Inspirational female speaker secured for Women Entrepreneur Conference

Kirsty Henshaw became one of the youngest entrepreneurs to receive investment on the show securing a £65,000 investment from Dragons, Peter Jones and Duncan Bannatyne, in return for a 30% stake in Kirsty's Freedom, her frozen dessert business.

Having delivered the most memorable, emotional and successful pitch ever seen on Dragon's Den, the 24 year old single mum will speak to attendees at the “Inspiring Females” Conference.

She will be joined by regional female business women such as OPR Chief Executive and last year’s North East Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award winner Kari Owers, Drummond Central Managing Director Julie Drummond, former quango Chief Executive Norma Foster and Akzo Nobel’s Lizzie White and Shirley Haskett who, along with a host of other business leaders, will oversee a series of workshops throughout the conference.

To inspire our region’s female entrepreneurs and key business women, the North East Chamber of Commerce Woman’s Advisory Board have partnered with UKTI in Export Week and Gateshead College to present an inaugural North East Women’s Conference.

IF (Inspiring Females) is a one day event showcasing some of the UK’s top female speakers, including Sandra Rogers, Managing Director - Marketing, UK Trade & Investment, plus an opportunity to hear great case studies and take part in some practical workshops, all aimed at supporting business growth for our regions women.

The event will be hosted at Gateshead College on 15th November from 9.30 to 15.30 and coincides with this year’s North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards taking place that evening at the Gateshead Hilton whereby some of the region’s top females will be honored for their business successes.

The North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2013 is the annual event that recognises, rewards and promotes achievement of women in business in the North East. The Best Woman in International Business and will recognise the woman who the judges feel have achieved outstanding achievement in international trade.

Nickie Gott, WIN Chair and founder of events management company She’s Gott It! said: “The Inspiring Females Conference sits perfectly with the Female Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. During the day we will be giving women practical advice and tips on how to be successful in business and we will spend the evening celebrating those who are already achieving success.

“We have a truly inspirational set of speakers and workshop hosts and I feel certain that every businesswomen in the region would take something away from the conference, which is also a fantastic networking opportunity.”

Among the sponsors are Gateshead College and UKTI.

Judith Doyle, principal of Gateshead College, said: “Our region has a strong entrepreneurial spirit and it’s vital that we support, celebrate and grow the talent amongst our female entrepreneurs in order to ensure this continued success.

“I’m thrilled the College is able to support these awards and play our part in creating the next generation of inspiring businesswomen.”

Lissa Balmer International Trade Adviser, UK Trade & Investment: “We’ve set ourselves an ambitious target to help create 500 new exporters in the region by 2015. We hope that awards such as these will help inspire others to take up the export challenge.”

Tickets to attend this year’s North East Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards evening on Friday November 15th are £75 + VAT and include drinks reception, a 3-course meal and live entertainment.  Tickets for the conference are priced at £40 or £30 for NECC members and can be booked via

For more information, or to book tickets for the event, please email, call 0191 385 6619, or visit: or /events/events-conferences/if-(inspiring-females)-conference-2013/.