A MAJOR event showcasing innovation in Hampshire business has been put back to 2021.

The Business Innovation South Expo had been due to take place in at the Hilton Hotel at the Ageas Bowl, Southampton, in May and organisers initially moved it to today’s date.

It has now been booked into its reserve date of April 28, 2021, after “clarification” from government about when events could safely take place.

Lara Bull, the businesswoman behind the event, said she had been working with a host of safety experts.

“It has been a privilege to work with such inspiring companies to ensure the safety of everyone attending #BIS2021 and I’m truly grateful for all their support,” she said.

“We are already focussing on the many positives that will come out of the date being moved, not least of which is the opportunity to utilise the very latest technology to ensure everyone feels comfortable and confident to attend.

“Resilience and looking to the future is key for all of us at this time – and we look forward to #BIS2021 being better than ever.”

Business innovation event secures reserve date in 2021

Kevin Jones, owner of HSE National Ltd, carried out a risk assessment for the event and highlighted issues to be addressed. He has been advising companies on Covid-secure workplaces.

He said: “The first thing I looked at for Lara was the layout of the exhibition space and we realised we would need to take out two rows of exhibition space to make the space work in terms of social distancing.

“We have looked at how the breakfast and lunch for exhibitors will be served to ensure the food can be enjoyed safely and we are keeping up to date with guidelines as they are updated.”

Andrew Barnett, director of iTrack Global, is to provide its MediShield PPE to keep visitors and exhibitors safe.

He said: “The timing of the expo is perfect as UK innovation and UK technology will play a critical role in helping our economy and society recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

“We are looking forward to telling visitors more about our innovative smart PPE solutions and seeing some of the amazing ideas on show at the event.”

Pat Lawson, director of Southampton-based Corporate Needs, will be supplying all the sanitising products for the event.

The day before the expo opens, all surfaces will be sprayed with a sanitiser that kills microorganisms and forms a long-lasting protective barrier. On the day itself, a fast-acting antimicrobial hand sanitiser will be available for all to use.

Mr Lawson said: “Clearly there is huge interest now in how these products work and the level of protection they offer. Our surface sanitiser works for seven days and our hand sanitisers offer protection for four hours.

“We have already seen great innovations to meet the needs of business and more ideas are being developed to help everyone from taxi drivers to the hospitality industry."