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Reed’s ibtm line-up aims for growth under Prince

New boss Kerry Prince intends to win friends and influence people

Pictured: Kerry Prince

The new boss of the Reed Events Portfolio has thrown down a gauntlet to the competition – she intends to boss the market in event industry trade shows.

Kerry Prince has been brought in to restore market share and she intends to do it by focusing on delivering customer satisfaction.

Some might say it has been a long time coming for Reed. But Ms Prince – portfolio director of IBTM Global Events - believes fervently that delivering shareholder value and customer care need not be mutually exclusive.  A major customer research project is now coming to an end and the results will drive her strategy for change.

Two months after taking the role, she says: “We want to be the dominant player and have the largest market share. I’ve been in the job less than 90 days but I have attended ibtm World, ibtm Arabia and now AIME here in Melbourne so I am getting a feel for our products. Now I need a broad customer view of what we what doing right and wrong so I can get everything heading north again.”

“I am very customer-focused and I need to find out why we have lost customers and find out how we can get those people pack again and win over new customers.”

Reed spread themselves very thinly with a range of events in Africa, China, the Americas, Europe and previously in India. The Asia Pacific Incentives & Meetings Expo (AIME) taking place in Melbourne  this week – the 25th - will be the penultimate under Reed management as the company will not tender for the management contract again.

Under Prince’s watch, we can expect a focus back on the ‘mother ship’ in Barcelona. It’s no secret that the Reed portfolio of events has been in decline in recent years while Imex has stolen a march on them in the USA and grown its market share with the Frankfurt show but she says: “I have been with Reed for five years and I have done this in other sectors. I do understand the perception externally and internally that Reed puts shareholders first but Reed is a changing entity and you can look after both shareholder and customers alike. The research work will enable us to go back to the basics of providing customer needs. We don’t have to be like Imex to do that (i.e. be a privately-owned company) but we do have to deliver the same level of customer care.”

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