneurial Wave DSC_0228, Attendees enjoying Rachel Elnaugh's presentation DSC_0115, Chris Poad presenting 'The Power of Technology Platforms' Seminar