Destination Coventry
Destination Coventry

Inaugural Coventry & Warwickshire Meet the Supplier Event

A trio of leading regional organisations have joined forces to provide support and advice to businesses that supply the tourism, leisure, hospitality and events industry.

Destination Coventry, Shakespeare’s England and Warwickshire County Council have partnered to help suppliers get in front of venues, attractions and event professionals from across the region.

An exhibition has been organised for suppliers to showcase their services and the event will also provide expert insight into how local businesses can gain a foothold in the tourism, leisure and hospitality market.

Led by Destination Coventry, the inaugural Coventry & Warwickshire Meet the Supplier Event will take place at Stratford Racecourse on Thursday, April 27 to highlight the region’s very best suppliers to the industry.

It is expected to attract  many businesses from local food and drink providers and producers, to tourism and events industry suppliers, as well as marketing professionals, buyers and decision makers from hotels, attractions and venues across Coventry and Warwickshire.

The event will also feature two panel discussions, which will seek to encourage attendees to source from local suppliers and provide advice for exhibitors on how to become a preferred supplier to a hospitality business.

The first panel - titled ‘Sourcing local, why?’ - will see panellists from hospitality organisations and venues provide insight into how they have used local suppliers, the benefits that this has brought to their business and the impact using local suppliers has on the local economy.

And the second panel session of the day will provide advice for suppliers on working with procurement teams, as well as key factors to consider such as industry standards, quality control and supply and demand, and also how organisations such as the Chamber of Commerce, local authorities and  destination management organisations can help suppliers to meet buyers.

Paul Jones, managing director of Destination Coventry, said: “It’s been an incredibly difficult few years for suppliers across the sector and it’s vital that we do everything that we can to ensure that they get the support and visibility they need to thrive.

“Local hero products can set businesses apart from their national competitors, and using local suppliers can be more sustainable and bring a wider positive benefit to the regional economy.

“We are proud to have partnered with Shakespeare’s England and Warwickshire County Council on this event, and by working collaboratively we can provide the best possible support to suppliers across the region.” 

Helen Peters, chief executive at Shakespeare’s England, added: “Many tourism businesses are now surging back towards pre-pandemic levels of trade, and now is the ideal time for suppliers to this sector to explore how they can support hotels, restaurants and attractions as they gear up for a bumper summer of trade.

“Business and organisations need to be working collaboratively to help our wider region to fulfil its potential – as is the case with Shakespeare’s England, Destination Coventry and Warwickshire County Council – and we are hoping this is replicated in the wider business community over the coming months.”  

David Ayton-Hill, Warwickshire County Council’s Assistant Director for Communities, said: “The County Council has long been aware of the benefits brought by creating a network opportunity for all those in the food, tourism and hospitality sectors. 

“This event will build on connections achieved in previous campaign years of Warwickshire Food and Drink. The wider business community of Warwickshire recognises the importance of this sector strength as part of county’s unique offer. 

"Previous campaigns on #buyandeatlocal have illustrated both the economic sense and environmental sense of local businesses accessing produce from our high-quality local suppliers.  We're pleased to be helping to make this happen."

The Coventry & Warwickshire Meet the Supplier event is sponsored by Events by Amadeus and will run from 10am to 3pm on 27 April.

It is free to attend and free to exhibit for Destination Coventry and Shakespeare’s England members. Local suppliers can also exhibit for a fee of £75+VAT.

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