Latest News | 21 February 2024

Celebrating Derby’s place in the world

Ocean King
Two Chevrons CIC
University of Derby
Vic Handley
Derby City Council
AV IT Media
Smith of Derby
Royal Crown Derby
Derby Theatre
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Derby is a city with many connections with the world – and some of these were celebrated at Marketing Derby’s Annual Business Event.

Yesterday morning, 450 people came to Derby Theatre to enjoy the investment promotion agency’s annual showcase, detailing some of Derby’s top achievements and business collaborations over the past 12 months, while giving an insight into the city’s regeneration pipeline.

Entitled The World in Derby, this year’s event celebrated the mutual contribution in community, culture and economy, between the city and the wider world.

Featuring speeches, presentations, interviews, films and more, the packed audience were updated on the city key schemes and future projects, while at the same inspired by individual stories.

John Forkin, managing director of Marketing Derby, said: “Derby has a proud track record of giving to the world in terms of doing business globally through companies like Rolls-Royce, Royal Crown Derby and Smith of Derby.

“But we’re equally proud that people come in to Derby. It’s a two-way street. People from across the world make Derby their home, they contribute to the city – and they become part of our community.”

Sarah Brigham, chief executive and artistic director at Derby Theatre, took to the stage to share exciting plans to revamp the venue, which towards the end of last year was awarded £10 million of Levelling Up cash.

John Forkin then discussed highlights from Marketing Derby’s latest annual report.

He also shared the recent news that Derby’s strategy for attracting overseas investment had been named the best in the UK – and third best in Europe – in the FT’s fDi European Cities and Regions of the Future 2024 rankings.

He then introduced a new film called ‘Derby City Showreel’, created especially for this year’s ABE by AV IT Media, which showcased key new developments taking place in Derby at the moment.

Councillor Baggy Shanker, leader of Derby City Council, in conversation with Marketing Derby chairman Bob Betts, talked about some of the key city centre schemes currently being built, which are due to come on stream in 2025 – which he has dubbed as “Derby’s Olympic year”.

This was followed by an interview with the inspirational Vic Handley, conducted by HUUB founder Dean Jackson.

At the tender age of 70, later this year Vic will row the Atlantic Ocean, single-handed, in aid of local charities.

Professor Kathryn Mitchell, vice-chancellor and chief executive at the University of Derby, then told the audience about its new Derby Business School, which is rapidly rising out of the ground.

ABE attendees also witnessed the announcement of Marketing Derby’s new Rising Star for 2024 – Two Chevrons Group.

And Marketing Derby’s Amy Burton and Adam Rodgers took to the stage to tell attendees all about the new-look Derby City Lab, which is set to open to the public in the Derbion shopping centre from Monday 4 March.

Finally, Steven Thai, managing director of Ocean King delivered the ever-popular Dare to Dream slot – telling the inspirational story of how he left Vietnam with his family to escape persecution – and went on to set up his own multi-million pound frozen food wholesale business in the UK which has recently located in Derby.

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