"Embrace the content, the contacts and the community of the EEAA."

EEAA 2016 Conference

29-30 November 2016

Conference Centre, Cockle Bay Room, International Convention Centre Sydney


The Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia (EEAA) was pleased to accept an invitation by the International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney) to hold the EEAA 2016 Conference and Awards for Excellence as an official test event on 29 and 30 November 2016.

This was a great opportunity for the industry to experience the venue and for us to help test the new facility under event conditions.

In his opening address at the EEAA Conference, President Spiro Anemogiannis, commented on the strong position of the Association and the plans for 2017.

“2016 has been a good year for the EEAA. We have delivered our core work and also explored some opportunities to widen the remit of the EEAA. We have an active and engaged membership and we hope to continue to grow this membership to ensure we reflect the changes that are occurring in this industry.” He said.

“This year, we have continued to attract new members and today I am pleased to announce that Airbnb is joining EEAA as our newest Platinum Partner. We also welcome our most recent new members – The Event Crew, Unimet Security and Entegy. Tourism Australia also partnered with EEAA to become a Platinum Partner of the Young Stars Program.

“Our challenge is to further grow this Association and make it the peak body for the sector by expanding our footprint into the wider events space. One thing we should not overlook is that the “EE” in the EEAA stand for exhibitions and events.

“We are very strong in the former and need to embrace more of the other major events players. With other Associations at a crossroad, now is the time for us to take the lead. It is no secret that since becoming President, I, with the Board’s support have held discussions with some of the other bodies, namely Meetings & Events Australia and the PCO Association.

“These discussions will continue but the EEAA Board and I believe that our financial position and clear strategy for the whole sector will allow us to become the main player regardless of any outcomes of these talks. So watch this space,” he said.

The EEAA 2016 Conference program included discussions on global industry mergers and acquisitions, an overview of the economic environment and hot topics including marketing, data, digital trends and case studies on trade and consumer shows from Organiser and Association perspectives.

Attendees have praised the high-level of content at this year’s EEAA Conference, stating that access to global data and trends combined with local industry specific content was invaluable. This year’s conference was one of EEAA’s best attended. International speaker Steve Monnington set the tone for a stimulating day of learning and knowledge sharing.

The line-up of outstanding speakers and experts contributed their knowledge and ideas for the whole industry to benefit from and grow.

We curated a strong program with top speakers from Australia and overseas. These included:
  • Steve Monnington, Managing Director, Mayfield Media Strategies
  • Paul Bloxham, Chief Economist, HSBC
  • Ian Macfarlane, Managing Consultant, Strategetic Consulting
  • Richard Flanagan, Head of Business Marketing, Google


And our own Members were on stage too – sharing their knowledge about expo trends. We heard about marketing, selling, trends and the effects of disruption on trade and consumer shows with Sally DeSwart, Group Exhibition Director, Reed Exhibitions Australia and Rebekah Murphy, Event Marketing Director, Diversified Communications Australia.

Leading Association CEOs discussed developments in their industry sectors and the impact on their trade and consumer shows. Howard Glenn, Chief Executive Officer, Boating Industry Association, Lyndel Gray, Chief Executive Officer, Caravan and Camping Industry Association NSW and Troy Williams, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Dental Industry Association shared their perspectives with us.

And we partnered with the College of Event Management for two special sales training workshops pitched at our younger members.


  • EEAA held a training presentation on the Association’s new website. Members learned about the changes, new benefits and what they could do to maximise their presence on the EEAA site.
  • EEAA arranged a site tour of the new venue giving Members a look at the Convention Centre, Exhibition Centre, Loading Dock, Event Deck and ICC Sydney Theatre.

Content highlights

Steve Monnington, founder of Mayfield Media Strategies, kicked off the 2016 Conference keynote address, followed by Paul Bloxham, Chief Economist for HSBC in Australia and New Zealand.

Christian Bartens, Founder & CEO of Datalicious shared a basic toolkit of apps that you can immediately put into practice to capture data and use it to enhance your business strategy.

Ian Macfarlane, Managing Consultant, Strategetic Consulting challenged how we measure marketing success and Google’s Head of Business Marketing,Richard Flanagan identified useful online tools to help Members maintain their digital presence.

A panel of leading organisers – including Sally DeSwart from Reed Exhibitions Australia, Rebekah Murphy from Diversified Communications Australia and Sarah Pohlman from Fairfax Media, whose portfolio includes some of the country’s biggest events which have boosted Fairfax’s revenue – spoke about trends in events and exhibitions, the relevance of the traditional exhibition model and the new need to act as the broker of business relationships.

The topic of what’s driving the success of Associations was addressed by Rodney Cox, International Gas Union; Howard Glenn, Boating Industry Association;Lyndel Gray, Caravan and Camping Industry Association NSW; and Troy Williams, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Dental Industry Association

The program also included a workshop with James Moranfrom Apprenticeship Support Australia, who addressed the services available to assist with the recruitment of apprentices, trainees and interns.

And for EEAA’s younger members, a professional development session, presented by the College of Event Management, explored strategies and techniques on how to make the sale and close the deal.

Watch the highlights video