Last week, IMEX 2014 took place in Frankfurt. If, like me, you didn't have an opportunity to attend this year, here are a few highlights.
In its 12th year, IMEX Frankfurt was the largest show so far. There were 9,000 visitors from 77 countries. About 4,000 were hosted buyers. There were 20 new hosted buyer groups including Travel Alberta and Hong Kong Tourism Board. New this year, a pre-show concierge helped 1st time hosted buyers get the most of their experience. Each hosted buyer attending IMEX for the first time was contacted by telephone to determine if they had any questions.
The number of exhibitors also increased. IMEX attracted 64 new exhibitors including including Azerbaijan, Georgia, Hong Kong, Royal Caribbean Cruises and Peru.
New areas on the trades show floor included a Meeting Design Hub, a Technology Pavilion for technology exhibitors and a Tech Hub giving attendees the opportunity to test pilot event technology.
The educational program was strong. The new Creativity Zone at The Inspiration Centre featured a Hot Topic Tables with moderated peer-to-peer sessions and a new Meet the Expert Clinic. At the CIC Inspiration Centre, Kevin White, Chief Strategist and CEO of XPL, explored the ingredients that give trend setters their edge. At the Research Pod, Alejandro Contreras from American Express Meetings and Events presented the results of research into the changing expectations of virtual and social media meeting attendees.
Here, an exhibitor and a hosted buyer share their views about the value of IMEX:
As always, there was a Corporate Social Responsibility component to IMEX. On Monday 25 hosted buyers from around the world joined Celebrity chef Werner Mansshardt to prepare spaetzle, a German specialty, for a meal that was served at Haus Lichtblick, a shelter for the homeless.
For more details, access IMEX Frankfurt Daily Papers.
IMEX will take place again from October 14 - 16, 2014 in Las Vegas and in Frankfurt from May 19 - 21, 2015.
Photo Credits: IMEX Group