Barnsley businesses connect with digital opportunities

19 June 2012

Barnsley businesses had an inspiring insight into the benefits of digital technology at an event organised by business support organisation Enterprising Barnsley.  

The “Connected Business” event was hosted at the Civic, Barnsley, by Shadow Minister for Culture, Dan Jarvis, and attracted more than 100 representatives of local companies.

It featured a programme of expert speakers and workshops covering subjects from social media and Facebook to cloud-computing and e-procurement.

Tracey Johnson, Creative and Digital Industries Sector Specialist at Enterprising Barnsley, said the gathering was such a success that there are plans to make it an annual event.

She said: “We were really pleased that so many businesses came along and feedback has shown that those who attended really benefitted from the knowledge and connections available. 

“There is huge interest in doing business digitally in Barnsley and more businesses are looking to do more online and are keen to ride the social media wave to connect with each other, their customers and their supply chain.”

Mr Jarvis added: "Connected Business was a fantastic event for Barnsley businesses. It was a great coup, getting some of the biggest names in digital and social media to Barnsley.  Our speakers really demonstrated that in using these platforms, the world really is very easily accessible for the businesses here." 

The programme included a workshop by Simon Milner, director of policy at Facebook UK, on using Facebook to win customers.

Other speakers included social media expert Linda Cheung, procurement expert Rachel Fletcher, and Herb Kim, founder of the Thinking Digital Conference.

Gerd Leonhard, renowned Media Futurist, spoke via video link from Switzerland about what businesses need to do and change to be competitive in the future.

Digital experts also ran one-to-one business surgeries alongside a showcase of local digital businesses and services.

The event generated nearly 900 tweets on the hashtag #connectedbiz on social network site Twitter.

The Enterprising Barnsley programme is supported financially by the European Union. The project has attracted £2,259,511 investment into Barnsley from the European Regional Development Fund as part of Europe’s support for the region’s economic development, through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme.

Media contacts: Deborah Wain on 07903 466228 or at or Kate Betts on 01226 766900 or 07792 764891 or at

The Enterprising Barnsley programme is a partnership between Barnsley Development Agency (BDA) and Barnsley Business and Innovation Centre (BBIC). For more information about Enterprising Barnsley go to or contact Martin Beasley on 01226 772648 or at

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