In March 2024, GM Business Growth Hub will be heading to the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival – an essential destination for global professionals.

Four creative businesses based in Greater Manchester will get the fully funded opportunity to attend this internationally renowned festival alongside the Hub.

The annual event in Austin, Texas explores the convergence of tech, film, music, education and culture from around the globe.

“Attending SXSW is an incredible opportunity for creative businesses in our region,” said Becki Coen, programme manager for the digital, creative & tech sector at GM Business Growth Hub. 

“Thousands of the most innovative and inspiring minds come together in one place to reach new connections and markets from around the world. 

“I’m excited that we get to expand on our delegation from last year and offer even more  businesses in Greater Manchester the priceless networking opportunities SXSW has. The festival showcases a unique insight into the future of the sector, inspiring businesses with  creative new ideas to bring back home and support their growth.” 

Representatives of the GMCA culture team will also join the trip alongside artists supported and  selected by the GMMC (Greater Manchester Music Commission). 

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Last year, for the first time, GM Business Growth Hub invited three businesses from the Greater Manchester creative community to attend the conference – including Rachel Emson, MD of creative agency VIVID Manchester.

“Being part of the US mission has been invaluable for our business. In just a few days, we met agencies from across the world, from New York to Slovakia and Brazil – relationships that have been glued together by the delegation that shared Manchester’s message loud and proud. 

“We’ve felt like part of the Greater Manchester scene, allowing us to celebrate this on the global stage.” 

Bryony Simcox and George Webster, co-founders of the Trafford-based filmmaking studio Broaden, were also among the at last year’s event.

“Being here at SXSW with the cities’ leaders, in person, means we’ve been able to cut through the noise and talk about the things that matter to us as videographers, business owners and residents of a city that we love. 

“Furthermore, we could never have had this level  of meaningful interaction if it wasn’t for being at such a mind-opening, globally relevant  event.” 

Applications are now open and will be closed on 5th December 2023. You can apply here.

Business Growth Hub has been a great journey – & there’s more to come