New look pays off for Confex

Last week’s International Confex recorded a 13% rise in attendance – the largest increase in seven years. More than 12,500 people attended the show, held on 20-22 February at Earls Court, according to preliminary on-site figures. It represents a significant increase in popularity for Confex compared to the 11,127 visitors in 2006. Of this year’s attendees, 8,300 were non-exhibiting visitors – an increase of 16% on the 7,211 recorded last year. Confex Group director Duncan Reid said: "It’s the first time the show has reported a significant growth for some time and it’s pleasing for us and the rest of the industry. The fact that we are looking so healthy is a good indicator of the strength of the meeting and events industry." He attributed the growth, in part, to a more creative marketing campaign, which included tailoring advertising to the readers of specific magazines. The show’s new feature areas, including bars for networking, and initiatives designed to attract and retain new visitors also boosted numbers. Among new initiatives was the enhanced education programme, which included speakers such as former political heavy-weight Alistair Campbell. "A lot of the features at the show were new this year and one of the biggest was Confex Knowledge," said Reid. Exhibitors were positive about the show: " It’s our first year here but if this is anything to go by we will be coming back next year," said Visit Barbados information officer Cedric Lynch. Next year’s show is already off to a good start. Reid said rebookings for 2008 were up 25% year on year. "About 70% of the show has been sold out already," he said. He added that he anticipated it would attract an additional 500 – 1,000 visitors. In 2008, the show will take place at Earls Court at the same time as two other shows – Technology For Marketing & Advertising and the Video Forum. "Technology For Marketing & Advertising attracts marketing directors and managers and those people also attend Confex," said Reid.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Register now
Already registered?
Sign in

How have event apprenticeships been affected by coronavirus?

How have event apprenticeships been affected by coronavirus?

A group of apprentices share their experiences of learning about the industry during lockdown.

RSVP podcast Ep6: Jessica Rabbit, fraudsters and sleeping in army trucks

RSVP podcast Ep6: Jessica Rabbit, fraudsters and sleeping in army trucks

This week's special guest is Julia Charles, managing director of Julia Charles Event Management.

LIVE UPDATES: Melbourne begins new lockdown measures

LIVE UPDATES: Melbourne begins new lockdown measures

Find out which countries are on partial or national lockdown, what travel restrictions are in place and what size gatherings are allowed.

'Working on the inaugural Invictus Games was amazing'

'Working on the inaugural Invictus Games was amazing'

A-List 2020: Rachel Douglass is a senior event manager at Yellow Fish.

Venues #LightItInRed to show support for events industry

Venues #LightItInRed to show support for events industry

Campaign to draw attention to struggling events businesses and employees lights iconic buildings red.

Dear C&IT: Graphs and data are useful but they can’t measure feelings

Dear C&IT: Graphs and data are useful but they can’t measure feelings

Metrics are great but don't forget to create a memorable experience, says Phil Staines from FIRST.

'We place a huge emphasis on talent development'

'We place a huge emphasis on talent development'

A-List 2020: Michael Gietzen is group managing director at Identity.

How automotive events are changing gear

How automotive events are changing gear

Car manufacturers are more savvy with event budgets and they want to reach more diverse audiences.

Entering a new world of data-driven events

Entering a new world of data-driven events

The current shift to digital has created huge amounts of data we can learn from, says Marble LDN's Rachel Butler.

5 ways technology can help hotels reopen safely

5 ways technology can help hotels reopen safely

New innovations will help hotels solve the challenges of coronavirus so that guests can return, says Louisa Watson of Wyboston Lakes Resort.