Joining forces: Global exhibition coalition f...
Joining forces

Global exhibition coalition formed

Photo: Gerd Altmann / Pixabay

As global economies look for opportunities to rebuild business in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, exhibition organisers and associations from around the world are joining together to form a coalition dedicated to bringing critical live event platforms back to market, with safety at the foundation of the collaborators' approach. This coalition, which is led by the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, UFI, and important industry associations such as SISO, as well as the world's leading exhibitions organisers Clarion Events, Comexposium, Diversified Communications, Emerald, Informa Markets, Reed Exhibitions (RX) and Tarsus, are joining forces as their customers are signalling a desire to return to live event experiences.

"Exhibitions and business events are the fastest of all fast tracks to drive economic recovery after the pandemic", says Kai Hattendorf, Managing Director & CEO – UFI. "Especially small and medium-sized enterprises rely on these marketplaces to drive their sales. As an industry, we have systems and processes in place to provide safe platforms for face-to-face trading."
„Events will help play a fundamental role in driving economic recovery across the globe.“
Russell Wilcox, CEO Clarion Events.
While this expansive global group is collaborating for the first time, many of the leading exhibitions organisers, typically competitors, have been finding meaningful ways to collaborate and combine resources for the benefit of the global communities they serve. Most notably, many of the industry's organisers and associations joined forces last year to create and support the All Secure Guidelines, a rigorous set of globally adopted and medically vetted health and safety measures designed to create a consistent and diligent approach to visitor health at all global trade shows in 2021 and beyond. Aligned to this, UFI developed and released a Global Framework for the successful reopening of trade shows, addressing advocacy bodies and institutions and backed by members of the coalition and the wider industry.

"Our platforms help build and grow global industries," says Charlie McCurdy, CEO – Informa Markets. "They serve an important role in relationship building, discovering innovation and revenue-driving for the communities they serve." Hugh Jones, CEO – Reed Exhibitions, says: "COVID-19 has thrown into sharp relief how much we value face-to-face interaction, and how important live events are in championing innovation and driving growth for our customers and communities."
„There is no more effective way to build trust and new relationships than by meeting face to face.“
Ted Wirth, President and CEO Diversified Communications
Douglas Emslie, CEO – Tarsus and Chair of SISO, said: "We hear first-hand from our customers how eager they are to get back to some sense of normalcy and how essential face-to-face events are to source products, negotiate and meet suppliers."

"Events will help play a fundamental role in driving economic recovery across the globe," says Russell Wilcox, CEO – Clarion Events. Renaud Hamaide, Chairman of Comexposium, adds: "I firmly believe that live events are critical to driving economic recovery. These interactions will truly revamp individual businesses and entire industries." Hervé Sedky, President and CEO – Emerald, says: "As an exhibition industry, we are united now more than ever by a common purpose: of stimulating economic growth, supporting post-COVID-19 recovery efforts, and safely reopening in-person events."

Ted Wirth, President and CEO – Diversified Communications, says: "The need for business continuity is a common theme among our audiences and, while we successfully provided alternative solutions for buyers and sellers to connect, there is no more effective way to build trust and new relationships than by meeting face to face."