Sir Terry Leahy calls on UK businesses to invest their time in IFB 2014

Sir Terry Leahy, former CEO of Tesco, business investor and Chairman of B&M; Retail, discusses the business-growth benefits for companies investing time in IFB 2014.

"I wish there had been an IFB 2014 when Tesco was about to embark on its international expansion. It would have made it a lot easier to develop contacts and forge partnerships which are the key to successful expansion abroad.

As it was it took us a decade to become an international force to be reckoned with.

Business growth is all about relationships. It's about the people you meet - sometimes entirely randomly - and the connections you forge.  Those relationships create opportunity: new partners, new suppliers and new customers.

Liverpool and its city region this summer will be the time and the place for business people from across the UK to make such connections and grab such opportunities.

It isn't just Liverpool either and it is profoundly encouraging to see two great Northern cities - Liverpool and Manchester - working together to make the IFB a success. IFB events are also taking place across much of the north of the country.

If I were starting out in business today, or if I were still at the helm of a multi-billion pound global business such as Tesco, I would be at IFB in June and July. I'd be instructing my executives to register as delegates and I'd be instructing them to think hard and think creatively about how we should be involved.

Every business in the UK should consider investing their time in IFB 2014. The return on that investment could be enormous.

So my message is to do just that - get involved, invest a little time and take your business to the next level."