Organisers of EMIF, the European Meetings Industry Fair, have announced a ‘major shift in focus’ for the annual spring event, which will see hosted buyers put centre stage.
The Artexis Group said they wanted EMIF to be more than ‘just a two-day exhibition’, with greater emphasis on networking and more pre- and post-event fam trips.
There are also plans to extend the educational content of the show. But putting serious buyers in front of suppliers is the main objective for exhibition director Cordula Riedel.
She said: “The new exhibition will be a strongly hosted buyer led show. No fewer than 400 international hosted buyers from the corporate and association sectors will be present at this marketplace and meetings place."
EMIF strategic adviser Paul Kennedy added: “Different evening events will set the stage for more business, as will fam trips to exhibiting destinations. The pre-scheduled appointment system will also create more opportunities for our exhibitors to meet with corporate and association buyers.”
Jan Wittouck, executive officer Flanders-Brussels Convention Bureau - Belgium: “New people, a new concept, a new strategy, in short a 360-degree makeover. For us a guarantee for an abundance of new ideas. The Flanders-Brussels CVB gives its full support to the team.”
EMIF, which is held at Tour & Taxis, in Brussels, was taken over by Artexis Exhibitions in December last year and saw its hosted buyer and communications budget rise by 50 per cent as a result.
Artexis, which has a turnover of €84m has a track record of hosting large events, like the Belgium Boat Show, and is also a venue operator. The group employs 360 people in 16 countries.
Next year’s EMIF takes place 13-14 March.
PIC: Cordula Riedel