‘Get stuck into some serious business’

IMEX in Frankfurt brings together global suppliers, world-renowned speakers and the latest learnings

“IMEX in Frankfurt is truly a global gathering of the MICE industry – bringing together 14,000 senior industry professionals each May to meet, do business and advance the sector. The show is a melting pot of ideas, connections and shared experiences that can only happen when meeting face to face.  IMEX constantly seeks to innovate and deliver fresh and surprising content at each show – and this year’s IMEX in Frankfurt is no exception,” Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group.

With 3,500 exhibitors from over 150 countries, buyers can get stuck into some serious business. New exhibitors confirmed so far include Mallorca Tourist Board, Associated Luxury Hotels, the Faroe Islands, Pacific World Congresses & Exhibitions and Nobu Hotels. Jordan Tourism Board, Hilton International, Evintra, Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Azerbaijan and H-Hotels are among the exhibitors who have an increased presence at the show this year.

Exhibitor announcements

New Leonardo hotel openings in Frankfurt and Zurich, the launch of a new tall ship for Sea Cloud Cruises, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre’s Economic Impact Study results, Peninsula Hotels’ new Global Art Programme plus the launch of new exclusive experiences for Eurostar clients are just a few of the updates buyers will hear when talking business with exhibitors. More than 10 organisations also plan to make news announcements during IMEX including: SITE, Airport Authority Hong Kong, European Cities Marketing and Thailand.

New Discovery Zone – powered by imagination

Imagination is IMEX’s Talking Point for this year and the theme informs content throughout the show, bringing with it a range of exciting new experiences, exhibitors and educational events. Imagination powers the show’s new Discovery Zone, which is set to showcase the latest in experiential concepts and event technology. This specially curated area will be packed with education and experiences to fire up the imagination of event planners and exhibitors alike, helping them to question the conventional and explore fresh approaches.

A talking robot, holographic show and 360degree photography booth plus an interactive art mural are among some of the surprises in store. Attendees can explore the great outdoors while dining indoors at the show’s food court, they can also kick back with table football, table tennis and other games for some purposeful rest and relaxation.

EduMonday launches with keynote

Learning opportunities are core to IMEX in Frankfurt, beginning with EduMonday, an afternoon of free professional education taking place the day before the show on Monday 20 May. Anne Kjaer Riechert, Co-founder & Managing Director of ReDI School of Digital Integration, launches EduMonday with her keynote at She Means Business, a conference created in partnership with tw tagungswirtschaft. After this attendees can stay and be part of She Means Business, celebrating the role of women in the events industry or mix and match from a programme of 20 general sessions designed around professional or personal development.

For the first time, MPI (Meeting Professionals International, Strategic Partners to IMEX America) will also be offering high level education sessions during EduMonday: event marketing; risk management and inclusivity. Erwin Steijlen, who was a huge hit at MPI’s recent European Meetings and Events Conference (EMEC) with also bring his show-stopping presentation on “The Power of Music” to IMEX.

Event professionals from all sectors and all levels can explore topics and trends via a number of dedicated events during EduMonday, all specifically curated for various audiences. Association professionals from around the world are invited to Association Day & Evening, to share best practice and connect with peers. ASAE, ICCA and MCI have all collaborated with IMEX to create a topical and interactive programme, delivering three Learning Labs covering Leadership, Imagination and Knowledge. The Agency Directors Forum is a strategic exchange for small to mid-size meetings and events agencies focusing on People & Talent Management, Keeping your Leadership Skills Smart, Technology for your Business and Diversity, Collaboration, Transformation. There’s also education and networking exclusively for corporate/in-house meeting and event executives at Exclusively Corporate which includes speakers from the International Olympic Committee, Barclays, Cisco, Microsoft and KPMG.

Young planners learn ‘how to put the roar into their career’

Young professionals will learn ‘how to put the roar into their career’ in Living life with a purpose, a session that’s part of Rising Talent, personal development education designed for planners under 35 years. Other sessions focus on how to develop leadership qualities, networking and career advancement strategies, and also The impact of associations and their conferences on destinations detailing the importance of legacy.

Explore social learning, food waste & emotional engagement

With over 250 complimentary learning sessions in both English and German taking place on EduMonday and throughout the three days of the show, there’s no shortage of opportunities to update industry knowledge and contacts. Sessions focus on hot topics and are designed across 10 tracks, including business skills, creative learning, research and trends, sustainability and health and wellbeing.

New for this year is the Red Lab where experts from outside the events sector will deliver fresh and imaginative perspectives in sessions such as Social learning: Connect. Share. Learn from game based learning platform and What a waste! Finding solutions for world problems using co-creation – a session delivered by Laure Berment fromToo Good To Go, the world’s number one app for fighting food waste.

The importance of mindfulness in talent management will be presented by Jan Esswein, one-time monk and now Germany’s most widely-read author on the subject of mindfulness. Emotional engagement in event design is explored by experts including James Morgan, Founder of Event Tech Lab. There’s also a brand new Event Innovation Lab, by EventManagerblog.com – an immersive event planning training workshop aimed at high-performance agencies and corporate event teams.

IMEX in Frankfurt takes place 21 -23 May 2019. Registration for the show is free of charge and open to all who work in the meetings, events and incentive travel industry. EduMonday, 20 May, is available to all industry professionals who attend IMEX.

Malaysia International Trade & Exhibition Centre (MITEC) Grows Due to Market Demand

Touted as the country’s largest trade and exhibition space that has catered to over 180 business events since its inception in 2017, the Malaysia International Trade & Exhibition Centre’s (MITEC) has made a strategic move to expand its meeting spaces.

The confex and meeting segments are big contributors to the Malaysian business events economy and MITEC has been the venue of choice in enabling the country to host international expos at a world class level. “It makes perfect sense for us to leverage on our current capacity and abilities to further expand our meetings and conferences business,” said Gunther Beissel, Chief Executive Officer of MITEC.

By September, professional conference and meetings planners will be able to add more meeting rooms to their list as MITEC completes two additional rooms. The rooms will be located on Level 1A of the building, showcases the flexibility of theatre and banquet style seating. The theatre style arrangement accommodates up to 1,200 pax while banquet seating is up to 650 pax. In a slightly smaller set-up, the other room can accommodate up to 400 pax for theatre style and 240 pax for banquet arrangements. These rooms have the flexibility to be used as smaller exhibition spaces closer to the other conference rooms.

Speaking on its positioning in the market, Beissel elaborated, “As a premier Venue business partner, MITEC’s facilities are continuously upgraded to stay ahead of its market demand through offering higher value customised client solutions and in-house expertise.”

Upon completion of these meeting spaces, the business readiness of the Centre will encompass 11 exhibitions halls, one ballroom, 13 meetings rooms, two outdoor amphitheatres and two new multipurpose rooms.

To receive first-hand information of the facility, visit www.mitec.com.my or get in touch by calling 03-6206 0100. MITEC is also actively connected on Social Media including channels such as Facebook (@Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre), Instagram (@mitec_my) and LinkedIn (Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre).


MicroTek, a global leader in corporate meeting and training facilities and services, is proud to announce that its Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. locations have received IACC Venue Certification.

In order to receive this certification, IACC member venues must demonstrate commitment to the highest standards in facility design, capabilities, and services, as well as technology and sustainability. IACC member properties are designed and operated to ensure that clients have access to the most productive professional environments and are supported by an outstanding on-site staff. Above all else, certified facilities demonstrate an outcome-focused commitment to corporate clients and their core business and event objectives.

In attaining this prestigious status, MicroTek further solidifies its commitment to continued enhancement and growth of its comprehensive portfolio of all-inclusive meeting spaces and services.

“We are proud to receive the IACC member venue designation. It speaks to the incredible dedication of our planning, corporate, and onsite teams to always provide the highest quality product and level of service that we have come to be known for,” says Don Slivensky, CEO of MicroTek.

Located in the heart of 9 major metropolitan business hubs across the country, MicroTek’s premier meeting facilities offer flexible meeting spaces paired with a full suite of all-inclusive meeting services.

To learn more about MicroTek’s premier meeting venues, visit mclabs.com/meet

Since 1991, MicroTek has been an industry-leading, single-source provider of corporate meeting and training facilities, learning and event technology solutions, and comprehensive support services. With an expert team and network of more than 3,000 facilities worldwide, MicroTek has the resources and expertise to execute the most effective corporate meeting and training events for any client, anywhere in the world.

Ray Bloom honoured with Exhibition News Pioneer Award at EN Awards

Ray Bloom, Chairman of the IMEX Group has been honoured by Exhibition News with its Pioneer Award.

The Award was presented by Julian Agostini, Managing Director of Mash Media at the EN Awards held in Battersea Evolution, London on 22 March 2019.

Before the announcement, Nicola Macdonald explained the criteria for the Pioneer Award. She said that the exhibition industry is full of inspiring entrepreneurs, individuals who are innovative, risky and brave, who trust their intuition, possess incredible foresight, exude self-belief and most of all, have a will to succeed. 

She continued, saying that as the winner of the Exhibition News Pioneer Award, Ray Bloom has displayed all these qualities and opened the door to tomorrow’s world, while growing the industry to the benefit of all. He has innovated and inspired throughout a long career in the exhibition industry. She added that he was a visionary, creating events for events people and pioneering the hosted buyer programme which is now widely used in the industry. 

Nicola Macdonald concluded “Ray is a true pioneer of the exhibition industry, growing truly global, trailblazing events while still remaining the approachable, personable and passionate face of the brand. We were thrilled to recognise him for his lifelong contribution to the industry at the 13th EN Awards.”

After the presentation of the Award Ray Bloom said; “This is totally unexpected. It means an enormous amount. When you’ve been working in the industry for 30 years to be recognised by your peers is very gratifying. I feel greatly honoured tonight. I’d like to thank Exhibition News very much, and the IMEX team and all our industry partners, friends and colleagues for their tremendous support over many years.”

Award Winning Musicians, Legend and Paisley, Set to Entertain Attendees at 2019 ASAE Annual Meeting & Exposition, Columbus.

2019 ASAE Annual Meeting & Exposition attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy multi award winning musical performances, first by John Legend at the ASAE Foundation The Classic, and Brad Paisley at the Closing Celebration. From August 10–13, ASAE is expecting more than 5,000 association professionals and industry partners to come together in Columbus.

“This will be the first time the ASAE Annual Meeting is being held in Columbus and we couldn’t be more excited. As a Strategic Partner, Experience Columbus has long supported the association community, and as hosts they have planned a memorable experience for our attendees by signing John Legend and Brad Paisley as entertainment,” said ASAE President & CEO John H. Graham IV, FASAE, CAE.                                                                                        

Ohio native John Legend will perform during the ASAE Foundation’s The Classic. The  event will take place on Monday, August 12 at the Nationwide Arena.  “We are thrilled to have John Legend perform at The Classic,” said Susan Robertson, CAE, EVP, ASAE/President, ASAE Foundation. “An intimate performance by one of today’s top musical stars paired with the knowledge that attendees are helping The Foundation advance the association industry makes this event a must.”

Country superstar and spokesperson for Columbus based Nationwide, Brad Paisley, will help us celebrate under the stars for a closing concert on Tuesday, August 13. The event will take place at Express Live!, the first indoor – outdoor convertible venue. “The city of Columbus cannot wait to welcome 2019 ASAE Annual Meeting attendees,” said Brian Ross, President & CEO, Experience Columbus. “It is our hope that in addition to our diverse and creative city, these top performers will make Columbus an unforgettable meeting.”

Early bird registration ends May 10. Please note, admission to evening events is limited to meeting attendees and their pre-registered guests. To learn more about all of the education opportunities, registration, hotels, and events, visit the ASAE Annual Meeting website.

NOTE: Members of the press receive complimentary registration to attend the event. Please contact the ASAE Public Relations department to request your complimentary pass.

ASAE thanks the following Alliance Partners for their continued support of the association community:

Strategic Partners

Atlanta CVB

Canada Business Events

Choose Chicago

Experience Columbus

Community Brands
Greater Fort Lauderdale CVB
Naylor Association Solutions
Discover Puerto Rico

Corporate Partners

Visit Austin
Visit Baltimore

Caesars Entertainment
Destination Cleveland

Visit Dallas

DelCor Technology Solutions



Louisville Tourism

Visit Omaha
Travel Portland

Visit Salt Lake
Visit San Jose

Event Partners

IMIS by Advanced Solutions International

The Broadmoor


Higher Logic


Discover the Palm Beaches

MEDIA CONTACT: Lauren Precker, CAE lprecker@asaecenter.org, 202-626-2735.

About ASAE

ASAE is a membership organization of more than 44,000 association executives and industry partners representing 7,400 organizations. Its members lead, manage, and work in or partner with organizations in more than a dozen association management disciplines, from executive management to finance to technology. Together, they create a vibrant community that makes the world smarter, safer, and better every day. With support of the ASAE Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity, ASAE is the premier source of learning, knowledge, and future-oriented research for the association and nonprofit profession and provides resources, education, ideas, and advocacy to enhance the power and performance of the association and nonprofit community. Visit ASAE at asaecenter.org

The Points Guy Ranks Delta Best U.S. Airline

The aviation and travel site ranked 10 U.S. airlines in 11 categories, tabulated the results and concluded: ‘Delta was the big winner.’

Each year the website The Points Guy comprehensively examines U.S. airlines, crunching data in everything from on-board amenities to route network, on-time performance to value of frequent flier programs and more.

The verdict: Delta is No. 1.

In a special report this week, TPG ranked 10 U.S. airlines on 11 criteria, drawing scores from hard metrics such as canceled flights, customer satisfaction and percentage of customers involuntarily bumped.

Concluded TPG: “Delta was the big winner, with 92.7% of planes arriving on time, the largest network of lounges and cities served, and several other strong suits.”

Delta beat out Alaska Airlines for the top spot, with Southwest No. 3.

Scott Mayerowitz, Executive Editorial Director at The Points Guy, told Forbes, which covered TPG’s report:  “Delta was ahead of its competitors in some key investments, and that is reflected in our rankings.” 

Read the article​, including a rundown of TPG’s categories and scoring.


Nearly $200 Million Project Exceeds City’s Target of 30 Percent Minority and Women Business Participation

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland was joined by the Memphis Convention Center Board of Commissioners, its construction committee, Memphis Tourism leadership and members of the hospitality industry to formally kick-off the renovation of the Memphis Convention Center.

Memphis Convention Center Project Overview Video:

The work over the next two years will make Memphis competitive in the meetings and conventions market, while complementing the already strong leisure market segment. The vital civic project will transform the city’s convention center into a modern showplace that will not only preserve its status as a major economic engine for our city, but grow it.

“This renovation is another prime example of the momentum we are gaining in Memphis, and we are incredibly proud of the significant inclusion of small, minority and women owned businesses who will participate in this project,” said Mayor Jim Strickland. “This will allow us to go out and recruit more conferences, events, and ultimately more people coming to our city and spending money with our local businesses and hotels.”

Scheduled to be completed by the Fall of 2020, this game changing project for the tourism industry is being funded through the hotel/motel tax and Tourism Development Zone (TDZ) funds. W.G. Yates and Sons submitted the lowest bid in November 2018 and will serve as the contractor for the nearly $200 million project,  the largest civic project since FedExForum was constructed when Memphis secured an NBA franchise. Approximately $44.5 million will be spent with minority and women business enterprises – or MWBE’s, according to City of Memphis estimates. That surpasses the city’s MWBE goal of 30 percent, coming in at almost 33 percent.

LRK of Memphis and tvsdesign partnered to develop a design plan that utilizes and enhances the existing city owned facility. When complete, the Memphis Convention Center will feature a column free 118,000-square-foot main exhibit hall, a new exterior concourse and pre-function space, 46 breakout rooms, a secondary flex space that easily converts to a 67,500-square-foot ballroom, the largest in the region, and a 28,000-square foot ballroom to host smaller events. The renovation will also include public art, and digital wayfinding, and additional loading docks for easier load in and load out for a show.

“We’re remodeling this facility with meeting planners and their delegates in mind. When complete, we’ll have modern enhancements throughout the redesigned Memphis Convention Center, including a grand new entrance, high-end finishes, more breakout meeting rooms and floor-to-ceiling windows that treat visitors to natural light and stunning river views,” said Kevin Kane, President and CEO of Memphis Tourism, the official destination marketing organization for Memphis & Shelby County that also operates and manages the facility through Memphis Management Group, a subsidiary of Memphis Tourism.

Conveniently located on the Main Street trolley line within walking distance of restaurants, hotels, shops, entertainment venues and businesses, the Memphis Convention Center easily connects with the Pinch District, Downtown Core, South Main Arts District and Beale Street. With a reimagined convention center on the horizon, Memphis is currently seeing a significant amount of new hotel development with 13 hotels under construction or in planning the planning phase, putting an additional 2,000 new hotel rooms in the pipeline for the downtown central business district, according to the Downtown Memphis Commission. A total of $4 billion in new office, retail, hotel and residential development is currently planned all across downtown Memphis.

The Memphis Convention Center and the adjoining 2,100 seat Cannon Center will continue to host events and be open for business during the renovation. Visit MemphisConvention.com for more information on the Memphis Convention Center, explore future floor plans, an architectural rendering gallery and a video virtual tour of the renovated facility.

For an animated architectural rendering of the renovated Memphis Convention Center or other digital assets, please visit this link to the Memphis Tourism photo and video library

ASAE Foundation Announces Three Innovation Grants Program Award Recipients

The ASAE Foundation named three awardees for the 2019 Innovation Grants Program (IGP). Each grant recipient will receive $10,000, and they will be recognized during ASAE’s 2019 Great Ideas Conference, March 17-19, at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, CO. These grants are funded through support from the SunTrust Foundation, Whiteford, Taylor & Preston L.L.P, GEICO, and Choose Chicago.

The three awardees are:

American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
“Mixed Reality Simulation (MRS)”
Alexandria, VA

American College of Cardiology National Headquarters
Washington, DC

National Association of Colleges and University Business Officers 
“Microlearning at NACUBO” 
Washington, DC

“On behalf of the committee, I want to congratulate the 2019 awardees. It is never an easy task for the committee to make its selections among all the applications received. They reflected creativity and commitment to an innovation process – we look forward to having them share that journey and add to the innovative efforts within the association community.” Rita Chen Fujisawa, 2018 chair of the IGP steering committee and Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, California Association of Health Facilities.

During the last seven years, the ASAE Foundation has received close to 300 applications and awarded a total of 28 innovation grants to organizations of varied types, sizes, locations, and industries. These numbers underscore the value of innovation in the association community.

“Since 2013, the Innovation Grants Program has been the impetus for innovation growth and open experimentation in the association community. I continue to be impressed with the research, creativity, and dedication being applied to meeting diverse sets of member needs. We appreciate the continued support from SunTrust Foundation, Whiteford, Taylor & Preston L.L.P, GEICO, and Choose Chicago. Congratulations to this year’s winners,” said ASAE EVP, President, ASAE Foundation Susan Robertson, CAE. “

For more information and to apply for DELP, visit IGP website.

MEDIA CONTACT: Lauren Precker, CAE, lprecker@asaecenter.org, 202-626-2735.About ASAE
ASAE is a membership organization of more than 44,000 association executives and industry partners representing 7,400 organizations. Its members lead, manage, and work in or partner with organizations in more than a dozen association management disciplines, from executive management to finance to technology. Together, they create a vibrant community that makes the world smarter, safer, and better every day. With support of the ASAE Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity, ASAE is the premier source of learning, knowledge, and future-oriented research for the association and nonprofit profession and provides resources, education, ideas, and advocacy to enhance the power and performance of the association and nonprofit community. Visit ASAE at asaecenter.org.

2018 PCMA Chairman’s Award Presented at Convening Leaders

Claire Smith, Chair of PCMA’s Board of Directors, today announced the 2018 Chairman’s Award at the Convening Leaders event in Pittsburgh.

Smith presented the award to PCMA employees for their hard work and dedication.

“Last year was exciting, yet challenging, for the organization as it embarked on a journey of self-reflection and realignment towards achieving our vision,” Smith said. “But PCMA employees persevered and embraced change to deliver amazing results, including the 63rd annual Convening Leaders. We are all better for their passion, hard work and commitment to PCMA and the business events industry.”

The award, given by the PCMA Board of Directors Chair, is given annually to an individual, group or organization for unique achievements and contributions to the business events industry over the previous year.

Past recipients include Janet Tan-Collis, president of the Singapore Association of Convention and Exhibition Organizers and Suppliers (SACEOS) and the founder and CEO of East West Planners in Singapore and Isabel Bardinet, CEO of the European Society of Cardiology.

“We are extremely humbled to be recognized by the Chair and I am extremely proud of the team,” said Sherrif Karamat, PCMA president and CEO. “This is the first time the employees have been recognized and it’s an incredible honor.”

Convening Leaders, PCMA’s signature annual event, is the most important, influential and inspiring industry event. The 2019 “Disrupt + Deliver” event was held Jan. 6-9 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

PCMA and business events to help eradicate human trafficking

PCMA has committed to combat child exploitation by signing The Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation in Travel and Tourism. In partnership with ECPAT-USA, The Code is the only voluntary set of business principles that companies and organizations in the travel, business travel and tourism industries can implement to prevent and eradicate the trafficking and exploitation of children.

The initiative forms part of the association’s new vision that business events drive social positive transformation. Its commitment to The Code and partnership with ECPAT-USA, which engages with the private sector to drive innovation in protecting children around the world, will see the world’s largest network of business events strategists advocate, build awareness and act on the issue.

The signing of The Code was announced by PCMA Foundation Chair and President of Maritz Global Events, David Peckinpaugh, during the association’s annual Convening Leaders conference, taking place from Jan. 6-9, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

“As an industry, currently worth over $150 billion, we have the power of advocating and raising awareness of the human trafficking epidemic, and have a stronger voice for the vulnerable, whose opinions and opportunities have been taken away from them”, said Peckinpaugh. “Together with ECPAT-USA and other participating organizations, we are committed to doing everything in our power to end human trafficking.”

Alongside other industry experts, Peckinpaugh will present a session at Convening Leaders taking an in-depth look at the human trafficking epidemic.

“One of ECPAT-USA’s main focuses — and essential tools for ending child sex trafficking — is engagement with the private sector, including ensuring as many associates in the travel industry are educated about this urgent issue”, said Michelle Guelbart, director of private sector engagement at ECPAT-USA. “This new collaborative partnership with PCMA helps expand that mission to thousands more and will help protect countless more children from exploitation.”