London Heathrow Airport has invited small and medium-size enterprises (SME) to reconnect with its £188bn (US$202bn) supply chain.
This call comes as the airport has relaunched its annual business summit. It has been three years since the 23rd edition took place in 2019, with proceedings postponed as the Covid-19 pandemic took hold. In 2019, approximately £188bn (US$202bn) of trade traveled through the airport alongside 80 million passengers. The 24th edition of the business summit is scheduled to take place on November 15, 2022, at the London Heathrow Marriott Hotel and is intended to enable SMEs to discover opportunities at Heathrow and learn about how they can be a part of a sustainable supply chain.
The summit is one of a range of initiatives Heathrow has established to rebuild its supply chain sustainably. The airport’s recently refreshed sustainability strategy – Heathrow 2.0: Connecting People and Planet – sets out how barriers to entry will be removed as well as a commitment to grow the proportion of SMEs in the airport’s supply chain from 40% to 50. The summit will take place in partnership with local Chambers of Commerce, business groups and local stakeholders. It will be a unique opportunity for larger suppliers to showcase procurement opportunities and for SMEs to discover new networks.
Paul Britton, CEO at Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group, said, “We are excited to see Heathrow’s Business Summit back up and running. As has always been the case, this Summit provides a fantastic opportunity for Thames Valley businesses to connect with the largest employer in West London and seek out new opportunities. We look forward to our members showcasing the very best of our local SMEs and commerce once again.”
Helen Elsby, chief solutions officer at Heathrow, said, “While the last two years have presented an immense challenge for SMEs and local airport communities, we now have a huge opportunity to build back in a way that everyone can benefit from. That is why we are so keen for new SMEs to join our existing supply chain. It is also why this year’s Business Summit is so exciting – we will be showcasing ways in which SMEs can get involved in creating a more sustainable, more resilient and more innovative airport that can benefit Britain for decades to come.”