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page 48 5EditorialPublishing Director Liz AgostiniManaging Editor Nadia Cameron Deputy Editor Antony Reeve-CrookSenior Journalist Domenic DonatantoniodigitalOnline Editor Sarah O'DonnellAdvertising Manager Jamie LininSubScriptionSCirculation Executive Tim Pardingtonproduction & dESign Production Manager Luke SpaldingDesigner Sarah GarlandProduction Assistant Julia Ball contact uSSubscriptions 020 8971 8268Editorial 020 8971 8292Sales 020 8971 8265 Production 020 8971 8272Published by Mash Media 4th Floor, Sterling House6-10 St George's Road London SW19 4DPTel: +44 (0)20 8971 82821 year's subscription cost is UK £95+VAT p/a Europe £112+VAT ROW £130+VAT.Views expressed are not necessarily those of the publishers. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the express written permission of the publishers.Printed by Pensord Press Ltd. uring a face-to-face interview in CloserStill Media's London offices last month, MD Andy Center and I got talking about what it takes to run successful exhibitions in an economically challenged, digitally savvy and ROI-led world. The question I asked Andy was whether he thought exhibitions had changed over the 25 years he has been in the industry. His response makes me wonder what it means to be an exhibition organiser today and how we communicate it. For Andy, an "exhibition" is merely the platform we use to serve communities and create commerce by introducing buyers to sellers while finding increasingly diverse ways for people to interact. Yes, he agreed, shows today don't look like those he ran 25 years ago, as many have a higher level of content and features. Technology and mobile delivery innovations are offering new ways to enhance how we serve and grow communities and create business opportunities. But the purpose of our industry hasn't changed at all from yesterday to today and is as important as ever. So long as we can prove it. Our Show Case in this month's issue on Internet World is a great example of how an exhibition brand has managed to remain relevant even as its exhibitor base and the technology market it serves changed beyond all recognition. What is different for organisers today, Andy said, is exhibitor and visitor perceptions of what we do, and how we go about asserting and demonstrating our worth. I don't think I need to remind anyone that visitors - both trade and consumer - have become more demanding in terms of sensory experiences and interactivity, and are time-poor and cash-strapped. Nor do I think organisers are missing the point of the shows they run. The real problem lies in our message.As Andy puts it, things have become harder for organisers because they've been 'found out': As an industry, we fail to provide customers with sufficient and tangible ROIs, data and intelligence, even as other media including print, TV, radio and online introduce metric after metric which demonstrate their influence. As a result, it's more difficult today than it ever was to convince new companies and individuals to support our business model. Our industry needs to become more sophisticated in displaying its effectiveness. Even as our model matures and the list of competing shows gets ever more global, many organisers fall back on the lowest common denominator. Why don't we all audit our shows? Better yet, conduct full brand reviews? Or if the visitor-based audit of old isn't the right tool, can't we devise something better? Why do we continue to shy away from having an industry-wide standard? To put it bluntly, why don't more organisers spend money to make money? Don't we want to prove our success as a marketing and branding medium?In Andy's opinion, calling yourself an exhibition organiser is like a publisher calling themselves a printer. I get what he means. On the one hand, my job at Exhibition News is to compile this magazine together each month. But what it's really about is sourcing valuable information our readers want. And this is because we're trying to grow our community.As an organiser, it's imperative to demonstrate the value of the environment you create, the sales you help generate and the community you build and support. Face-to-face is as valuable as ever and exhibitions remain a viable business model. So let's make sure more people know about it. An exhibition is merely the platform we use to serve communities and create commerceNADIA CAMERON MANAGING EDITORncameron@mashmedia.netTHE MEDIuM AND THE MESSAGEd

newsOcean Media Group has responded to claims its Event Production Show has been cancelled by confirming the show and affiliated products are up for sale. In a letter dated 1 May and sighted by EN, Ocean informed exhibitors of the show's cancellation and their right to a refund. "It is with great regret that Ocean Media Group has decided to cancel the event due to take place on 30 to 31 January 2013," the letter stated. "Any monies you have already paid to Ocean Media Group as a form of deposit to secure your stand at Event Production Show 2013 will be refunded to you in full." In a response to EN, Ocean MD David Moran confirmed it is not running a 2013 edition of Event Production Show but said the organiser is negotiating with several bidders to event production show for salethen, he has flagged expansion in the UK and internationally as key ambitions and hinted at forthcoming acquisitions in complementary market sectors. The organiser is focused on the social housing, building, bridal and fashion sectors. In recent months, Ocean has also offloaded its Negotiator and Built IT magazine titles. The future of the UK Venue Show, which debuted this year alongside the Event Production Show, has not been confirmed, but several believe it is unlikely to return. Ocean claimed this year's Event Production and UK Venue shows attracted 3,946 attendees (unaudited), compared to 3,612 last year. There were 250 exhibitors including 90 new companies.General manager of Church House Conference Centre in London, Robin Parker, was one of the inaugural UK Venue Show's exhibitors. "Since the UK Venue Show I have not heard a single word from the organiser, to either say thank you for exhibiting, to talk about next year or even to ask how the show went, so on that basis I am not the least bit surprised it is unlikely to be repeated," Parker said. "From an exhibitor point of view, the show was very poorly attended, and the feedback I have had is that the only people who visited were suppliers trying to sell to the venues. "We signed up as there seemed to be a reasonable logic in trying to build a show in this area following Confex's move to Excel. However, for whatever reason, it just didn't work." clarion drops Baby show for trade after two-year runClarion Events has cancelled its London-based Baby Show for Trade after two editions, citing a lack of sufficient exhibitor and visitor support. In a statement, the organiser said the Olympia-based show, due to be held in October, will be cancelled after extensive market research showed the event was not sustainable. Clarion also claimed growing industry focus on European trade shows in the autumn. Clarion launched the Baby Show for Trade in March 2010 off the back of its successful consumer Baby Show exhibition. The decision to drop the trade version comes two years after Clarion, the Baby Products Association (BPA) and the Harrogate Nursery Fair struck a deal to cancel a proposed October Harrogate show in favour of Clarion's London event. The Harrogate Nursery Fair (pictured) continues to run every March and is organised by the BPA's MD Robert Anslow. "We will continue to work with the nursery trade to deliver our market-leading events, The Baby Shows, evolving 6 current offering and bringing new initiatives to meet demand from both the trade and consumers," Clarion's portfolio director Nicole Muller said. "The BPA has enjoyed working with the Clarion team, which should be congratulated for producing an extremely professional and well-presented trade show for the nursery industry; and provided the platform for the BPA's Concept and Innovation Awards," Anslow added. "It is regretful the Baby Show for Trade is ceasing." they asked me to bear with them, that they were going to come up with an amicable resolution, but they weren't clear on what happened. they used the term 'postponed,' but to me, it was the same thing as cancelled.- Sam Spira, who represents UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture, responds to news of the postponement of the British Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Show Live in Birmingham in May to a potential October date. Participants are believed to be investigating a lawsuit against organiser Split Decision to recover money promised for being involved in the event. sell various combinations of the Event Production Show, Event Production Awards, Access All Areas magazine and The White Book supplier directory."Disposal of the events business is part of our process of selling anything in an area where we are not market dominant," he stated. Moran bought back Ocean Media in January with AAC Capital Partners under a private equity deal. Since