IMEX America 2015: preview

Larger hosted buyer groups and a rise in exhibitor numbers at this year's Imex America reflect the industry's positive energy.

IMEX America
IMEX America

On 13-15 October, event professionals from around the globe will swarm on Las Vegas' Sands Expo for the fifth Imex America show, where more exhibitors, larger hosted buyer groups and a reformatted education programme await.

A show on the rise

Last year's show outgrew the previous one by seven per cent, attracting a total of 2,900 hosted buyers that included representatives from the likes of Coca-Cola, Microsoft, Toyota and Wells Fargo. The show floor space increased by 13 per cent and the number of one-to-one meetings grew to 53,000, showing that business was booming in 2014.

This year's show will welcome more than 60 first-time exhibitors, including Cincinnati USA, Paraguay CVB, Taiwan and Cuba Travel Services, while almost 50 returning exhibitors, such as Accor Hotels, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts and Thailand, have increased their booth size. Carina Bauer, CEO of the Imex Group, believes that this growth typifies the overall optimism around the global meetings industry.

"We think it is reflective of the positive energy building across the US and global meetings-and-events industry right now. There is a lot of business to be done, new connections and partnerships to be forged, and always best practices to be shared."

Educating the industry

Education content at Imex America 2015 will be a major focus once again across the three-day show, but a revamped format will give buyers and suppliers alike more to think about.

All content will be located at the Inspiration Hub and, with the aim of appealing to different learning methods, will be split up into six areas. These will include seminar rooms; a campfire area; a Hot Topic area that will provide the opportunity to debate industry news with peers; and a Meet The Expert Clinic, offering individual appointments with industry thought leaders. A Research Pod and Creativity Zone will showcase the latest data and innovations driving the events industry today.

In total, more than 150 education sessions will take place under the banner of ten key topics: Business Skills; Marketing & Communications; Risk Management & Compliance; Technology & Social Media; Trends & Research; Creative Learning; Health & Wellbeing; Diversity; Sustainability; and General Education.

A notable addition this year will be sessions tailored to young professionals in the industry, for anyone with up to three years' experience.

Imex Strategic Partner MPI will return for another year to deliver a series of keynotes for mid-level and senior event planners. New to the programme in 2015 is Smart Monday, a full day of free education that will take place on the eve of the show, with leadership, technology and sustainability all on the agenda.

Nightly networking

There is plenty of fun to be had at this year's show with the usual headline networking events making a return. SITE Nite North America will be the curtain raiser for the show on 12 October, where SITE members and industry professionals will head to Omnia Nightclub at the infamous Caesars Palace. The MPI Foundation Rendezvous will take place on 14 October at Orais, The Cromwell.

C&IT OFFER

C&IT is proud to be a media partner for Imex America 2015 and is offering all Imex America visitors and exhibitors a 25% discount on all advertising (print and online) when booked by 31 December 2015.

To take advantage of this offer, please contact Danielle Chapman on 020 8267 8010 or danielle.chapman@haymarket.com to talk through the available options.

Please note, to take advantage of the offer you will need to supply either your stand number or visitor reference number. This offer cannot be used alongside any other C&IT promotion or agreed rates.

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