CBI Annual Conference 2017


For the first time the CBI took their prestigious Annual Conference to the InterContinental Hotel at the O2 and once again chose LRI as their production partner. This new space allowed the audience to increase to more than 1,200 business leaders from across all UK industries as well as being attended by both national and international media, broadcasting live from the conference.

The challenge this year was to make creative use of this much larger space and we were tasked with designing not only a setting to reflect the day’s theme of “A World of Opportunities” but to also develop the Registration, Security, Media and Networking areas. Due to the large number of delegates attending, and the high level of security required at such a high-profile event, we needed to utilise all the available space in an imaginative and intuitive way whilst maintaining the delegate flow and enhancing their experience.


To facilitate a smooth registration process and security checks. a temporary structure on the forecourt was built outside the Arora Ballroom complex. This housed the on-site registration and pre-registered delegate management process and security regime. VIPs and Media were fast tracked through a separate area in the lower Ballroom foyer. Once delegates arrived on the first floor foyer they were able to view a number of partner and sponsor stands before entering into the main Ballroom.

Inside the Arora Ballroom delegates were presented with a spectacular, dynamic set. LRI designed an all-encompassing setting comprising of a central widescreen projection backdrop for branding, video and live cameras. This was flanked by two full height side screens – one for Conference Content and the other Media section with live Twitter, BBC and Sky news and constantly updated statistics. We were also able to combine all three screens to provide a stunning canvas for the opening sequence and session links. If this was not enough we continued the set outwards with a series of flown LED tiles in a fractured motif carrying sympathetic colour tones to the edge of the room. The extra wide stage was complimented with a large runway and circular dais allowing speakers to present from among the audience.

The CBI Conference prides itself on the quality of its speakers, ranging from politicians to global business leaders and this naturally interests the world’s media. In response we designed and built a soundproofed media zone opposite the stage utilising large acrylic windows through which news crews could relay their reports live with the set in the background. This year the Conference was covered by BBC, Sky News, ITN, ITV, Bloomberg and CNBC among others…

LRI were also pleased to have worked closely with Conference partner Hays, as well as two of the sponsors, Barclays and University of Birmingham, to design and build their stands showcasing their individual business offerings.


An innovative, larger set; more interactivity; enhanced creativity; greater cohesion with partners and sponsors; smoother media collaboration… so with 8 months in the planning, 7 sponsors, 7 broadcasters, 200 crew and only 24 hours to install… so…

“Thank you and the team so much for your hard work and dedication in helping us make the conference a great success. Your support made the transition to a new venue a much smoother process.

The event space looked fantastic, achieving the more modern look and feel we envisaged. Feedback from across the CBI and from our external partners and members has been brilliant.  Thank you for all the hours of work carried out with good humour, that went into ensuring a fantastic event.  It was a pleasure working with you.”

Amy Swain, Director Commercial Development & Events, CBI