Mayor’s Small Business Expo Slated for October 8 & 9

Mayor Coleman will host the 12th annual Small Business Conference and Expo Oct. 8 & 9 at the Hilton Downtown Columbus and the Greater Columbus Convention Center. The theme for this year’s conference is “Momentum.” Small business owners, business leaders and public policy makers will learn how to stand out from the crowd in this new era in small business innovation.

“The event celebrates the contribution of small businesses to our city, is an educational forum on the latest trends and best practices to help you grow your business and is a platform for networking and connecting with business leaders from throughout the state of Ohio, buyers and other business owners,” Mayor Coleman says.

The two-day conference will combine ample networking opportunities with panel discussions and breakout sessions focusing on small business trends and topics.

Featured speakers, presenters and moderators include John Lowe, CEO of Jeni’s, Cindy Monore, Founder and CEO of Thirty-One Gifts, Darla King, President and Owner of King Business Interiors, Inc., Bill LaFayette, Founder of Regionomics and Inna Kinney, Fouder and CEO of ECDI, among many other small business experts.

The event will also feature Mayor Coleman’s Women’s Business Forum, “Women Wealth & Power: Transforming Our Communities through Business Ownership” with Lisa Price, CEO, Carol’s Daughter Beauty and Skincare Products, New York. Attendees will hear dynamic business women inspire entrepreneurs at all stages to new levels of success in business and in life through a TED Talk style forum, MOMENTA.

Breakout sessions will cover topics like contracting at city and federal level, building strong cities, creating powerful partnerships, building a strong small business ecosystem, and alternatives to access capital.

The Small Business Expo portion of the event will run from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 9. Nearly 100 businesses from various business lines and backgrounds will have the opportunity to profile their products and services, network about contracting opportunities and meet one-on-one with small business support providers such as the State of Ohio loan programs in the new Small Business Resource Bank.  

General conference registration is $50 (Early Bird). The Women’s Business Forum is $20 (Early Bird). To register or learn more about the Columbus Small Business Conference and Expo hosted by Mayor Michael B. Coleman, visit