Total appointments between buyers and the show’s 3500 exhibitors rose to 68,500, up from 57,000 in 2016. In total the number of meetings increased by 20%.
Following a year of planned improvements to the appointment system, focused on educating buyers about the value of giving exhibitors mini RFPs (‘appointment profiles’) in advance, 74% of all buyer/exhibitor appointments were based on an appointment profile, an increase of 42%.
Ray Bloom, Chairman of the IMEX Group, said: "The strong level of business conducted here this week is evidence of the wholesale resilience and positive outlook of the market in what are challenging times all over the globe."
This year IMEX set out to give hosted buyers, visitors and exhibitors a higher quality of service and care, which included more space to relax and recharge. Feedback was positive with appreciation of the strong visual links between Halls 8 and 9 and the expanded show being on one level generating a much stronger sense of community and a cohesive experience.
Bloom added: "This has been our largest and most innovative show ever, with new ideas, creativity and new uses of technology everywhere. Our theme is Purposeful Meetings and there was a tremendous sense of purpose about everyone here. There is also tremendous energy and commitment. Thinking of the future and the legacy of our industry, it is heartening to see."
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