Day One – Wednesday 15 May

8:30
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Breakfast Briefing
Rising to Challenges and Excelling as a Private Equity-backed CFO/FD
• Planning key career moves
• Building crucial relationships with your CEO, board and finance team
• Managing expectations and identifying value and key risks
• Optimising costs and spending
• Planning and managing an exit process
9:00
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Networking and Registration
9:30
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Chair’s Opening Remarks
9:40
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Keynote Panel
Investing in Innovation – Hear from Front-Runners of SME Tech-Usage
• Where to focus your tech-investments – from business development to upgrading finance function processes
• Using tech innovation to your advantage in a limited resource environment
• Streamlining processes and driving business transformation through tech
• Debating the impact of digital transformation on management structures
• Where will tech take your business and how: sharing success-stories and lessons learnt
10:20
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Real Story – National Merchant Buying Society
Challenge and Opportunity: NMBS’ Journey to RPA Innovation
• Action and reaction: rethinking processes in the wake of a supply set-back and thriving in the process
• Turning forced change into real, transferable marketplace innovation
• Understanding RPA and how it can be used to streamline processes
• Lessons learnt
10:30
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Think Tank
AI, robotics, RPA: understanding modes of implementation and sharing experiences
• In and out of the back-office – Finding where AI and RPA fit into your firm
• Is tech the key to solving problems of efficiency, cost and compliance?
• Using metadata and efficient data collation to help your business thrive
• Cutting costs and perpetuating progress through AI and RPA
11:00
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Networking and Coffee Break
A chance for FDs and CFOs to chat to the UKs leading tech providers over tea and coffee, in a casual networking environment.
11:30
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Panel Discussion
Keeping up with Digital Marketing and CRM Software Innovation
• How to intelligently invest in your marketing strategy
• Exploring options of marketing automation and CRM
• How to best identify consumer needs and allocate budget accordingly
• Following conversion rates and recognizing “hot spots”
• Embracing social media marketing and making it work for your company
12:10
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Showcase Debate
Considering the Future – Online Financing vs. Traditional Funding Methods
• Where traditional funding methods excel and where they fall short
• Examining the evolution of crowdfunding and whether it can work for you
• Preparing your pitch for potential investors and making the most of funding opportunities that are right for your business
• Can reviving peer-to-peer lending simplify the fundraising process?
• Understanding the changes made by online financing, their advantages and shortfalls
12:50
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Quickfire Showcase
Three of our sponsors get the chance to present on stage in a limited time-frame, with each presenter being given 3 minutes to introduce their company and services.
1:00
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Lunch
2:20
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Out of the Box Speaker
Weathering the Storm– Leadership and Teamwork in Tumultuous Times
• Coping with uncertainty and maintaining focus in a changing environment 
• Maintaining stability in the face of adversity and taking the right risks
• Consolidating leadership and teamwork to achieve maximum success
3:00
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Talking Tables
• Managing Regulatory Compliance – GDPR and Beyond
• Moving on from Brexit Disruption
• Approaches to Cyber Security
• Cash Flow Management for Corporate Travel
3:40
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Networking Break
4:10
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Commentary Panel
Managing M&A - Finding the Best Option for your Business
• Due diligence - Identifying associated risks and readying your firm
• Negotiating seller/buyer value expectations and collating financial data
• Managing the transaction process without disrupting the firm
• Observing big-scale mergers and sharing lessons learned

This panel will include the traditional question format to start with, before transitioning into a commentary section, where the panellists comment on 2-3 recent large scale, high-profile M&A transactions and discuss what SMEs can learn from observing the “big players” in this context.
4:50
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Chair’s Closing Remarks and Introduction of The FDs' Excellence Awards
5:00
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The FDs' Excellence Awards and Drinks Reception
Join us in celebrating some of the UK’s most innovative and ambitious Finance Directors and CFOs over a drink or two, as well as honouring the outstanding service providers which help businesses thrive.

Day Two – Thursday 16 May

9:00
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Chair’s Opening Remarks
9:10
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Big Picture Panel
Setting yourself up for Fundraising Success to take your Business to the Next Level
• Clarifying specific financial needs and capital allocation
• Assessing traditional and newer funding alternatives and selecting the right one for your business
• Optimise your financial data and projections to raise capital
• From new products, to operational updates and new markets: where to invest capital for maximum success
• Comparing and Contrasting Funding Methods: Sharing Lessons Learned
9:50
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Keynote Address
Financing your Business in the New Turbulent World
• What are the dimensions of the new political and economic turbulence?
• How can you best cope with the turbulent economic climate and ensure your business stays successful?
• How has the business financing landscape been changing?
• What are the pros and cons of the new emerging alternative equity and borrowing providers?
• How can you benefit from the various ways fund providers can aid your business from contacts to advice and beyond?
• What are the implications of funding options for your business at different stages of growth
10:30
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Real Story
Lessons Learned from Expanding into New Markets
• Considering your position and finding the right time for expansion
• Choosing the best way to take you company global – Weighing up the options
• How to market to new markets and find your footing abroad
• Lessons learnt
11:00
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Networking Break
11:40
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Economic Outlook Panel
Growing your Business and Expanding into New Markets
• Finding the funds and knowing where to focus them for successful expansion
• Maintaining momentum and balancing national and international operations
• Managing additional resources and responsibilities for yourself and your team
• Managing the transition from single to multi-product operations
• Upgrading processes to help manage business growth and deal with compliance issues
• Negotiating cultural challenges and adjusting to new markets
12:20
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Real Story
On Board with Private Equity – 5 Keys to Success with PE Funding
• How can you present your company as an unmissable investment?
• Collaboration is key: working with your board for optimum results
• Understanding changes to the FD role “after” Private Equity involvement
• Utilising increased capital in the right places for maximum success
• Readying your staff and managing the change
1:00
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Lunch
2:20
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Real Story
Understanding Contracts - Mitigating the risks associated with winning, managing and losing them
• Selecting tenders and managing the bidding process
• Balancing varied aspects of the process - from financial risks and due diligence, to legal and compliance matters
• Mobilising and managing the contract once it has been won
• Preparing to say goodbye - managing the demobilisation process
2:50
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Industry Leader Panel
Managing the Commercial FD Role and Staying on Top of your Game
• Understanding and debating the meaning of commercial finance leadership
• Finding a balance - Consolidating strategic involvement with the core responsibilities of the FD role
• Converting data into information and driving the decision-making process
• Keeping up with change - Integrating new business models, skills, requirements and technology with your existing expertise
• Coping with pressure and ensuring consistent performance
3:30
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Expert Outlook
The Future of Recruitment
• Adapting to a changing workforce and exploring new avenues of talent acquisition
• Understanding the new generation of job seekers and how to employ them for maximum success
• Contemplating the pros and cons of in-house training vs. experienced hires
• Managing increased competition and salary expectations
4:00
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Interactive Panel – slido
HR and the FD – an Interactive Discussion
• Commenting on a changing work-force and the problems faced by the finance function when it comes to recruitment
• Debating the skills shortage and identifying what is missing and why
• Keeping staff motivated and ensuring consistent performance from old-timers and new talent alike
• Where best to spend your money to optimise your workforce: training vs. recruitment
4:40
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Chair’s Closing Remarks and end of conference

2019 VENUE

Address: The Montcalm London Marble Arch, W1H 7TN

BY TRAIN: 
• Paddington Station 
• Marylebone Station 

 

BY UNDERGROUND:
• Marble Arch Station on the Central Line 
• Bond Street on the Jubilee Line