Time to be resourceful:
Well that accelerated quickly. Following some weeks of
trying to keep events alive as coronavirus swept across
our world, and then seeing our associations rallying our
eventprof troops to ensure our governments realise our
industry’s value (in all its forms), at time of writing we
find ourselves in a critical phase, with many of us working
from home as our industry, among most others, is locked
As our brave doctors and nurses battle the coronavirus
on the front line, some of our esteemed venues are also
pitching into the fight, with IFEMA Madrid joining a
growing list that includes ExCeL London, Messe Wien,
Javits Center, Karachi Expo, Tehran’s IIEC, and many
others, in transforming into temporary hospitals to ease
pressure on existing health services.
It is a time to remember we are not alone. As ICCA
President James Rees put it nicely:’ Stand togther while we
Ravinder Sethi and the team at IELA have also
highlighted a similar theme, with their ‘Together Strong’
slogan. Let’s flex those muscles exhibition people (with the
gyms closed in many places we need to keep fit for sure).
I for one am finding some new ‘event tech muscles’ to
try out, being a convert to video conferencing 2020 and the
latest webinar tech (and do read Stuart Wood’s article on
pages 24-25 for some ideas to keep your events out in the
ether at least, while they may be physically suspended).
We can surely also learn much from each other and
what is out there on the market to ease our situation until
the virus subsides. It is a time for education and ideas.
While virtual communications may benefit more the
conference and meetings side of our broader industry,
exhibition organisers, too, can use it to stay close to their
markets, albeit the idea of direct replacements online does
seem challenging to say the least.
I would urge you to tap into all the resources of your
local industry associations and, first and foremost UFI, and
do read Kai Hattendorf’s wise words on p.10.
Now could also be time for taking damage limitation
measures that may just save your business; and a time for
sharing experiences. A problem shared, and all that…
Here at Mash Media we have opened a new online
Forum for problem-sharing and discussing information
and opinions. Do join in. Details on page 20.
In our global exhibition community we may all be at
different stages of coping with the Covid-19 threat but that
means we can certainly learn from and help each other.
Most importantly, stay safe and get ready to restart
strongly when the time comes.
Twitter: @ExhibitionWorld @paulcolston
Publishing Director: Simon Farnfield; Managing Editor: Paul Colston; Global Account Director: Iain Stirling; Global Account Manager: Jon Howell;
News Reporter: Stuart Wood; Graphic Designer: Kateryna Smirnova; Production Manager: Elizabeth Nixon.
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Issue 2 2020