Group of diverse business people on panel discussion

Regional event: Birmingham

Regional conferences | Apr 18

Delivered by:

Small Business Charter Logo

Sponsored by:

HM Government logo

Regional event: Birmingham

June 4th
9:30 am – 4:00 pm
HSBC Birmingham Centenery Square, 1 Centenary Square, Birmingham, England, B1 1HQ

Highlighted speakers:

Gus Bhandal

Gus Bhandal Founder, The M Guru

Shaun sookoo

Shaun sookoo Founder, Viomar Holdings 

Justice Williams

Justice Williams Co-Founder & Editor in Chief, Black Business Magazine

Build, innovate and prosper

Discover how you can propel your business forward and embark on a journey towards innovation and growth. Join us in Birmingham for our exciting half-day conference in June. This event will ignite your entrepreneurial spirit and fuel your drive for success.

Event highlights include:

  • A social media marketing masterclass led by renowned expert Gus Bhandal, delving into innovative strategies to boost brand visibility and engagement.
  • An engaging panel discussion on accessing funding and tailored business support as an SME in the West Midlands.
  • Inspirational keynotes from seasoned entrepreneurs who overcame challenges to achieve growth.
  • Ample networking opportunities to connect with fellow members of the Help to Grow: Management community in your region.


09:30 Breakfast and registration

Breakfast and refreshments are provided.

10:00 Opening remarks

Kai Peters, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Business & Law, Coventry University Group 

10:10 Conversation café 

We will be kickstarting the day with an engaging networking exercise. You will be given a set of business-focused questions and encouraged to discuss the answers with your peers. This is your opportunity to share and hear from other business leaders about their journey. 

10:30 Keynote address: Building the right team to scale


During our opening session, you will hear from Shaun Sookoo about his entrepreneurial journey. Shaun has overseen a diverse portfolio of companies spanning from food manufacturing, distribution, care, property, and non-profit sectors. His ventures employ over 120 individuals and generate a collective turnover of nearly £20 million.

Shaun will delve into the intricacies of his experience, focusing not only on his successes but also on the challenges he has faced. Specifically, he will discuss the importance of nurturing your workforce, assembling a capable team to facilitate growth, and contributing to the community.

Shaun Sookoo, Founder, Viomar Holdings  

11:00 Social media masterclass

In this session, Gus will guide you through strategies to optimise your business’s digital marketing channels, enhance visibility and attract new customers. Learn how to leverage social media platforms to improve sales and digital presence, whilst saving time and resources.  

This masterclass will focus on these key areas:  

  • Setting clear objectives: Learn how to establish measurable goals.  
  • Strategies for achieving your social media marketing goals: Discover the ideal platforms, content nuances, and time allocation for maximum impact.  
  • Customer connection tactics: Learn how to craft compelling content strategies, expand reach, and master inbound/outbound techniques.  
  • Measure success: Learn to track metrics, understand how to distinguish between organic and paid strategies, and ensure your efforts yield results.  

Benefit from practical examples, case studies, and engaging activities to ignite your digital marketing journey.  

Gus Bhandal, Founder, The M Guru 

12:20 mid-morning break

12:50 Identifying and overcoming barriers to growth 

Every business wants to grow, but figuring out the best way, is far from easy. Thankfully, the solutions and support you need, may not be far away. Whether it’s advice on raising finance, key information, or support on entering new markets.  

Our stellar panel includes representatives from businesses who have successfully expanded their operations by getting the right support, as well as a selection of organisations that can help you get the support you need.    

Key takeaways will include:  

  • Introductions to business support services in the West Midlands.  
  • Ways to access finance in your area. 
  • Who you can talk to and receive tailored advice.
  • How purpose and strong values can be a catalyst for growth. 

Chaired by Greg Caiger, Regional Director, HSBC

Henrietta Brealey, CEO, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce  

Monder Ram, Professor of Small Business and Director, CREME Aston Business School  

Damini Sharma, CEO and Founder, The OM Group

13:35 keynote address: build yourself and your business

In this unique keynote, the Co-Founder of Black Business Magazine will share her remarkable journey of establishing her personal brand and the profound impact it had on her business. Join us to learn about the innovative steps you can take to elevate your visibility, expand your network, and enhance your business’s credibility and consumer trust. Explore the essence of your brand’s identity and learn how to authentically present yourself to seize lucrative opportunities, attract investment, and develop exit strategies when necessary.  

Justice Williams, Co-Founder & Editor in Chief, Black Business Magazine 

14:05 Closing remarks

Kai Peters, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Business & Law, Coventry University Group 

14:15 Lunch, networking and exhibitions


If you have any questions, please get in touch by email at or contact the Small Business Charter by phone on 020 7634 9584.

Capacity is limited so please register your place as soon as possible.

About our Speakers

Gus Bhandal

Gus Bhandal Founder, The M Guru

Shaun sookoo

Shaun sookoo Founder, Viomar Holdings 

Henrietta Brealey

Henrietta Brealey CEO, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce  

Justice Williams

Justice Williams Co-Founder & Editor in Chief, Black Business Magazine

Professor Monder Ram

Professor Monder Ram Professor of Small Business and Director, CREME Aston Business School 

Damini Sharma

Damini Sharma CEO and Co-Founder, The OM Group, Help to Grow: Management Course Alumnus

Greg Caiger

Greg Caiger Regional Director, HSBC

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