By Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia , 21 September, 2017

The Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia (EEAA) has strengthened ties with the international business event community, signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry (UFI) tonight.

The partnership comes as the global leaders from the exhibition and event industry – UFI CEO, Kai Hattendorf, and UFI Regional Manager for Asia/Pacific, Mark Cochrane – wrap up a three-day mission to Sydney designed to show the peak body’s commitment to supporting the Australasian business event industry.

EEAA Chief Executive, Joyce DiMascio, said the agreement would pave the way for greater knowledge-sharing, education exchange, research collaboration and the development of young talent between the two organisations.

“We are pleased to formalise a stronger partnership with UFI and deepen our engagement with the global business event industry. The exchange of the MOU today opens up the way for closer collaboration between our two organisations,” Ms DiMascio said.

“This agreement is an important commitment to work in partnership on key areas of industry development and opportunity, giving the Australasian business event community both a greater voice in global affairs and access to UFI’s global network.

“There is a strong alignment between our associations – we both share a commitment to supporting and developing the business opportunities of our members, promoting careers in our sector and advocating for the value of the sector to government and the broader business community – and I look forward to working more closely with UFI for the benefit of our respective organisations and the members we serve.”

UFI CEO, Kai Hattendorf, added that the new partnership would help to better connect the industry globally.

“It is UFI’s mission to connect and serve the exhibition industry globally. The collaboration with the EEAA will allow both our associations to do this more efficiently. We will collaborate on research, education, talent development, and peer to peer exchange – working to connect industry professionals from Australia with the industry in Asia and globally,” Mr Hattendorf said.

“More than 60 national and regional exhibition industry associations from all over the world are UFI members, creating a unique global network. Partnerships like the one we’re announcing today go deeper, based on shared projects and activities. At UFI, we look forward to bringing more of our insights and benefits to the industry in Australasia, and also on sharing best practices and initiatives from EEAA members with the UFI community.”

At the event, UFI formally presented the EEAA with its recent Global Exhibitions Day 2017 Industry Impact Award. The Association was recognised in the inaugural awards, established by the UFI and Exhibitions World, for its achievements in government advocacy and for having had ‘the most positive impact supporting exhibitions as an industry’.

Earlier in the evening, Mr Hattendorf delivered a ‘State of the Industry’ address to EEAA members and stakeholders, after which he was joined by a panel of industry leaders for an in-depth discussion on the major trends, opportunities and challenges affecting the global business event industry.

“The speed of change is picking up for the exhibitions and events industry – we will see more change in the next 10 years than we have seen in the past 30 years, even the blurring of ’traditional” borders between various types of events,” Mr Hattendorf said.

“Five main trends will impact our industry in the coming 12 to 18 months: Growing political uncertainties, the polarisation of global leading shows, continued digitisation, a focus on operational excellence, and, increasingly, evolving business models.

“In the next ten to fifteen years, digitisation will take over as the main growth driver – and we expect that to impact our industry’s business models.

“The exhibition industry has always been very resilient. What makes this industry special is its capacity to adapt to the ever changing needs of our core customer groups: buyers and sellers looking to exchange goods, ideas, and contacts.”

Mr Hattendorf and Mr Cochrane are visiting Sydney to connect with the Australasian business community. Over their three-day program, they will meet with industry and government leaders, visit some of Sydney’s key venues and hear about their development plans and engage with EEAA members and the wider business event community via EEAA-led events, including last night’s Young Stars and Leaders Table, and today’s Political Insiders lunch and ‘State of the Industry’ address.

“It has been our honour to host Kai Hattendorf and Mark Cochrane in Australia. Their visit represents a true commitment to our region and to supporting the growth of the Australasian business events industry,” Ms DiMascio said.

“Today we strengthen the relationship between our two great associations, laying a solid foundation for the future of our industry, both locally and globally.”

Source: EEAA