The bosses of Motivcom and Jack Morton Worldwide both welcomed the proposal, which was announced on 2 July at Eventia's AGM, stressing that a merged entity would give the event industry greater authority and lobbying power.
"I think it's a good idea," said Julian Pullan, president EMEA at Jack Morton Worldwide, an IVCA and Eventia member: "Consolidation of industry associations is a good thing generally - fewer industry associations means that each becomes more powerful." He felt that Eventia and IVCA were well aligned in terms of their size and areas of specialism.
Nigel Cooper, managing director of Motivcom's events division, was also upbeat about the proposed merger. Cooper - the founding chairman of Eventia, itself born out of a merger - said: "I'm an ardent supporter of associations merging. From a commercial perspective it makes sense - the more members you have the more revenue you can generate."
He said that he felt most members of Eventia would vote for the proposed merger, adding: "The only people who might vote against it would be those hankering for the days of the ITMA (Incentive Travel & Meetings Association)."
Chris Walters, business development manager of Logistik, also backed the move: "Logistik and fellow agencies have evolved from purely events to fully integrated communications agencies; a new association to reflect this trend would be more than welcome."
Eventia has opened a consultation process, which will run until the end of August. IVCA and Eventia members will then vote for or against a merger, with a result expected by early November.