Organisers of the Business Innovation South Expo have secured a backup date in 2021 in case the coronavirus crisis prevents it going ahead this September.

The event was originally due to go ahead in May and has been rescheduled to September 23 at the Hilton Hotel, West End, Southampton, near the Ageas Bowl.

With the agreement of the Hilton and all the companies involved so far, organisers have firmly reserved a back-up date of April 28, 2021. The aim is to give visitors and exhibitors confidence when they book that there will be an expo in exactly the same format either this year or next.

The Business Innovation South Expo has already gained support from exhibitors, sponsors, speakers and key regional organisations. It aims to showcase businesses across the central south operating in the STEM and innovation sectors and aligned service providers.

There are currently 31 exhibitors booked, 11 speakers or workshops and two panel debates.

Lara Bull, the business woman behind #BIS2020, said: “The response has been wonderful and I think many businesses are keen to have events to attend in the diary for late September either as exhibitors or visitors.

“In response to the lock-down impact on businesses for those companies who are keen to exhibit I am offering a three-stage payment plan to help spread the stand cost which remains an all-inclusive package.

“The expo is aimed at providing an affordable showcase for companies in STEM and innovation and their aligned service providers across the central south and for our visitors the vision is to create a forum for decision makers/procurement execs to see the latest technology, products and services available to help drive their business forward.”

Speakers will include:

● David Fletcher, assistant director of Economic Development at Hampshire County Council, on the topic of A Place Story for Hampshire

● Mark Round, client technical lead at IBM, on Smarter Business with 5G.

● Pamela Iannotti, senior lecturer at Winchester Business School, on SME Competitivity– Gaining the Edge in a Digital Era.

There will also be speaker panels focusing on such subjects as Navigating the Path to Becoming Sustainable. Hampshire Chamber of Commerce will host Chamber of Solutions, bringing together senior leaders from the chamber for an “ask the experts” session on growth issues.

There will be eight workshops running during the day, including Digital Acceleration, HR Urban Myths That Are Hurting Your Business; Creating the Perfect Content Strategy; How to Lead Innovators; Effective Cyber Security Planning; Financial Opportunities and Pitfalls for Start-Ups and Scale-Ups; and Intellectual Property: Getting the Basics Right. There is a £5 charge to secure a place at the workshops.

Details are at