Tag Archives: imex america

The essential questions about sustainability, CSR and meetings; a visit to IMEX America will provide all the answers – and plenty of great ideas!

What is best practice in sustainability in the meetings industry? What’s the easy way to introduce best practice? How can I articulate the business case for sustainability? How can we eliminate waste at meetings?

These are among the important questions that venue and event managers now frequently face.

They can find the answers to these and many more questions about sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) all under one roof by visiting IMEX America in Las Vegas, October 10-12. Sustainability will be one of the ten tracks that are covered by the 180 plus sessions in the vast education program at the show’s Inspiration Hub.

World class expert speakers and one-to-one consultations

From Smart Monday, October 9 until Thursday afternoon, world class experts will be leading more than a dozen workshops and campfires on all aspects of this key topic. Experts will be also available for one-to-one consultations. During Smart Monday, in a session organized by MPI, there will be opportunities to benchmark their activities against others through The Global Destinations Sustainability Index, also to look “behind the scenes” at The Venetian® | The Palazzo® and the Sands Expo® to see how the hotel and venue minimize waste and maximize recycling.

Recent research by the IMEX Group and Meeting Professionals International (MPI) reveals how far the industry has gone in progressing its approach to this issue. Nearly three quarters (72 per cent) of event strategists have increased their efforts in the last five years to put sustainability best practice into action, including 21 per cent who declare they have ‘significantly increased’ their efforts.

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, said; “As shown by our research, sustainability continues to be a key issue for meeting planners and venues alike. Attendees at all events want to know that the organizers are planning those events in a responsible way – minimizing waste and the impact on both the local and global environment. We always seek to tackle the key industry issues through our education program, as well as providing innovative ideas and solutions.”

IMEX America is again reinforcing its strong commitment to CSR and sustainability. This year for the first time it is partnering with “Spread the Word Nevada”, a literacy non-profit organization. Attendees are invited to bring their favorite book to the show to donate to the local charity which will pass them on to children and adults across Southern Nevada.

No printed catalog – saving paper

This year IMEX America has added several more sustainability initiatives. 20 metric tonnes of paper will be saved by no longer printing a show catalog, and badges will be printed on paper rather than card. For the first time also, the carpet in the aisles and in some of the booths will be made from 25 per cent recycled materials and is 100 per cent recyclable.

These new developments are in addition to the already well-established sustainability and CSR programs and best practices at the show that include waste recycling and diversion of exhibitors’ unused materials, energy use, Clean the World® hygiene kit making, Waterwise Wednesday food and drink offerings, the Badge Back program and the #greencaffeine initiative.

CSR and Sustainability Showcase

These activities will be brought together at the show at the CSR and Sustainability Showcase which is sponsored by Costa Rica and supported by AlliedPRA and GES. This will be beside the entrance to the show floor from Tuesday October 10.

For exhibitors IMEX produces a comprehensive Sustainable Exhibiting Guide, which offers tips on how to make small changes that make a big difference. The IMEX Group is also sponsoring Positive Impact’s campaign to tell the story of the power of events during the United Nations International Year of Sustainable Tourism 2017.

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, commented: “We have always been committed to sustainability, not only in sharing knowledge and encouraging best practice within the industry but also demonstrating our commitment through our own activities. We work closely with our partners including GMIC, MeetGreen® and The Venetian® | The Palazzo® and the Sands Expo® to comply with APEX/ASTM standards as far as possible and, with their help, make good progress each year.

“The Venetian® | The Palazzo® and the Sands Expo® has a program to donate unserved food from conventions to local food banks. In October, it is expected to reach a substantial milestone – 300,000 meals donated since the program began – a terrific achievement.”

“If every exhibitor and every attendee at IMEX America takes just one more practical step to help reduce waste or operate more sustainably at our show then the entire industry’s contribution to greater sustainability, its legacy, will increase immensely.”

IMEX America announces dates and venues up to 2025, confirming move to September in 2019 and 2020

The IMEX Group – organizers of IMEX America – have announced the dates and locations for their industry leading Las Vegas show through 2025.
Ray Bloom, Chairman of the IMEX Group said, “We know that our industry partners from across North America and around the world plan numerous activities and co-located events around IMEX America. In addition, the fall is a very busy period for the industry. As a result, we felt that it was important to give the industry as much notice as possible with regards to our dates and venues going forward to assist with their own planning.
“In particular, we wanted to remind the industry that we will be moving from our usual October dates to September for two (2) years in 2019 and 2020.”
In addition to confirming the dates, the IMEX Group have also announced that from 2021, after ten successful years at the Sands Expo & Convention Center, IMEX America will move to the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.

Ray went on to explain, “The Sands Expo team have been wonderfully supportive partners since well before our inaugural show in 2011 and we are looking forward to four more successful shows working with them, through 2020. Their contribution in helping us to establish IMEX America in Las Vegas as the event where everyone from our industry, from the USA and worldwide, gathers each fall has been invaluable. We are incredibly grateful for their partnership and are looking forward to continuing that partnership for many years into the future.

“However, we were not able to lock in space from 2021 onward. Therefore, after celebrating ten years working together and enjoying a fantastic relationship with the Las Vegas Sands team, we shall be moving to Mandalay Bay. We look forward to establishing successful partnerships with the Mandalay Bay and MGM Resorts International teams and we know that their world-class facilities will be an equally fitting home for the show.”

Long standing IMEX partner, the Sands Expo, commented, “As the leader of the meetings and tradeshow industry, we always felt that Las Vegas Sands was the perfect partner to assist in the launch of IMEX,” said Chandra Allison, senior vice president of sales for The Venetian, The Palazzo and Sands Expo. “It has been a pleasure helping IMEX grow to become one of the most successful annual events for meeting professionals. The show has evolved, and so has the industry. We recognize this is the right time for the show to move to its next destination. We look forward to continuing our partnership and support of IMEX America in Las Vegas for many years to come.”
Talking about their excitement in hosting the show in the future, MGM Resorts International and Mandalay Bay commented, “We are honored to partner with IMEX America and to keep such a prestigious industry event in Las Vegas. As an active supporter of IMEX, MGM Resorts International is excited to create new experiences for attendees at Mandalay Bay. We will continue to showcase the city of Las Vegas and MGM Resorts International as the leading meeting and events destination” said Stephanie Glanzer, CMP, Vice President Sales of Mandalay Bay.
Dates and Location Summary

The dates and venues for IMEX America for the next eight years will be:

  • 2018   October, 16-18   Sands Expo
  • 2019   September, 10-12  Sands Expo
  • 2020   September, 15-17  Sands Expo
  • 2021   November, 9 -11  Mandalay Bay
  • 2022   October, 25-27   Mandalay Bay
  • 2023   October, 10-12   Mandalay Bay
  • 2024   October, 8-10   Mandalay Bay
  • 2025   October, 7-9   Mandalay Bay

IMEX America, America’s worldwide exhibition for incentive travel, meetings & events, will take place from October 10 – 12, 2017 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center at The Venetian and The Palazzo, preceded by Smart Monday, powered by MPI on October 9.
Further details about the show can be found on the new-look website.

 

“The golden key to your company’s success” – white space and well-being explored through events, experts and education at IMEX America 2017

White space, “unplugging”, nutrition and mindfulness are all elements of well-being, a topic that is increasingly topping the to-do list for event strategists and meeting planners, and one that is explored in detail at IMEX America this year.

The show, taking place October 10 – 12 in Las Vegas, shines a light on all aspects of well-being with events, expert advice, activities and dedicated education sessions.

The importance of setting aside time for deliberation and insight is explored by Juliet Funt, CEO of WhiteSpace at Work, in her MPI keynote Activity is Not Productivity. According to Juliet, white space – uncommitted, flexible time with no agenda – is “the golden key to your company’s success.”

Building on this, a dedicated new white space area gives attendees the opportunity to sit and reflect on education sessions, with the chance to explore them further.

Further insights into health and well-being are delivered through the comprehensive education program which has a dedicated health and well-being track with sessions on food trends, stress, meditation and mindfulness. Author and presenter Kathy Gruver delivers a session on Navigating nutrition: what to add and subtract for better health, and Debra Zabloudil, founder of the Learning Studio, will discuss Mayhem or mindfulness: increase your emotional intelligence and balance.

All attendees can also enjoy a daily dose of well-being at the Be Well Lounge, sponsored by Hilton. Mindfulness trainer Lee Papa and her expert team at Mindful Makeovers™ believe “business and mindfulness go hand in hand” and will offer regular sessions on mindfulness and meditation every day.

On Wednesday October 11 the popular #IMEXrun returns, with hundreds of individuals and teams expected to take on the 5km route along the Strip.

Carina Bauer, CEO of IMEX Group, explains: “It’s widely recognized that physical activity contributes to well-being in both our business and personal lives. We’re finding that, increasingly, meeting professionals are keen to maintain healthy habits when traveling – as well as wanting to better understand how and what to incorporate into their own events and meetings.

“The wide range of well-being innovations at IMEX America this year support this by enabling attendees to energize and recharge so they’re on top form to make the most of and enjoy their time at the show – they’re also a valuable source of ideas for their own events.”

A survey carried out by MPI for IMEX focused on stress at work. MPI surveyed a number of meetings professionals on their ability to unplug and found that while only 5% of the meetings professionals surveyed admit to feeling no stress at work, a huge 95% struggle to separate work life from personal life.

Carina Bauer concludes: “There are many ways in which event organizers can integrate health and well-being into their activities, and they don’t have to blow the budget or completely overhaul their program. Small, simple changes such as providing healthier snacks, opportunities for physical activity and time out for reflection are all that’s required – and, we believe, the various well-being initiatives at the show will be inspiring.”

#IMEX17

To attend IMEX America as an attendee buyer, please register here.

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.

Smart Monday: “The perfect start to the week!”

“The perfect start to the week” – although Camila Pelaes, a Hosted Buyer from Colombia, was speaking about Jon Bradshaw’s opening MPI keynote session on Monday, she captured the thoughts of many of the 1,000+ meeting professionals who were in Las Vegas for Smart Monday–powered by MPI before IMEX America opened on Tuesday.

With 66 sessions arranged by MPI, plus the PCMA Business School, Association Focus, Executive Meeting Forum, the Playroom and a new Sharing Economy panel discussion, there was something for everyone at every level of seniority and experience – and plenty of opportunities to acquire CE credits.

After Jon Bradshaw shared insights and advice from behavioral psychology to help people interact more effectively, Carol Gaughan, a meeting planner from Connecticut said: “It made me feel energized, really upbeat and positive.”

Rebecca Lovelace of New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau, sponsor of Monday’s MPI Keynote said. “This was a great start to Smart Monday. It will help to keep in mind the power of interpersonal communication throughout the week.”

Rewarding

Shannon Wayt Sessions of EY Group (Ernst & Young) was one of over 40 senior corporate meeting executives from major corporations at the Executive Meeting Forum, an exclusive day of discussion, learning and networking with industry colleagues.

“This is the best and most professionally rewarding day of my year. Sharing knowledge with my peers is priceless” was Shannon’s opinion on the event. Kelly Curry of Office Depot said, “It’s been incredible. The program has been great and sharing experience with my peers stimulating.”

The Playroom brought creativity to Smart Monday. Participants bounced around ideas and tried out new creative play techniques. Kim Estep and Shari Melillo of Convention Nation thought “This is a wonderful idea, a great break from the classroom, it’s personal and hands-on. We love it.”

Creating even more customization, Association Focus had a new, highly tailored program including a new C-level learning stream led by John Graham, President and CEO of ASAE.

PCMA Business School attracted a lively audience to learn persuasive presentation skills facilitated by Richard Cox from Stanford University. Cathrine Seidel Tvede of Copenhagen CVB said “It was great to have someone from outside the industry sharing his insights. He made me realize that using emotion achieves so much more than details. It was really informative.”

The MPI sessions throughout Smart Monday are designed to help with key skills that meeting professionals need to move onward and upward in their careers. Many exhibitors including Roman Muska of the Prague Convention Bureau also took the opportunity to update their knowledge before the exhibition opens. “There’s plenty that is really valuable for exhibitors to learn as well as buyers. I’d warmly recommend it.”

Suzanne Arteaga, a Hosted Buyer from the National Fisheries Institute said. “Paws for a Break is a lovely new feature. Being able to interact with dogs during the show makes me happy.’’

Finally, Ramon Bocarro of State Farm Insurance said: ‘’IMEX delivers the best ROI of any conference! The education today is superb.’’

IMEX America research reveals the untapped potential for event technology

61.3 per cent of meeting professionals agreed that currently available event technology makes event management much easier and that it will develop and change dramatically in the next 10 years, but 92 per cent admit that meeting planners are not making the most of such technology solutions.

 

These were among the key findings of new research carried out for IMEX America by Meeting Professionals International (MPI) providing fascinating insight into the views of meeting professionals on event technology.

 

It also revealed that when buying event technology products and services, only 21.2 per cent of those surveyed approached the project with confidence.

 

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group said: “Event technology is a fast growing sector that offers vast untapped potential to help with the planning and efficient operation of events.

 

“We believe that having technology demonstrated by experts face to face is a highly effective way for buyers to get to grips with technology and discover how it could help them. At IMEX America we have facilitated this through guided tours and demonstrated such technology in dedicated educational areas. In addition, the many event technology suppliers at the show will be happy to explain the capabilities and benefits of what they offer at their booths.”

 

Among the initiatives that IMEX America has introduced to meet this need is the EventTechTours. Taking place throughout the show, they will be led by Tahira Endean, who was recognized in 2015 as one of the Top Five Women in EventTech and who now specialises in explaining the integration of technology into our lives, businesses and events.

 

Innovation Tours are also planned for Tuesday and Wednesday, led by Glenn Thayer of Emcee Squared. They will demonstrate how tech, innovation and trends can be implemented into general sessions, as well as examining the future of meeting experiences.

 

IMEX America also features the TECHknowledge Area, powered by The Meeting Pool, where experts will deliver targeted technology sessions, TECHbytes, answering questions on hot topics such as Snapchat, Slack, OneNote and wearable technology, and guide buyers through the latest tech in the Gadget Lab. More information is available here.

 

The survey also asked “what problems do you face in your day-to-day work that you would like technology to solve for you, that isn’t currently covered?” The responses revealed a strong widespread demand for ’consolidation, integration, ‘one-stop’ complete solutions and consistency.’

 

Typical of these views were requests for ‘the compilation of information from various sources/modules into a single flexibly formatted report;’ ‘a one-stop, affordable complete event management solution, from exhibitor management to budget reconciliation’; and ‘one SMMP system consolidating everything including event management and procurement’.

 

Carina Bauer concludes by adding “The industry is clearly seeing the tip of the iceberg in event technology at present. We expect there to be much more to come and we believe that by visiting the event technology area at the show and making the most of our Tours and TECHknowledge Area, buyers can learn so much that will be valuable to them in planning and running their events more effectively now and in future.”

 

IMEX America 2016 takes place from 18 – 20 October in Las Vegas. For more information about the show please visit http://www.imexamerica.com.

Executive Learning Opportunities at IMEX America Major on Knowledge Sharing, Peer-to-Peer Networking and the Business of Meetings

Senior meetings planners and professionals will find even more valuable knowledge and advice specifically geared for them as a result of innovations in IMEX America’s hallmark education program – increasing even further the range of learning at the show for higher level executives. Each tailored program or session will offer new ways to solve issues, provide opportunities to share best practices, and network with peers in similar roles.

Growth with New Senior Planner Open Forum

The new Senior Planner Open Forum has been created for professionals with 10+ years planning experience. These sessions will focus on the business of meetings with insights into team leadership, managing up and relationship development.

Participants are the driving force here, with topics chosen at an opening group brainstorm and learners have the freedom to immerse themselves in one topic or move between multiple discussions at a pace they choose.

Terri Breining of the Breining Group Inc. will facilitate this learning and growth opportunity, leading Forums at 4pm on Tuesday and Wednesday. Here are further details of the Forum.

Stanford MBA Education at PCMA Business School

For the third consecutive year at IMEX America, PCMA Business School will deliver MBA-level education from academic leaders at top universities. Persuasive presentation skills – critical for both career and personal advancement – will be the focus of the class led by Richard Cox, a lecturer in organizational behaviour at Stanford University Graduate School of Business and the founder of People Rocket.

During this extended session, students will have ample time to learn from Cox and from one another on how to find their authentic voice, help their organizations become more resilient, and bring disruptive elegance to the business of meetings.

The class, from 1.30pm to 5pm on Smart Monday, October 17th should prove to be another lively edition of this highly popular IMEX higher-level education feature.

C-Suite Knowledge Exchange at Executive Meeting Forum

A staple of IMEX America’s knowledge sharing, the Executive Meeting Forum will once again gather director, senior manager, and VP level meeting experts for exclusive networking and discussions.

During the full day program, executives from companies like Cisco, Ernst & Young, Novartis, Toyota and Wells Fargo will challenge and explore industry norms and discuss best practice in corporate meetings and events. The goal – to take their organizations and the meetings industry towards new heights and innovations.

Led by recognized industry experts Kimberly Meyer, co-founder of Meeting Analytics, and Terri Breining, the event, with its venue and lunch sponsored by Caesars Palace, will take place on Smart Monday from 8am – 5 pm followed by a reception. This event is by invitation only.

Finally, John Graham, President and CEO of ASAE, will chair a new Leadership stream at Association Focus, also on Smart Monday, adding additional senior learning for Association meeting experts. More information can be found here.

“We believe that everyone in this industry, no matter how many years they have been working in it, is keen to keep up to date with the latest thinking and ideas so they can continually carry out their role more effectively,” said IMEX Group CEO Carina Bauer. “So we have invested again in our education program, particularly to meet the needs of these higher level executives. The result is a series of what I’m sure will be fascinating and rewarding sessions.”

Registration for IMEX America is free of charge and is best completed online in advance (registration is also available at the show) https://portal.imexamerica.com/register.php.

New exhibitors, new education streams and new networking opportunities will enhance the IMEX America experience

Even more business, networking and education opportunities, backed by new CSR initiatives, await the thousands of meetings professionals arriving in Las Vegas for the sixth IMEX America on October 18-20th.

 

First time exhibitors from across the world, the US and from all sectors of the industry will be among more than 3000 organisations exhibiting at the Las Vegas show this year.

 

They include many North American destinations, namely Alabama, Albuquerque, Destination Michigan, Oklahoma, Reno-Sparks CVB, Rochester, Travel Tacoma and Pierce County and Visit Spokane.

 

Other exhibitors new to IMEX America are Global Gifting, Hanoi Department of Tourism, HB Hospitality, Legends Attractions, Slovenian Tourist Board, and World Experts DMC.

 

As the meetings market’s appetite for technology grows, so does the variety of tech companies exhibiting. This year Bizly, EventBank, Event Collab, Loopd Inc. (winner of last year’s #IMEXpitch tech start-up competition), MeetingHand and Scout20 are all new. They add to the wealth of technology solutions on show for meetings planners, which cover event apps, registration systems, social media, software, video and more. This provides the opportunity to see and experience a whole range of tech solutions in one place.

 

Other exhibitors stepping up their show floor presence with bigger booths include the Nashville CVB, NYC & Company, San Francisco and Travel Portland together with a bevy of hotels including Commune Hotels & Resorts, FRI Hotels & Resorts, Preferred Hotel Group, and the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company.

 

New Senior Level Professional Development

IMEX America’s renowned education program runs all week after its usual intensive professional development start on Oct 17, Smart Monday, powered by MPI. The first of the daily MPI keynotes along with a new Association Focus program, PCMA’s Business School and the extended Executive Meetings Forum are among Smart Monday’s big learning opportunities.  

 

A new Senior Planners Open Forum has just been confirmed to run throughout the show for planners with 10+ years’ experience. These facilitated, crowd-sourced sessions will provide senior planners with an opportunity to exchange ideas and challenges on a range of topics from leading a team to proving the value of the meeting department.

 

Hosted buyer services at the show have been extended with the introduction of three new zones within the hosted buyer lounge. Each zone is supported by an exhibiting sponsor. The Hyatt Regency Recharge Zone will offer massages, manicures and cell phone recharging while Atlantis is offering a Relax Zone and Turkish Airlines are supporting the reception area and concierge services. Together the zones enhance the quality of the show experience for hosted buyers, allowing them to rest, recharge and refuel before heading off for their next appointment.

 

Appointment schedule

Online schedules are now open. These give all pre-registered hosted buyers and buyer attendees full access to the show’s appointment system, which provides them with a personal online schedule through which to make exhibitor appointments. The schedules are often booked up quickly, so buyers are being encouraged to confirm key appointments as soon as possible and send RFPs in good time. This will enable them to make the most of their time by arranging all their business meetings and schedule in all the education sessions they want to attend.

 

Zenvoy’s new ‘buyer to buyer’ networking service which facilitates introductions between buyers who share common attributes is also free for all hosted buyers and buyer attendees. In addition, the hosted buyer lounge will feature a new Networking Hub with the IMEX hosted buyer team facilitating networking sessions at key times throughout the show.

 

The show’s hallmark hosted buyer program is boosted this year by the addition of 17 new hosted buyer groups, brought to the show by Accor UK & France, ESA Latin America, HB Hospitality, Marriott Canada, Melia Hotels International – Southeast, Sandals, Signature Boston, SmithBucklin and Visit Park City.

 

First Ever CSR sponsor

CSR has also come of age with the Costa Rica Tourism Board confirmed as the show’s first ever main CSR sponsor, supported by four contributing sponsors: AlliedPRA, Exclusive Destinations & 3D Cruise Partners and GES. Their engagement helps support the show’s CSR & Sustainability Showcase, including a Clean the World Station, the ‘Badge-Back’ recycling program and Garbage Grabbers – Clean Up Las Vegas. This new Monday afternoon volunteer program invites attendees to help clean up Sunset Park.

 

Finally returning by popular demand — but always bringing fresh energy and learnings — are the Play Room (presented by Play with a Purpose) and the Be Well Lounge (sponsored by Hilton).

 

Industry ‘giving back’ continues to be a major theme of the week with the MPI Foundation Rendezvous, Site Nite North America and the CEIR Golf Tournament all returning to the show.

 

Other timeless favorites during the week include Association Evening, CIC Hall of Leaders and Pacesetter Awards, the DMC Network and Ovation Talent Search, the IMEXrun (developed by Case Imagine) and #IMEXpitch.

 

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group commented; “We continually research and monitor buyers’ changing requirements and endeavour to respond to them. The online schedules, the enhanced networking opportunities and the new senior education formats are designed to meet their needs, while giving them control over their time at the show. The opportunities to do business, learn and make connections as well as to give back to the local community are greater than ever.”

 

Registration for IMEX America is free of charge and is best completed online in advance (registration is also available at the show) https://portal.imexamerica.com/register.php.

Meeting professionals confirm healthy habits are top priority: wealth of wellbeing initiatives at IMEX America

With the benefits of healthy habits in and out of the office increasingly recognised, a survey by IMEX confirms that wellbeing remains a high priority for many meeting professionals. Over three quarters confirmed the importance of wellbeing during business travel – 79.5% of hosted buyers, 78% visitors and 83% exhibitors all stated that this was important to them in a survey of nearly 1200 people.

A series of wellbeing initiatives will be available for meeting professionals at IMEX America this year to ensure they recharge and make the most of their busy days at the show which takes place 18 -20 October in Las Vegas.

At the popular IMEXrun, participants can start their day on the right foot with a 5km route along the Strip as dawn breaks over Vegas. Developed by sports by tlc and inspired by Rio, the IMEXrun takes place on Wednesday 19 October.

Following its launch last year, the Be Well Lounge returns, sponsored by Hilton Worldwide. Mindfulness trainer Lee Papa and her expert team believe ‘business and mindfulness go hand in hand’ and will offer regular sessions on yoga, mindfulness and meditation. Wellbeing education sessions on the show floor include Why you should include wellness in your conferences by Dr Kim Bercovitz and The road warrior: staying healthy on the road, detailing ways to fit healthy eating and fitness into busy travel schedules.

Delegates at IMEX America can enjoy some ‘netwalking’ and engage with the local community by taking part in Garbage Grabbers-Clean Up in Las Vegas, a new hands-on community programme for the 2016 show.

Volunteers can join IMEX staff and the Outside Las Vegas Foundation to help clean up the city’s walking trails and parks. Part of IMEX’s overall commitment to CSR and legacy programs, sponsored by Costa Rica Tourism Board and supported by AlliedPRA, Exclusive Destinations with 3D Destinations, GES and MeetGreen, the event will take place on Smart Monday, 17 October and will be a great way to give back and ‘netwalk’ through the city’s green spaces with other meeting professionals.

Carina Bauer, CEO of IMEX Group, concludes: “It’s widely recognised that physical activity contributes to wellbeing in both our business and personal lives and many meeting professionals are keen to maintain healthy habits despite packed schedules. Our wide range of wellbeing initiatives will help them do this by enabling attendees to energise and recharge so they’re in top form to make the most of and enjoy their time at IMEX America.”

For details of how to take part in the IMEXrun visit: www.imexamerica.com/imexrun

For the Be Well Lounge schedule visit: www.imexamerica.com/about-us/vision-initiatives/be-well-at-imex/be-well-lounge

For details of how to take part in Garbage Grabbers visit: www.imexamerica.com/about-us/sustainability/legacy-projects/#GarbageGrabbers

IMEX America 2016 takes place 18 – 20 October in Las Vegas. For more information about the show please visit: http://www.imexamerica.com