Coronavirus (COVID-19) update #1

Please note we are monitoring the UK Government’s advice around Coronavirus (COVID-19) closely.

With our 4th annual 5-day Newcastle Startup Week festival due to take place between 18-22 May 2020 we are currently still aiming to run the event as planned & don’t want to cause any unnecessary panic or scaremongering.

However, we have started considering postponing the event until later in the year or trying to deliver it as an online-only experience with talks by speakers livestreamed through Facebook or some other platform (TBC).

Obviously this is not a decision we will be taking lightly as we know there is huge value in bringing people together at our events to be inspired, learn, share knowledge, network with & form new business partnerships & friendships (see our ‘Impact Report 2019‘ & TrustPilot reviews).

Not only that but we have been working on Newcastle Startup Week 2020 since June 2019 & have another amazing programme of events & speakers due to speak on each of the 5 days.

Furthermore, as a micro business ourselves we will be taking a huge financial hit if Newcastle Startup Week doesn’t take place this year as the majority of ticket sales are usually bought between the end of March & the day of the event itself, with between 80%-90% of our total annual revenue coming from this one event!

Even so, after attracting 600 delegates in both 2017 & 2018, then 800 in 2019, we were aiming to attract 1,000 in May 2020 & don’t want to inadvertently increase the chances of spreading Coronavirus between delegates.

We will therefore make a final decision on whether to continue with or postpone Newcastle Startup Week in the first or second week of May at the very latest.

In the meantime, we have created a new ‘Online / Livestream ONLY‘ ticket type for £20 (+ booking fees) for anyone who is worried about Coronavirus or can’t physically attend the event anyway (see our ‘Tickets’ page). We will use this revenue to pay for the production of any new livestreamed content.

We have also decided to cancel our monthly Founders’ Friday events that were due to take place on 27th March & 24th April because:

  1. We already saw the number of attendees at our Founders’ Friday event in February drop by approximately 50% which we suspect may have been down to general Coronavirus concerns
  2. The time we would have spent on organising & running Founders’ Friday can now be spent on developing alternative ways to deliver Newcastle Startup Week content both online & offline

Thank you for reading this & if you AREN’T concerned about Coronavirus & want to show your support for Newcastle Startup Week by booking your ticket now (knowing it MAY be postponed until later in the year) you can still book tickets here.

We also recommend you watch the videos below & keep an eye on Newcastle Council’s official guidance here.

Paul Lancaster
aka @lordlancaster
Founder & Event Producer
Newcastle Startup Week

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