A brisk business pace defined the 2013 IMEX tradeshow in Frankfurt, which ran from May 21-23.
The IMEX show came to a close with more than 3,900 hosted buyers from 75 countries attending the show among a visitor total of nearly 9,000 with 27 percent of them from long-haul markets, which is up from 25 percent in 2012.
“From business-appointment numbers to hosted-buyer growth and visitor numbers, this has been another strong year,” said Ray Bloom, chairman, IMEX Group. “Above all, we now have good technologies in place which support business growth for exhibitors and buyers and we look forward to building on this in 2014.”
Day one had seen 3,000 hosted buyers in the halls doing business with exhibitors, another increase on last year, with almost 3,400 on day two. This is due to growing numbers of hosted buyers staying on at the show for between two and three days as part of the program. Statistics show visitors are coming into the show for two consecutive days as well, with at least half of those who came for the first day also attending day two of IMEX.
Speaking at the show’s closing press briefing, Bloom explained changes to the design of the hosted-buyer diaries and the introduction of the single IMEX inbox for hosted buyers resulted in a new record of more than 53,000 individual appointments between buyers and exhibitors – an increase of 33 percent on 2012. Nearly 65,000 appointments took place, which included individual and group appointments and stand presentations.
The Politicians Forum saw three tourism minsters attend for the first time from Mexico, South Africa and Egypt. Bloom said such a high level of political interest in the forum was a significant breakthrough and signaled a shift in the impact being made due to the industry’s ongoing advocacy efforts. Some 27 politicians have signed the new Declaration of Support for the meetings industry, and IMEX officials are pushing to reach 100 signatories.
The IMEX Association Day brought more than 300 association executives into Frankfurt for a full day of tracked education and networking. Feedback showed the program this year was extremely well received.
“The scope, the quality and the sheer variety of the subjects covered, plus the formats such as the campfires, both suit the show and suit the way everyone now wants to learn,” said Bloom.
This year’s daily German keynotes, the German Compliance Clinic and the themed German education days had gone down very well with the German market. Bloom thanked the German Convention Bureau once again for their continued support and congratulated them on having the highest number yet of German members on their new stand – 216. The bureau’s sustainable construction also won this year’s IMEX/GMIC Green Exhibitor Award.