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Meet the Buyer North 2021: Power of Procurement Stage

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What's on the Power of Procurement Stage at Meet the Buyer North 2021?

Meet the Buyer North 2021 has a packed agenda running throughout the day with two main stages: the Power of Procurement Stage and the Let's Do Net Zero Stage.

In addition to meeting buyers and decision makers in the virtual Exhibit Hall, suppliers are invited to watch presentations throughout the day and participate in live Question and Answer sessions with speakers.

Each stage has a slightly different timetable, with in-built time for visiting the virtual exhibition stands. As there is not enough time in the day to attend every single session, the Supplier Development Programme encourages all suppliers to plan an individualised agenda in advance to suit the needs of their business.

All presentations, including each live question and answer session, will be available on the Supplier Development Programme’s YouTube Channel after the event. Please click to subscribe!

Both stages will begin the same way on 7 September:

10:00am Meet the Buyer North 2021 Opens

  • A keynote address by SDP in the Highlands and Islands, delivered by Diane Beattie, Moray Council Payments Manager and Fiona Conti, Strategic Procurement Manager at Aberdeenshire Aberdeen City and Highland Council Shared Procurement Service. The duo will chat over a virtual coffee after a joint speech.

10:10am Ministerial Address

  • Welcome from Ivan McKee MSP, Minister for Business, Trade, Tourism & Enterprise

After the welcome, each stage will break in to their personal agendas.

The Power of Procurement Stage will begin at 10:15am with headline partner Scottish Procurement Alliance (SPA). This will consist of a presentation by Lesley Anderson, Head of Procurement. After the presentation she will be joined by SPA’s Technical Support Manager, Graham Collie, for the live Q&A session to answer any questions suppliers may have.

At 11:15am, there will be an introduction to one of the newer Scottish Government agencies, Social Security Scotland (SSS), from Natalie McCrindle, Head of Procurement and Commercial. The agency, which is exhibiting for the first time, recently awarded contracts worth £2 million to support the set up of its Dundee and Glasgow offices, using the Scottish Government Framework for Supported Businesses to invite bids from organisations that employ disabled or disadvantaged people within their workforce. With SSS set to roll out a national network of local offices, this will also create ample opportunities for firms across the North and elsewhere in Scotland.

The morning will end with a presentation called 'Procurement Opportunities in the Highlands and Islands – from Growth Deals to the Final Frontier', by Dr Stuart Black, Moray Area Manager at Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). The presentation which covers a range of topics from Growth Deals to Spaceports will be followed by a live Q&A session for suppliers to ask questions.

In the afternoon at 12:15pm, a session on Top Tips for Tendering will be led by Gill Joy of Intend Business Development on behalf of the Supplier Development Programme. After the presentation, Gillian Cameron, SDP Programme Manager, will moderate a panel with SDP's expert trainers, including Julie Caughey, Caughey Solutions, John Clark, JI Management Ltd., and Gill Joy to answer suppliers' questions on how to get tender ready.

At 12:45pm, there will be in-build in time for the suppliers to visit the virtual exhibition stands.

At 2:00pm, there will be a presentation on business support offered by Business Gateway and Elevator UK by Kirstie McLaughlin, Operation Manager of Elevator/Business Gateway and Fiona McLellan, Contracts Manager, Business Gateway Tayside.

The Power of Procurement stage will finish with a presentation on the Construction Pipeline Forecast Tool by Triona Tiernan, Associate Directory of Scottish Futures Trust. This tool will be of interest to all businesses in the construction sector, right across Scotland.

The Meet the Buyer North event closes at 4:00pm.

Next Steps

Prior to the event, the Supplier Development Programme advises that all attendees take a look at the full agenda on the Meet the Buyer North page to help you decide which presentations you wish to attend prior to the event. You will not be able to attend all of the presentations as they are across two stages and some run at the same time. Don’t worry if you miss a presentation you really want to see, because you can watch all the presentations on demand or at a later date on the Supplier Development Programme website or on the SDP YouTube Channel.

There’s still time to book a free place for Meet the Buyer North 2021 on 7 September. Register your place on

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