The organizers of the 10th edition of IMEX, scheduled to be held at Messe Frankfurt from 22-24 May 2012, have announced further growth in the hosted buyer programme and a strong and diverse exhibitor line-up, plus a number of interesting new features.
Around 3,500 exhibitors representing over 150 countries are all set to exhibit at the award-winning trade show, scheduled to be held at Messe Frankfurt from 22-24 May 2012. The US section will be 15% larger and will include Detroit for the first time, with San Francisco also returning to the show. Cruise line Buy the Sea will exhibit for the first time, as will ATA Hotels, DMC Connection, Eventschmiede, JTB Europe, Pacific World, who will also be bringing a hosted buyer group, Best Western, Escuela y Centro de Conferencias de Monte Leon, Incentive Destinations Myanmar, Qatar Airways, Mintcentive India, Relais & Chateaux, Tumlare, Vantage, and the Venetian Macau. Last but not least, Mice Mallorca makes a welcome return and Promo Tours becomes the first independent company operating in Bosnia and Herzegovina to exhibit at IMEX.
In addition to the technology area of the show, which will be 10% larger than in previous years, the IMEX technology pavilion will showcase products and services from Amiando, ATIV Software, EventMobi, Evenium, Konnect, and Video Tattoo, amongst others. A new iPad Bar, sponsored by QuickMobile together with PSAV, will provide hands-on education on event apps. In addition, the IMEX app will be available for iPads for the first time.
Hosted buyer growth The show’s hallmark hosted buyer programme is set to bring almost 4,000 hosted buyers to the Frankfurt show. Twenty new hosted buyer groups are set to attend – half of them representing the European market, with the others focussing on long-haul buyers. Around 15% of the total hosted buyers at the show are expected from the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries. The number of buyers from Latin America and Mexico will also be higher this year and, as a direct result of success at IMEX America last October, more US groups will be present.
Free Wi-Fi Among the most significant changes that buyers and exhibitors will notice this year is the introduction of free Wi-Fi throughout the show. The service will allow everyone to browse the Web and check emails on the go. Equally, exhibitors are being encouraged to make good use of the ability to offer "stand presentations" to groups of individual buyers. This new facility will allow exhibitors to open their group appointments to more buyers and to invite individuals to join a group presentation through their online diaries, thereby maximising business opportunities and meeting time during the show.
Over 120 education choices, plus new tracks This year’s IMEX Education programme will be the largest and most diverse in the trade show’s history. Over 120 different learning opportunities will be on offer, all of them free of charge. The IMEX app will also allow visitors to save education sessions into their personal schedules for the first time. Seminar attendees will also be able to use the app to download education collateral, make notes they can then email back to themselves, and complete seminar surveys.
Planning which sessions to attend throughout the show has also been enhanced by the introduction of eight "tracks": marketing and communication; personal development; HR and professional development; social media; sustainability; technology and general education. A "Visionary Events Series" at the Inspiration Centre will also give visitors the chance to understand the dynamics behind individual meetings and events which have either pushed back boundaries or set new standards in innovation, design or impact.
New Sustainability Hub – green just keeps getting greener The Sustainability Hub (the old corporate responsibility centre), powered by GMIC (Green Meeting Industry Council), will act as a focus for environmental and community project information and will host a series of drop-in workshops, as well as offering live case studies from previous IMEX Green Award winners. "How to go green" power-sessions with advice about where and how to start, as well as information on more advanced green policies and current practices will also be back by popular demand.
Badgeback programme to benefit two Frankfurt charities For the first time, two local Frankfurt charities will benefit from the IMEX Badgeback programme: Lichtblick aktiv Schwester Sigrid, a homeless shelter run by Franciscan Sister, Sigrid Ehrlich, and Maisha’s Sewing Project, an employment programme for African women now living in Frankfurt. All visitors leaving the show will be offered the chance to deposit their recyclable and reusable badges into one of two collection bins, each representing one of the charities. Each badge will represent a donation of €1.
Reworked Association Day programme Other highlights in what promises to be a memorable 10th IMEX include a redesigned programme for Association Day. Having been running – and consistently expanding – for 10 years, the IMEX Group, together with its association partners, decided to rework the day’s education content and formats to align more closely to the evolving roles and responsibilities of association executives. As a result, all of the day’s seminars and workshops now fit into one of three new tracks: operations, executive and meetings.
10th anniversary highlights Chief among the changes designed into this year’s show to commemorate its 10th anniversary will be a special "Celebration Hour" from 5pm on Wednesday, 23 May. During this special hour exhibitors are being invited to provide entertainment, food and drink to help create a party atmosphere on the show floor. The atmosphere is expected to spill over into the IMEX Gala Dinner, later the same night at Frankfurt’s Alte Oper.
Results of the Power of 10 research study, which was commissioned by IMEX to mark its 10th anniversary, will also be presented at the show.
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