Strategic partner

Explore the intelligence and capabilities needed to help your growing business succeed in the current climate, while enjoying 24hr hospitality alongside other business leaders.

Once again, the CBI, in partnership with BDO NI and Bank of Ireland, will bring together experts from across the business community, providing thought-provoking keynote addresses from 'real' business, lively panel discussions; and 'new for 2018', will be practical break-out sessions focusing on key issues affecting growing firms such a productivity, technology, exporting and Brexit.

The UK’s productivity gap is often cited as a key challenge that businesses need to address, to drive growth.  Since the financial crisis, UK productivity has lagged other developed nations and notably, the UK has fallen behind competitors such as France, Germany and the US.  Northern Ireland’s productivity level is 15% behind the rest of the UK.

The factors impacting productivity are varied and there are multiple levers from machinery and technology, to supply chain and skills.  However, management lies at the heart of the UK’s productivity challenge and productivity will only improve through a widespread sharing of best practice, enabling small and medium sized businesses to rise to the challenge. 

Why attend?

  • Intelligence to help your business succeed in the current climate.
  • Expert led discussion that considers ‘the business impact' and sharing of best practice.
  • Practical takeaways which can be implemented into your business.
  • From forging new connections to gaining the latest business insight, you will leave the conference better equipped and more confident to meet the challenges in your organisation.
  • This is a unique format of conference – set in the luxurious Slieve Donard Hotel and Spa over 24 hours including a networking dinner.

Speakers will include:

  • Georgina O’Leary, Director, Allstate and Fintech Envoy Northern Ireland
  • Mark O’Connell, Director, OCO Global
  • Annie Gascoyne, Head of Economic Policy, CBI
  • James Ashton-Bell, Head of Trade, International, CBI
  • Danny McCoy, Chief Executive, Ibec
  • Milan Topolic, Business Systems and Solutions Manager, Coca-Cola Hellenic Northern Ireland Ltd
  • John Ahern, Chairman, Indaver
  • John Conaghan, Group Director for Professional Services, Inspire Professional Services
  • Peter Shields, Director, Etain Limited
  • Susan Cleland, Commercial Lead, Centre of Competitiveness

Plus more to be announced

The event commences at 13:00hrs on Thursday 13 September and closes at 13:00hrs on 14 September

View the conference agenda

What's included?

Day 1 - 13 September

  • Access to all sessions and 121 engagement with all speakers
  • Lunch (from 13:00)
  • Afternoon tea / refreshments
  • Evening drinks reception
  • 4-course dinner with wine (incl. after-dinner speaker)
  • Bottled water and sweets are provided throughout the day.

Day 2 - 14 September

  • Access to all sessions
  • Private Breakfast with fellow conference delegates (Accommodation package only)
  • Mid-morning tea/scones
  • Lunch 
  • Bottled water and sweets are provided throughout the day.


Member Ticket -  CBI members are entitled to 1 complimentary place per organisation to attend on 13 and/or 14 September.  (This excludes accommodation and breakfast)

Member Additional Ticket / Non-Member – Additional member / non-member tickets can be purchased at £110.00 + VAT.  This includes attendance on the 13 and/or 14 September (Excluding accommodation and breakfast).

Accommodation Package – Conference attendees can avail of the CBI preferential rate at the Slieve Donard.  This includes conference attendance on the 13 and 14 September,  overnight stay in a standard double room in the Slieve Donard Resort & Spa, with full cooked breakfast with your peers and the networking dinner on the evening of the 13 September at £180 + VAT.

The MSB Conference is designed for companies with a turnover less than £500 million, who are on a clear growth trajectory; from ambitious and confident firms driving into the mid-market, through to successful mid-market firms who continually champion innovation and competitiveness. The objective is to share knowledge and best practice whilst also helping to influence the wider policy debate. Attendees can expect practical guidance through a mix of thought-provoking case studies, group discussion and collaborative networking.  

See video highlights from previous years below

1. What challenges are local mid size businesses facing in the current climate? #markcunningham #BankofIreland See more

2. What is the business sentiment among local MSB organisations? #brianmurphy #BDO See more

3. How important is the MSB sector to Northern Ireland economy? #TrevorLockhart #CBI See more


The best business minds from the region under one roof for 24 hours!
#productive #innovative #valuable #connections #CBImsb18 #SBIsme18