James Rees from ExCeL London, says: “We’ve met clients who we’ve previously hosted, such as VidCon, who are returning to us to discuss bringing their event back to our venue in 2024 and 2025. There’s been a huge shift of staff in the industry, so the show is a chance for us to meet our old contacts in their new roles and build relationships with new people.”
Visit Scotland’s Richard Knight, adds: “It’s all about filling that pipeline for 2023/2024 and planners are scouting many new venues and hotels. We are definitely taking inquiries and normally we convert a good proportion of these into business.”
This year’s IMEX America is marked by a particularly strong turnout from North American exhibitors. Amy Brown from Fort Worth Convention Bureau explains: “We’ve invested in the show – we have our own booth for the first time – but it’s been worth it and our partners are pleased. Yesterday, one of our hotel partners closed a deal at the show for a medical event.”
“We’ve spoken to a wide range of global planners and today I arranged a city tour for a planner from Venezuela to scout locations for a financial event in 2024,” said Prince Williams from Marriott’s W Nashville.
Sustainability is driving business
Sustainability is continuing its rise as a key driver of business conversations and Vancouver’s impressive track record played a part in securing substantial new leads. Lacy Garvey from Destination Vancouver explains: “We’ve received a number of city-wide leads at IMEX which for us is groups larger than 1,000 using the convention centre and at least three large hotels. One of the leads is from a very large tech company that is very impressed with our sustainability practices – in fact, our focus on sustainability was one of the key deciding factors. They gave us feedback that we did a really good job of showing them that we don’t just say it – we actually live it.”
The show is fuelling fresh ideas as an attendee, Li Hayes of Go Leeward explains: “What I love about this event is that it’s fresh. There are things here that I’ve never seen before. Things I’ve done that I’ve never done before. I can’t wait to see what you do next time.”
IMEX America continues until October 13 at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas. Find out more about the event here.