Suntec Singapore Welcomes First-to-Singapore Events in 2017

The Centre showcases a strong line up with its annual 88 Key Events announcement

Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre has unveiled its annual 88 Key Events for 2017 as it comes off the back of another outstanding year. In 2016, the Centre hosted 1379 events and won 12 awards. With the Centre gearing up for a busy calendar in 2017, the roster of key events will feature large international and local exhibitions and conferences across a vibrant mix of sectors. A number of these events will be held in Singapore for the first time and have selected Suntec Singapore as their venue of choice.

Influential events held in Singapore for the first time include the 9th WCA Worldwide Conference, the most important global freight forwarding event that draws over 2,500 logistics professionals, BirdLife International World Congress 2017 that brings together the top 800 global conservation leaders from over 120 countries, and UFI Open Seminar in Asia 2017.

Mark Cochrane, Regional Manager, Asia Pacific, UFI, the global association of the exhibition industry, remarked, “Singapore has long been established as one of the key exhibition markets in Asia. Singapore’s MICE industry is recognised around the world for its high standards of professionalism and for its world-class infrastructure. Suntec Singapore plays a key role in that well-deserved reputation. Suntec Singapore is known for its strong management team, its excellent facilities and its awarding-winning catering. For all of these reasons, UFI is very pleased to be bringing the 2017 edition of the UFI Open Seminar in Asia to Singapore.”

Well known for its outstanding and wide range of F&B choices delivered by its award-winning team of chefs, Suntec Singapore has always provided the perfect backdrop to host F&B shows. Speciality & Fine Food Asia incorporating Speciality Chocolate Asia, UK’s biggest gourmet trade show, will be launching its inaugural Asia edition in the Centre. “We will bring the vibrancy and excitement that buyers love about our London event to Southeast Asia. The team of professionals at Suntec Singapore with their impeccable service and appreciation of our business gives us great confidence of a partner who can help us achieve our goals,” said Christopher McCuin, Group Business Development Director, Montgomery.

As one of the most technologically advanced MICE venues, Suntec Singapore will once again feature core technology events like SEAMLESS Asia, the largest regional event on cards and payment with 7,000 tech and e-commerce professionals, and BroadcastAsia2017, the premier and largest broadcast and media technology show in the region.

With more than 17,000 attendees and 650 exhibitors expected, Mr Calvin Koh, Assistant Project Director (Communications Events), Singapore Exhibition Services – organiser of BroadcastAsia, remarked, “We have chosen Suntec Singapore for its outstanding facilities that is powered by cutting-edge technology deployed at the Centre. We are very impressed with the venue-wide, free high-speed WiFi and the comprehensive network of interactive digital screens that offer us the opportunity to better design the way we communicate with our visitors on way-finding and the daily show programmes.”

With about 60 medical and healthcare related events held at the Centre annually, Suntec Singapore, which is PhRMA-code compliant, continues to be a key regional hub for new and returning medical shows such as the 32nd Asia Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology Congress 2017, Asia Hospice Conference 2017, Asian Pacific Society of Cardiology Congress 2017, Asia PCR/Sing LIVE, and ESMO Asia 2017.

Prof Wong Tien Yin, Congress President of the 32nd Asia Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology Congress 2017, commented, “Suntec Singapore has very flexible spaces that we are able to customise and configure to create ‘venues within venue’ for our programme, which require concurrent session rooms, exhibition halls and socialising areas. Being a vertically-stacked building, our delegates will always be close by the rooms that they need to be at.”

Completing the well-balanced mix of events are the consumer lifestyle, technology and entertainment events. These range from the well regarded Singapore Contemporary Art Show, the highly popular Singapore Motorshow, the unique Anime Festival Asia to the perennial crowd-pulling tech events of COMEX 2017 and ITShow 2017, and family-oriented shows like BookFest 2017, Baby World 2017 and Rise and Shine 2017. Rounding out the roster are live concerts which include world class acts like the Bryan Adams Get Up tour.

“We value the confidence placed in us by new and repeat clients who have chosen Suntec Singapore as the preferred place to meet,” said Arun Madhok, Chief Executive Officer, Suntec Singapore. “Suntec Singapore leads the industry through innovation and the relentless pursuit of excellence. We have successfully combined the ideal location, flexible meeting spaces, new technology, culinary excellence, and our team of dedicated service professionals to offer a seamless, customised experience for our clients and their guests,” he explained.

In 2016, the Centre had introduced a slew of innovations that helped organisers reap efficiencies. These included the private online accommodation booking service, the ImmersiveAV Suite with panoramic screens and holographic technology that transform audience experiences, and event traffic intelligence using WiFi data analytics to help organisers make data-driven decisions. In 2017, Suntec Singapore will expand its collaboration with strategic partners with the right expertise to deliver new value-added services that can help organisers significantly improve the dynamics of how experiences are created at the Centre.

“Suntec Singapore received 12 prestigious industry awards in 2016, including the ‘Asia’s Leading Meetings & Conference Centre’ from the World Travel Awards. We are delighted to be recognised by our clients and peers for our efforts and achievements, and heartened by their strong continued support which has resulted in the outstanding line up of events for 2017,” Arun remarked.

About Suntec Singapore
Suntec Singapore is the World’s Leading Meetings & Conference Centre, located at the heart of Asia’s most integrated meetings, conventions and exhibitions hub. With great versatility featuring 42,000 m² of flexible customisable space, free WiFi, digital signage, an excellent range of culinary choices and a dedicated team of service experts, this award-winning facility can cater to events from 10 to 10,000 persons.

Only 20 minutes from Changi International Airport, Suntec Singapore is conveniently located in the Central Business District and just minutes from the city’s entertainment and cultural attractions. Suntec Singapore offers direct access to 5,200 hotel rooms, 1,000 retail outlets, 300 restaurants, 6 museums and Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay.

SPIN Names Industry Veteran ​Rod Abraham as Executive Director

SPIN: Senior Planners Industry Network has selected as its Executive Director Rod Abraham, veteran industry leader and consultant. Abraham replaces Mike Vennerstrom, CMP, who served as interim Executive Director since January.

SPIN, founded by Shawna Suckow in 2008, has quickly grown to 3,000+ senior planner members who have at least ten years’ experience. According to Suckow, “SPIN is ready to move to the next level of growth, and value to both our planner members and our supplier partners. I know Rod has the industry experience, reputation, relationships and business savvy to help us do that.”

Bringing invaluable experience to the team
A charter member of Meeting Professionals International (MPI), his service and recognition includes two-time Chair of the MPI Foundation board of trustees, member of the MPI international board of directors, recipient of MPI’s first-ever Appreciation Award, MPI International Planner of the Year and trustee of the Society of Incentive Travel Executives Foundation.

A former association executive, Abraham left his senior vice president position to pioneer outsourced meeting management services. He is also the founder and former chief executive of PMPN, the Professional Meeting Planners Network (now PlannerNet). Named one of the meeting industry’s 25 Most Influential, Abraham has been an advisor to industry groups and has served in numerous leadership positions locally, nationally and internationally. He continues his longtime passion of helping entrepreneurs start, survive and succeed as small business owners.

On a local level, Abraham’s service has included president of the MPI Greater Philadelphia Chapter and president of the Delaware Valley Society of Association Executives. He also chaired the Durham Convention Center Authority. He was named Planner of the Year by his Philadelphia-based MPI peers.

A sought-after thought leader, Abraham has helped lead several industry standards-setting initiatives and has served on advisory boards of Disney, Omni, Sonesta and Westin, the International Association of Conference Centers and Certain Software. He has been a guest lecturer at Drexel University, University Nevada-Las Vegas, Virginia Tech, East Carolina University and UNC-Charlotte.

Rod now brings his years of expertise to help SPIN. “I am excited, energized and anxious to get started. I look forward to working with Shawna, her team and the many volunteer leaders whose commitment has achieved an impressive foundation for future growth.”

For more information:
Shawna Suckow – Shawna@spinplanners.com, 651.470.0066
Rod Abraham – Rod@spinplanners.com, 919.280.0889

Business cities expert, Greg Clark, announced as IMEX in Frankfurt 2017 keynote

Greg Clark, a leading advisor, advocate and mentor on cities and businesses will be the keynote speaker at the IMEX in Frankfurt Opening Ceremony 2017, and will also speak at the show’s industry-leading advocacy event, the IMEX Politician’s Forum.


With an increasing number of destinations around the globe consistently understanding the full power and impact of their ‘beyond tourism’ benefits, his contribution is likely to be widely anticipated.    


Greg holds many high-level positions and honours including Chairman of the Business of Cities and Chairman of the OECD LEED Forum on Local Development and Investment Strategies. He is a Global Fellow of the Metropolitan Programme and Global Cities Initiative at The Brookings Institution, Professor and co-Chairman of City Leadership Initiative’s Advisory Board at University College London, and a Senior Fellow at the European Urban Land Institute.


Rod Cameron, Executive Director at the Joint Meetings Industry Council (JMIC), who is instrumental in planning the Forum programme, explains:


“From his position as a global authority and advisor on city development, Greg Clark has come to appreciate the fundamental role that conferences, conventions and exhibitions play in facilitating the transitions and advancements cities and countries must make in order to pursue their economic and social development aspirations.


“At IMEX in Frankfurt, he will explain how this knowledge can be used to strategic advantage by governments, and his participation is another significant step toward the broadening appreciation of the meetings industry as an instrument of global economic and societal advancement at a time when this has become particularly critical in maintaining international progress.”


For more than a decade, the IMEX Politicians Forum has brought meetings industry leaders together with representatives of governments and government agencies to provide a platform for dialogue and a focus for advocacy efforts. In recent years, the Forum has gained more momentum, reflecting a new awareness and appreciation of the importance of political advocacy among destinations worldwide.


Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, adds: “As a global cities expert, Greg has significant insight into the role of meetings and events in transforming the economic future of cities across the world. He is one of many expert speakers and innovations we have lined up for the show, which promise to deliver unparalleled insight, education and business opportunities.”


Political advocacy remains high on the agenda at IMEX, and the Politicians Forum will once again bring together 40+ politicians, including national and regional government ministers, and political influencers plus 80 industry leaders. It is one of several of the show’s major features to receive a new format and new speakers for 2017. These include Association Day, which will have a tightly tailored new programme, and Exclusively Corporate, the show’s dedicated education and networking day for in-house (corporate) meetings planners and directors, which has also been carefully redesigned.


IMEX is also set to announce a series of new educational initiatives in the new year.

Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre Gains EarthCheck Certification For The Tenth Consecutive Year

“Gaining our 10th consecutive EarthCheck Bronze certification affirms our commitment to being an internationally recognised convention centre that operates its business in a responsible and sustainable manner. It also reflects our support of the long-term sustainability goals of the business events industry in Malaysia,” explains Pryor.

The EarthCheck certification encompasses 8 areas of assessment, Policy, Energy, Water, Waste Sent to Landfill, Community Commitment, Paper Products, Cleaning Products and Pesticide Product.

“The effort and dedication demonstrated by every team member is integral in our endeavour to maintain this globally-recognised and respected certification. The benchmarks set by EarthCheck are a strong motivator for us to continue implementing sustainable best practices into our business operations.”

According to Pryor, three of the Centre’s areas of assessment including, waste sent to landfill, paper products and cleaning products were 91%, 100% and 100% above the best practice level, which received a star rating.

Over the next 12 months, the Centre aims to achieve best practice level in the remaining assessment areas, he concluded.

For all the latest news and information on the Centre, visit www.klccconventioncentre.com.

The Luxurious New MGM National Harbor, Opening This December on the Banks of the Potomac River, Accepted as the Newest Member of Associated Luxury Hotels International (ALHI)

NATIONAL HARBOR, MD (November 2016) – Maryland’s luxurious new MGM National Harbor, which will open this December, has been accepted as the newest member of Associated Luxury Hotels International (ALHI). Located just minutes from Washington, D.C., on the banks of the scenic Potomac River, the luxurious new $1.4 billion destination resort will be an amazing addition to the skyline of our Nation’s Capital. The resort is now served by the ALHI Global Sales Organization to the North American Meetings & Incentives marketplace, according to ALHI President Jim Schultenover.

Featuring a contemporary and progressive design, the world-class MGM National Harbor will be like no other in the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia region. Offering 308 elegant guest rooms and suites, the stunning resort will have 53,000 square feet of versatile meeting space, which includes the 16,137-square-foot MGM Grand Ballroom, boasting a wall of floor-to-ceiling windows with sweeping views of the Potomac River. Additional meeting and event options include the 4,300-square-foot Bellagio Ballroom, the Grand Ballroom Terrace, a state-of-the-art 3,000-seat theater, and picturesque Potomac Plaza (overlooking the harbor with breathtaking views of the Potomac and the nation’s capital). The well-appointed guest rooms and suites will have modern amenities, a 48-inch HD LCD TV, and high-speed Wi-Fi. In addition, the resort will offer a 125,000-square-foot casino, a 27,000-square-foot spa, celebrity chef restaurants, an authentic Pan Asian restaurant, a sports bar, patisserie, food market, and luxury retail shops. The resort is just seven miles from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), and 36 miles from both Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI) and Dulles International Airport (IAD).

In addition to becoming a new Member in ALHI’s worldwide portfolio, MGM National Harbor becomes the newest option in the “ALHI Entertainment & Gaming Collection” luxury brand segment.

“Featuring an incredible setting on the Potomac, just minutes from Washington, D.C., MGM National Harbor is an all-new, world-class meeting option for groups of all sizes,” said Schultenover. “We are proud and excited to showcase this outstanding new option to groups across North America.”

The resort is owned and operated by MGM Resorts International. The addition to ALHI’s portfolio further expands the longstanding relationship ALHI has with providing its Global Sales Organization (GSO) sales services across America and Canada to the MGM Resorts International family of resorts over the past 15 years.

In addition to MGM National Harbor, ALHI’s distinguished portfolio also features such other exceptional MGM Resorts International hotels and resorts as Las Vegas’ spectacular 4,004-room ARIA Resort & Casino and the adjacent all-suite, non-gaming Vdara Hotel & Spa; the renowned AAA Five-Diamond Bellagio; the acclaimed 5,000-room MGM Grand Las Vegas; the exquisite Skylofts at MGM Grand, located on the top two floors of MGM Grand; the adjacent and luxurious all-suite, non-gaming The Signature at MGM Grand; the famed Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, featuring 3,220 newly remodeled rooms and 2 million square feet of meeting space; the stylish, and incorporated 1,117-suite Delano Las Vegas; the AAA Four-Diamond, 3,044-room The Mirage; and Monte Carlo Resort and Casino, featuring 2,992 well-appointed rooms and 30,446 square feet of meeting space. ALHI’s distinctive membership also includes MGM Resorts International’s extraordinary 1,740-room Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, the largest meeting resort or hotel in Mississippi; the AAA Four-Diamond MGM Grand Detroit, offering 30,000 square feet of meeting and event space; and the AAA Four-Diamond Borgata Hotel & Casino, featuring 2,800 guest rooms and 88,000 square feet of flexible meeting space in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

ALHI, the leading independent Global Sales Organization serving the North American Meetings & Incentive (M&I) marketplace, provides one-call local access for its distinguished Membership of over 250 luxury-level hotels and resorts, plus an Alliance including 23 luxury cruise ships appropriate for M&I programs, and Destination Management Companies (DMCs) in over 100 locations worldwide. The member dues-funded ALHI GSO has been serving its clientele with an impressive variety of Meeting & Incentive solutions around the globe for over 30 years.

ALHI (alhi.com) is a membership-based, dues-funded Global Sales Organization, providing extensive GSO sales services throughout the United States and Canada at no cost to the Accounts, while providing valuable services, expertise, local connectivity, market intelligence, and account advocacy.

Collectively ALHI is prepared to assist Accounts in the U.S. and Canada with their programs in the U.S.A. and over 90 other countries worldwide. ALHI provides a team of experienced, proven and knowledgeable sales professionals for Account advocacy with full market one-call professional GSO sales assistance and access to their distinctive hotels, resorts, and venue resources for M&I programs of any size and scope worldwide. ALHI helps Accounts best achieve their objectives and budgets, with distinctive venues, vital insights, and responsible service to enhance the ease and success of their programs.

For more information about ALHI, to inquire about any of the ALHI portfolio properties and Alliance partners, and/or to acquire a free copy of ALHI’s new “2017 Meeting Facilities Guide” or the ALHI app, contact your nearest of the 20 ALHI Global Sales offices situated coast-to-coast in the United States and in Canada, or call the “ALHI Group Desk” toll-free at 866-303-ALHI (2544), and visit alhi.com .

ALHI Global Sales offices are located in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Connecticut, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Louisville, New York City, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Richmond, Southern California (3), Toronto, Washington, D.C., and Washington (state). For specifics, go to alhi.com to identify the nearest “ALHI GSO Team” sales professionals in your state/area.

PURPOSE BUILT EXHIBITION SPACE & A PERFECT LOCATION MAKES THE CENTRE THE TOP CHOICE AND A WIN-WIN FOR EXHIBITION ORGANISERS!

The Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre (the Centre) has been utilising all of its 11 years of experience and creativity to craft customised event solutions in order to help Exhibition Organisers get more value from their event budgets. In particular, the Centre’s Exhibition team has been particularly innovative and flexible in adapting its solutions to the changing environment.

The Centre’s General Manager, Alan Pryor explains, “We have adopted a partnership approach that strengthens our client retention and future client collaboration. Our Exhibition team sits down with each client to discuss and analyse their event. Then, based on our extensive experience and venue capabilities, we provide in-depth, strategic feedback on the event logistics, operational support and programme content. By doing so we help the Event Organiser to maximise floor space, reduce build up and breakdown time and apply a flexible mind-set to drive cost containment without negatively impacting the content of the event.”

“Some venues simply want to sell as much space to their clients as they can, but we have found that adopting a customised, partnership approach that results in a successful event, is much more productive as it generates win-wins for everyone involved and more recurring business.” Pryor continued.

Part of this ‘customised’ approach has been a willingness by the Centre to use its floor space unconventionally – providing event organisers with additional options and different experiences for their guests. An example of this was the recent ARCHIDEX’16 exhibition held in July 2016. In collaboration with the client, the Centre’s team successfully transformed the concourse parking area into a new exhibition space hosting 65 booths complete with air conditioning and utility services – providing a fresh space for visitors to this recurrent exhibition to enjoy.

Pryor elaborated, “When it comes to Exhibitions, turnaround is a major factor in the overall cost of an event. Fortunately, we benefit from the fact that we are a purpose-built venue, which provides us with many inbuilt advantages, such as a full truss system and underground trunking for utility services. We have also developed highly detailed traffic management and loading/unloading schedules based on international best practices, which ensure that the build-up and breakdown of events run extremely smoothly. These features can cut days off the event and help save our clients’ money, enabling them to focus on the content!”

“Our location in the KLCC precinct, at the iconic heart of Kuala Lumpur, provides a fantastic advantage for Exhibition Organisers due to the superb travel connectivity and the sheer number of people visiting, living and working in the area, all of whom are potential event guests and literally on our doorstep. Managing convention centre in a built up commercial area can be challenging, but we have invested heavily in developing and retaining a dedicated team that understand these issues and ensure that the event logistics run like clockwork,” Pryor concluded.

The Centre’s willingness to provide tailor-made solutions and apply an adaptable mindset gives event planners the opportunity to enhance the experience of their participants and to use the Centre’s business philosophy to enhance the delivery and outcomes of their events.

For all the latest news and information on the Centre, visit www.klccconventioncentre.com

PCMA 20 IN THEIR TWENTIES WINNERS SELECTED

PCMA to honor top young professionals at Convening Leaders in Austin, TX – January 8-11, 2017

The Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) has selected the 2017 class of its 20 in their twenties program.

The 20 in there Twenties program, supported by the PCMA Education Foundation, is designed to engage the best and brightest young professionals in the meetings and business event industry.  By recognizing emerging leaders – and their talents – PCMA helps to support a new generation of business event strategists around the world.

20 in their Twenties Class of 2017

  • ·      Derek Anderson, Washington State Association of Counties, Olympia, WA
  • ·      Vanessa E. Bass, CMP, HMCC, New York, NY
  • ·      Alexandra Deering, Intuitive Surgical, Sunnyvale, CA
  • ·      Matthew B. Fox, Meeting Management Services, Inc., Washington, DC
  • ·      Christine Frye, CTA, National Trade Productions, Alexandria, VA
  • ·      Tessa Kalfell, Visit Seattle, Seattle, WA
  • ·      Eric Kincaid, Destination DC, Washington, DC
  • ·      Holly Lammert, Explore St. Louis, St. Louis, MO
  • ·      Amanda Marochko, DES, TQ, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • ·      Megan Martin, CMP, National Conference of State Legislatures, Denver, CO
  • ·      Johnny Martinez, ShockLogic, London, UK
  • ·      Kaitlyn Palatucci, American Frozen Food Institute, Arlington, VA
  • ·      Allison Perrelli, CMP, Conference & Logistics Consultants, Annapolis, MD
  • ·      Morgan Prewitt, CMP, McCormick Place, Chicago, IL
  • ·      Katherine Sinnen, CMP, American Orthopaedic Association, Rosemont, IL
  • ·      Nichole Steele, Experience Grand Rapids, Grand Rapids, MI
  • ·      Naida S. Struyk, CMP, National Contract Manager Association, Ashburn, VA
  • ·      Wei Nei Tan, Sarawak Convention Bureau, Sarawak, Malaysia
  • ·      Lindsey Walker, Visit Anaheim, Anaheim, CA
  • ·      Andrias White, MBA, CMP, CSEP, Events DC, Washington DC

“This is our fourth class and with each one, we are struck by the passion and insights these individuals bring to the business events community.  It is our honor to recognize excellence in these bright and innovative leaders,” said Deborah Sexton, PCMA President and CEO.

Criteria for applicants was to be employed full time in the business event industry, be 29 years old or younger at the time of recognition and to demonstrate ways they consider themselves to be industry leaders. Applicants were not required to be PCMA members. A Committee made up of 20 in their twenties alumni and veteran industry professionals reviewed more than 60 applications in detail before deciding on the class.

The individuals selected will receive complimentary registration to attend PCMA’s signature event, Convening Leaders this January in Austin, TX; the Education Conference in New York City, NY in June 2017; as well as receive one year of PCMA membership.  In addition, the award includes funds to cover travel expenses for Convening Leaders, membership and registration discounts for the next two years. They will also have the opportunity to be paired with an industry leader for three mentoring sessions to assist in further development of their innovation and career.

Recipients will be recognized at Convening Leaders in January, as well as in Convene Magazine and other PCMA communications.

The next application for submissions will open in the summer of 2017.

Savour the Taste of Joy from only $60++/guest

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Celebrate with Suntec Singapore and experience the delightful flavours inspired by the joy of Christmas, crafted specially by our award-winning culinary brigade. Enjoy a sumptuous festive feast in the comfort of your own private dining room with our impeccable service.

Our Christmas Year-end Packages from $60++ per guest include:

  • Free flow coffee and tea during meal service
  • Christmas-themed centrepieces
  • Complimentary parking for up to 30% of guaranteed attendance
  • Free venue-wide high-speed WiFi
  • Stage with rostrum and audiovisual set
  • Dedicated Experience Manager
  • Complimentary listing on The Big Picture (World’s Largest HD Video Wall)*

To book your Christmas Year-end Package, please call +65 6337 2888 or email sales@suntecsingapore.com.

Innovation and Energy Drive Business at IMEX America

The sixth IMEX America set new records all around the show, reported IMEX Group Chairman Ray Bloom as this year’s event drew to a close.

There was a record number of exhibiting companies – 3,250, a 4.8% increase on 2015 – representing 139 countries. They included 69 new booths and another 69 booths had expanded year on year. Together they created the largest ever IMEX America.

Well over 3,000 hosted buyers attended the show this year, also a new record.

An important new pinnacle was reached in the number of appointments. More than 60,000 individual appointments and booth presentations were made, while there were 10,000 attendances by buyers at group appointments. This represented a 5% increase in appointments on 2015.

This year IMEX America introduced a new feature to its appointment scheduling system – appointment types. When making an appointment buyers were asked to specify the reason for the meeting; as well as being invited to attach a profile or mini-RFP to their appointment.

This year IMEX America introduced a new feature to its appointment scheduling system – appointment types. When making an appointment buyers were asked to specify the reason for the meeting; as well as being invited to attach a profile or mini-RFP to their appointment.

The result was that the proportion of appointments with RFPs attached increased significantly from 51% of appointments in 2015 to 69% this year.

Ray Bloom commented: “This is an important innovation enabling both buyers and exhibitors to be better prepared for their meetings. It has made a great impact on the appointments taking place on the show floor.”

Michelle Romein, Director of Corporate Events, Americas for Hyatt Hotels & Resorts validated Bloom’s observation. “The new appointment profiles and types have been valuable to us, particularly in helping us to allocate the most appropriate person to the meeting.”

Important initiatives and innovation

The Exhibition and Meetings Safety and Security Initiative (EMSSI) was launched at the show, attended by Bruce Davidson, director of the U.S Office of SAFETY Act Implementation. Ray Bloom said; “There is no greater issue facing our industry and to start the process of agreeing a comprehensive set of nationally recognized event security guidelines and standards is an extremely important and valuable step for everyone.”

A series of event tech, innovation and sustainability tours were among the many new initiatives in the show floor education program which this year offered a record 269 sessions. 86% of these sessions were assigned with CEs for CMP certification, more than ever before. A new Senior Planner Open Forum was successfully introduced for those with 10 years plus experience and the daily MPI keynotes attracted great interest and gathered strong positive feedback.

Ray Bloom reported that more than 1,000 delegates attended educational events on Smart Monday, powered by MPI, and supported by association partners, IAPCO, ICCA, ASAE, PCMA, HSMAI, DMAI, SITE, GBTA, GMIC and ECM. The new programs for Association Focus and the Executive Meeting Forum and this year’s PCMA Business School were all notable successes that day.

More than 40 leading buyers from the corporate sector who control annual meetings budgets in excess of $3.4billion attended the annual Executive Meetings Forum. The group included senior executives from Cisco Systems, EY Group, Wells Fargo and BP.

The introduction of the Zenvoy business networking software to help participants make connections had generated more than 3,000 introductions so far and more are expected over the coming months.
In addition, IMEX America is now a magnet for the industry. Ray Bloom says “Many people say to me ‘everyone in the industry is here this week.’

There is great camaraderie here, not only around the show floor but also at key events such as SITE Nite North America, at the CIC Hall of Leaders Reception, CEIR Golf Classic and last night’s superb MPI Foundation Rendezvous, the IMEX America Night.’

IMEX America continued to develop its CSR & Sustainability activities, introducing Garbage Grabbers-Clean Up Las Vegas on Monday, a #GreenCaffeine campaign as well as a CSR & Sustainability Showcase at the show entrance. All these initiatives had a great impact while this year’s IMEXrun attracted over 800 runners.
To further enhance the buyer experience, the IMEX Group has appointed DoubleDutch as the new mobile solution provider for IMEX in Frankfurt and IMEX America. DoubleDutch is the global leading provider of event apps and the Live Engagement Platform that allows attendees to engage and participate in conversations real-time via the digital channel.

Before concluding Ray Bloom said; “This has been an exciting week for doing business, learning and networking. But also the high quality of the booths and the tremendous energy of the exhibitors and buyers has made an enormous contribution. They have created a great atmosphere around the show.’

Bloom also announced the dates for IMEX America in 2019 (10 – 12 September) and 2020 (15 – 17 September).

Ray Bloom was joined on stage by show partner executives Matthew Marcial, VP of Education and Events at MPI, Chris Meyer, VP of Global Business Sales for the LVCVA and Chandra Allison, Vice President of Sales for The Venetian®|The Palazzo®.

How to convince a resistant audience – PCMA Business School at IMEX America suggests emotion is the key

Meeting professionals from across the US and the globe learned how to fine-tune their business relationship skills, and went home inspired to practice on their children, friends and even the family dog.

In the course of a single afternoon at the third PCMA Business School (held as part of IMEX America’s Smart Monday) attendees learned just how much human instinct and animal behaviour govern our reaction to the world and people around us.

Facing a sceptical audience who are reluctant to listen, let alone consider the ideas being explained to them, is a challenge familiar for presenters. So PCMA’s latest MBA-level education course “Make your ideas stick with persuasive presentation skills”, sponsored by Synchronicities, proved to be a magnetic prospect.

The speaker, highly acclaimed expert Richard Cox, lecturer in organizational behavior at Stanford University Graduate School of Business and founder of People Rocket, captured his audience, urging them to ‘risk becoming human’. Time and again Cox demonstrated the power of emotion and well-crafted storytelling to achieve stronger connections and build more meaningful relationships, be it with colleagues or clients.

He revealed a number of useful engagement tricks, such as how to use drama, where and when to introduce suspense or surprise and, importantly, mystery. Cox urged his audience to practice their newly discovered tools with their children, in the car and even in a single minute before entering a meeting room. He explained: “We all know how to tell good stories…it’s innate. I started my career as a computer technical engineer and learned how to hone my own communication skills through years of improv. If I can do it, anyone can.”

Later on he talked about the differences between power, status and authority – and how dangerous it can be for those who confuse one with the other. “We all know people who have authority – the title – but not the status to perform effectively. To develop really sound, satisfying relationships we need to respect each other. True success isn’t about power play. Good leaders, for example, love their organisations and their employees. They are authentic and know that having an attitude of service widens their range of influence – and their performance,” he explained.

Sherrif Karamat, COO of PCMA said: “Business events are a key driver of any organization’s business objectives, and PCMA’s Business School at IMEX America is intended to equip today’s business event strategists, and meeting professionals with the knowledge and insights they require to ensure that they are achieving success through events.”

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group commented: “The PCMA Business School has quickly become an important element of Smart Monday at IMEX America. It is one of the higher level educational sessions that meet the needs of both buyers and suppliers in the industry and we are proud to be able to deliver this in partnership with PCMA. Once more it has proved to be a really engaging and thought-provoking session. Good business relationships are all about influence, communication and connection – and I know Richard’s audience today were inspired and empowered on all of these fronts.”

The next PCMA Business School will take place at IMEX in Frankfurt 2017. More information will be released shortly.

The PCMA Business School was founded on the belief that business events require both strategy and a high level of business acumen. PCMA Business School programs help to hone the business skills of event strategists by delivering a high level of interactive education sessions, delivered by some of the best business education professionals in the world.