At this year’s ibtm world, held from 17th to 19th November in Barcelona, 7 new global themes will underpin Knowledge Programme: Connections Mean Everything, Putting Meeting Design into Practice, Tools for Planner Productivity, Industry Engagement, Inspiration from Outside, and Innovative Events and Leading Lights for Leading Events.
For this edition of SEEbtm magazine, we spoke with Mr Graeme Barnett, Senior Exhibition Director, ibtm world, about this year’s main objectives, key-note speakers as well as Knowledge Programmme and other news.
1. What are the main objectives of this year’s ibtm world?
Our main focus is to offer both buyers and suppliers a platform to grow their business in the global meetings, events, conference, incentives industry and maximise their ROI.
Ensuring the right profiling of both planners and suppliers is fundamental to the matching process and we continually strive to ensure exhibitors complete their profiles with very specific and relevant information, which is key to helping planners identify who they want to meet with. We also make sure to have the right buyers – it really is about relevance on both sides.
Our unique Hosted Buyer Programme hosts some 4,000 top level buyers with proven budget and international business to place that enable exhibitors to win and secure future business at the event. Ensuring we keep evolving the programs for the corporate, association and agency planners is key to delivering the right numbers but crucial in delivering the right quality.
ibtm world also delivers a number of networking events as well as innovative and dynamic education sessions so both learning and connecting are also key focuses for us.
This year, ibtm world is introducing seven new global themes to underpin its 2015 ibtm knowledge programme and will deliver all of its education content from a newly designed ACS Knowledge Village consisting of four purpose built theatres, which will be located on the show floor.
Key networking events include; the official ibtm world Welcome Reception taking place onsite on Tuesday 17 November and the popular ibtm world Networking Hour on Wednesday 18 November which is aimed at allowing exhibitors to organize their own receptions and social activity on their stands for all attendees. This networking hour takes place prior to the ibtm world Club Night, which will again be hosted at Opium Mar – probably considered one of the annual industry social events (www.opiummar.com).
For more information and updates please visit www.ibtmworld.com
2. What are the key features of Knowledge Programme 2015? Please tell us something about Knowledge Village.
This year we will be delivering a fresh approach to the ibtm knowledge programme introducing new content created around 7 global themes; Connections Mean Everything, Putting Meeting Design into Practice, Tools for Planner Productivity, Industry Engagement, Inspiration from Outside, and Innovative Events and Leading Lights for Leading Events. Individual sessions will be ‘linked’ to one of these themes.
Our strategy is to provide a more ‘sculptured’ program where attendees can link their personal education schedule according to these themes or can pick and choose according to individual speakers and topics. Our knowledge programme will be led by an exciting line up of influential industry experts on the many and diverse topics facing the industry now and in the future. www.ibtmworld.com/speakers
Whilst content is most definitely King, the environment in which the content is delivered is most certainly Queen and this year will see all of ibtm world’s education delivered on the show floor, located within the newly created ACS Knowledge Village, consisting of four purpose built and themed theatres.
The concept of the ACS Knowledge Village is to provide single ‘learning hub’ on the show floor, making it more accessible to visitors, Hosted Buyers and exhibitors. This is a bold and exciting move for ibtm world and reflects our desire to implement principles of meeting design to ensure both the content and environment is world-class and demonstrates our commitment to education. We are delighted to be working with such a creative and solutions-driven partner in ACS Audio Visual Solutions who have helped us deliver the vision of the ACS Knowledge Village, which is something I am really excited to see at the show.
3. Please tell us who are the key-note speakers at this year’s IBTM? What are the main topics and trends, which will be discussed?
This year seven new global themes will underpin our 2015 Knowledge Programme: Connections Mean Everything, Putting Meeting Design into Practice, Tools for Planner Productivity, Industry Engagement, Inspiration from Outside, and Innovative Events and Leading Lights for Leading Events. The Knowledge Programme will feature keynote sessions from industry thought leaders and will address diverse topics facing the industry now and in the future through sessions including:
What Can We Learn From Immersive Events? – Speaker: Deborah Armstrong, Managing Director of Strong & Co
In this session, Deborah Armstrong, Managing Director of Strong & Co will discuss what exactly ‘Immersive Events’ mean in practice and why they are so important. Deborah will share key learnings around achieving meaningful and longer lasting engagement. Through careful analysis of good and bad practice this talk aims to show you how to do it right and what the future of Experiential holds.
Engagement at Events – in partnership with ISES – Speaker: Kevin Jackson, Vice President EMEA, George P. Johnson and President of ISES UK
Engagement has long been a go-to phrase for event professionals but like many areas of our industry, there’s little consensus on what it really means. This session, delivered by Kevin Jackson, Vice President EMEA, George P. Johnson and President of ISES UK will unpack what engagement at events is and more importantly how you get audiences leaning forward instead of leaning back.
Appetite For Change – Speakers: Ivo Franschitz, Owner & Managing Director, ENITED Business Events and Vanessa Schmoranzer, Brand Leadership Consultant and Change Management Coach, ma®kenkind.de
Presented by Ivo Franschitz, Owner & Managing Director, ENITED Business Events and Vanessa Schmoranzer, Brand Leadership Consultant and Change Management Coach, ma®kenkind.de, this session will address the shifting needs of professional business events and review them from the perspective of the host and of the participant.
The ibtm world Trends Watch 2015 – Speaker: Rob Davidson, Managing Director, MICE Knowledge
In this ever popular session, Rob Davidson, Managing Director, MICE Knowledge will give the attendees a comprehensive and in-depth overview of key global trends in the industry which will help them shape their business strategy.
For further information on the ibtm world Knowledge Programme, please visit www.ibtmworld.com/knowledge
4. Can you tell us something about Technology and Innovation Watch? What are the benefits that this award brings?
We have made some changes to the annual Technology Watch Award to incorporate the broader theme of innovation. The Technology and Innovation Watch Award 2015 will now illustrate the continuing evolution of the technology sector whilst recognising the significant contributions made by organisations as they look to innovate across the sector. At the same time, the submission and judging process has evolved with the 10 leading submissions shortlisted in advance of the event (by the judging panel) and will feature in the Innovation Zone , as one of the 2015 Top 10 Innovations identified with the potential to make a real impact on the industry.
One of these will then be selected as the overall winner (also voted by the judging panel), and will benefit from a global pre- promotional campaign via ibtm world (www.ibtmworld.com), the leading global event for the meetings and events industry, but also a prominent presence in the Innovation Zone, and the opportunity to present their winning product at the show in Barcelona. www.ibtmworld.com/techwatch
5. What is the current situation in terms of number of exhibitors compared to previous years?
We have seen slightly earlier decision-making, especially from long-standing exhibitors, and new prospects – particularly from Europe. Generally there is a positive feeling about the event, a lot is due to the success of last year’s event but also the desire for suppliers to drive sales forward and for planners to be sourcing for more events. Many participants thought 2014 was the best edition to date, largely because of the quality of buyers. And generally, even if the global economic slowdown was patchy with some regions suffering more than others, many areas recognise the positive impact of investment in tourism and particularly business tourism and are clearly booming: London and the UK for example is seeing record breaking arrivals.
Some of the companies returning include Accor, Corinthia Hotels International, Finland Convention Bureau, Visit Denmark, Iberostar, Kempinski, Monaco, Starwood Hotels, Switzerland Tourism and Visit England. For further information, please visit www.ibtmworld.com/directory
2015 will also be the year of the largest number of new exhibitors, including exciting brands and destinations. Just some of them include Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria; Secretaria Nacional de Turismo de Paraguay; Commune di Napoli; Ministere de l’Economie Direction Generale du Tourisme, Luxemburg; Ibiza Convention Bureau; Prague City Tourism; India Tourism; Basque Country Tourist Board – Basque Tour; Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria; Sri Lanka Convention Bureau; Dorchester Collection, Europalco, GOAPP, Sandals and Beaches Resorts, Etud Event Technologies, TapCrowd by etouches and World Hotels.