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US and Western Europe lead market growth – AMR

The US and some Western European countries are leading market growth back to its pre-pandemic high, according to new figures.

Findings from AMR International show these nations will exceed 2019 levels by 2024, hitting up to 110% of that trade.

Meanwhile, IMEX has announced a strong performance for its latest show with 76% of hosted buyers coming from corporate and agency planners.

To learn more about how to deliver your own top value curated meeting programmes, download our Hosted Buyer Playbook.

You can your full Week in Events below.

UK, US and France leading market growth

Businesses in Western Europe and the US are spearheading market growth for the events industry, according to a new study.

Figures from the AMR’s Globex forecast shows global trade will rebound to 97% of its 2019 levels by 2024.

However, nations such as the UK, France and US are set to exceed those numbers by hitting up to 110% of their pre-Covid high.

Athan Siah, Globex 2022 co-editor, said: “We expect recovery to accelerate in 2022 as many large exhibition markets – Western Europe and the US – are free of Covid-induced restrictions.

“Given how the Covid-19 crisis has affected countries differently, recovery rates will vary by market and depend on many factors, such as restrictions on international travel, vaccination progress and underlying macroeconomic growth.”

“For some countries such as the US and the UK, exhibition activity is back in full-swing and is being bolstered by highly domestic shows.

“On the other hand, countries such as Germany and Southeast Asia are rebuilding from a highly disrupted 2021.”

Emerging markets such as Brazil and Mexico are also forecast to experience strong recovery to around 105% of their 2019 size, driven by a combination of volume recovery and inflation

China and Hong Kong are projected to reach around 90% of their 2019 size by 2024, but this would depend heavily on future coronavirus outbreaks and government response

AMR expects Russia to be the biggest laggard by far, recovering to only c. 70% of its pre-Covid size by 2024. This is due to fallout effects from the war in Ukraine and the resulting international sanctions.

How blue-dot wayfinding has transformed visitor experience

Blue-dot wayfinding is “transforming” the visitor experience at events, according to an industry leader.

This tool – which displays the location of a user on their phone – has become second nature due to the growth of apps such as Apple and Google maps.

Mark Maydon, director at Crowd Connected, sets out how bringing this feature into the events industry has unlocked “millions in value for visitors”.

The issue had been that technology used by Big Tech players does not map temporary locations – such as exhibition halls.

He wrote on LinkedIn: “Back in January the trade media picked up on our research that suggested that the value of a typical exhibition would be 20% higher if visitors had no problem finding everything they were looking for.

“Since then leading app vendors have repeatedly told us that wayfinding is a key driver that has resulted in mobile app adoption jumping 100% at some events.

“Organisers are even retitling their mobile apps to major on the navigation element, promoting the floorplan with blue dot as killer functionality.

“If 2022 has been about first movers and early adopters, 2023 promises to be the year when blue dot navigation at large-scale indoor events moves into the mainstream.

“So, no more ‘where the hell am I?’ frustration. No more getting lost. Outdoors your phone sorts that for you. Now ditto for any indoor event.

Corporate and agency planners made up 75% of IMEX hosted buyers

More than 75% of hosted buyers at IMEX America came from corporate and agency planners, according to new figures.

Numbers show business is on an international level with over 4,000 buyers from 69 countries attending the event in October.

Agency and corporate planner numbers, representing 56% and 20% of hosted buyers respectively, were on a par with last year.

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, said: “While last year’s show was the celebratory ‘coming back together’ the industry craved, this October’s edition was the business-fuelled ‘bounce-back’ we’ve all been waiting for.”

A total of 62,000 appointments between buyers and suppliers were over three days. including individual, group meetings and open-to-all booth presentations.

Meanwhile, Sarah Lloyd, director of hosted buyer programmes at IMEX, gave her insights on these curated meeting programs in our latest ebook.

Download the Hosted Buyer Playbook for more key insights from industry experts.

BVEP rebrands as UK Events

BVEP has unveiled its rebrand with the aim to reflect the group’s values after a consultation period with members.

The umbrella body and advocacy group will now be known as UK Events to strengthen its position as the collective single voice for the nation’s industry.

This change will include a retitle and a refreshed brand identity which will be gradually phased into operations and communications in the coming months. 

Chris Skeith, chairman of UK Events, said: “We are delighted to reveal the UK Events identity to our peers, members, and the wider industry and truly believe the changes better reflect the diverse nature of the events sector our partners represent which has grown to not only include meetings, conferences, exhibitions, and trade shows, but also incentive travel, event hospitality, ceremonies, sporting, cultural, outdoor and festivals.”

Montgomery chairman steps down at five decades

The chairman of international exhibition organiser Montgomery Group has stepped after over five decades at the heart of the business.  

Sandy Angus will start work as non-executive director, while in his position at Angus Montgomery Arts.

Group managing director Damion Angus has now taken on the additional role of chairman.

Sandy said: “As Montgomery Group continues to diversify into new industries and geographies, it feels like a perfect time to step down to enable younger ideas and energy to take hold. I am delighted that Damion has agreed to step up to take on the role of chairman.

“He is perfectly equipped to take the Group forward and ensure our relevance and contribution to the communities we serve.”

Damian added: “It is a great honour to become chairman of the group and to follow in the large footsteps of Sandy and Bryan Montgomery before him.

“Whilst the pandemic certainly challenged the Group on every level, I really feel we have come out of it as a much stronger business and I very much look forward to delivering on our post-Covid strategy.”

Sandy has previously served as president of UFI, chairman of the UK’s Association of Exhibition Organisers and chairman of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events. 

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