The industry re-unites at IBTM World Barcelona 2021
IBTM World Barcelona, the first face-to-face event in the IBTM portfolio in two years, has been hailed a huge success by organisers, closing today with over 30,000 pre-scheduled one-to-one business meetings having taken place, and more than 7,000 attendees joining for quality one-to-one business meetings, networking and education in Barcelona.
The meetings satisfaction score reached 4.7 out of 5 during the three-day event.
Over 1,200 exhibiting companies from 70 countries around the world attended the exhibition. Over 1,400 Hosted Buyers were present from 72 countries, and almost half were completely new to the IBTM portfolio, representing more opportunities for exhibitors to do business with new contacts.
This year for the first time the Association Programme was created with the support of the four main global organisations for association professionals: European Society of Association Executives (ESAE), American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), African Society of Association Executives (AfSAE), and Asia-Pacific Federation of Association Organizations (APFAO), as well as the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). The programme followed three core themes: inspire, exchange and solve, designed to spark fresh ideas, encourage peer to peer learning and sharing of best practice, and deliver tangible solutions to real issues facing the associations and events sector.
In addition, IBTM’s Elite Corporate Programme explored key insights specifically focused on the needs of corporate Hosted Buyers. Themes include: the future of the meetings experience, re-starting events and evaluating their success, and peer-to-peer learning and insights. This tailored programme of sessions was supported by American Express Meetings & Events.
Under the theme of ‘New Business, New Tech, New World’ there was a schedule of inspirational educational sessions around four topical themes: Trends and technology; gamification and engagement; the future of event planning; and career and personal development, delivered by expert speakers from the United Nations Climate Change, LinkedIn, CrowdComms, VisitScotland, BBC Creative and more.
The IBTM World Industry Trends Report, one of the industry's most comprehensive and far reaching studies on the future of meetings and events was presented by Alistair Turner on the first day of the show and touched on key trends affecting the industry, from the micro to the macro, looking at the differences in global regions, and investigating the role of vertical markets. The report can be downloaded by clicking here.
Commenting on the close of the event, David Thompson, IBTM World Event Director, said: “For me personally, this has been an incredibly rewarding three days and it has been amazing to see people reconnect after so long apart. For many, this may have been the first event they’ve attended in two years, and it’s fantastic that we were able to play our part in bringing the industry together again.
“The whole team has worked exceptionally hard to make this event a success in quite challenging circumstances and I’m so proud of what we have achieved as a team. Stepping away from our screens and enjoying some face-to-face interaction, inspirational education sessions and one-to-one business meetings has been wonderful.”