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newsUpper Street Events has played down concerns a new Christmas edition of its popular Gadget Show Live could cannibalise attendance in Birmingham, claiming consumer demand can sustain both. The organiser will launch a Christmas edition of its Gadget Show Live brand at Excel London from 30 November to 2 December. Events director Matt Hodgins told EN the organiser had been considering a second Gadget Show for the last couple of years based on satisfying demand that couldn't be quenched with one event. "Cannibalisation was always the greatest concern behind launching a second show, but the research we conducted last year indicated that 50 per cent of our Birmingham visitors would attend a second show in the winter and that fewer than 10 per cent would attend the Christmas event in preference to The NEC show," Hodgins explained. "With a large audience from the southern counties who watch the TV programme regularly but have not attended The NEC event, we also expect to attract visitors who will be first-time event goers. There is considerable appetite from existing exhibitors, particularly those with a retail offering, to do the show more than once a year so we expect about half our London exhibitors to have worked on the event before." The rest will be recruited from industries focused primarily around the festive period, Hodgins said. Like its sister event in Birmingham, the Christmas edition will centre around a 2,700-seat Super Theatre featuring an all-new Christmas show with the presenters of the TV programme. However, given its timing, Hodgins expected more focus on the goods high on visitors' Christmas lists including toys, games, phones, compact cameras, personal audio, tablets and other popular gadget gifts. The original Gadget Show Live meanwhile, fits with the international release schedule for many top brands and will retain a trade and press preview day, he said. Interactive features planned for the debut Excel exhibition include a gadget wheels test track, gaming stage, diamond music stage and Gadget gadget show christmas to debut at excel2,000 seats and offered an additional 15,000 visitor tickets to cope with consumer demand. Gadget Show Live returns to The NEC from 3 to 7 April 2013.anti-arms campaigner guilty of criminal act at dseiAnti-arms trade campaigner Chris Cole has been found guilty of criminal damage after spraying 'DSEI kills' and 'stop the arms trade' at the entrance to last year's trade show. Cole pleaded not guilty at Westminster Magistrates Court on 31 May, arguing he was acting to prevent allegedly unlawful activity taking place at the DSEI event. He was fined £500 and ordered to pay £745 in costs and compensation. Cole was previously sentenced to 30 days imprisonment for refusing to pay a £2,000 fine for a similar act of civil disobedience at DSEI 2009. Amnesty International arms control expert Oliver Sprague gave evidence on behalf of Cole, detailing alleged breeches of export control laws that had taken place at previous DSEI arms fairs as well as the most recent exhibition. A spokesperson for the London Campaign Against Arms Trade Jessie Normaschild also attended the hearing and criticised both the fine and the Government's participation in DSEI.The biennial DSEI event was organised by Clarion Events and took 6 from 13 to 16 September. It attracted 29,112 attendees, up 16 per cent on 2009. "Chris Cole's act of vandalism took place on TfL property some distance from the Excel centre and had no impact on DSEI which was a huge success," DSEI spokesman Duncan Reid said. "DSEI is a legitimate exhibition run in partnership with the UK Government and we work with them to ensure our exhibitors and visitors comply with the law."the exhibition industry is making a vital contribution to europe's growth agenda and we need to make sure this is more clearly understood. it makes sense the key industry groups should work together to present a single face and voice.- UFI president Arie Brienen comments on the global exhibition industry association's new alliance with the European Major Exhibition Centres Association. The pair aim to promote and raise awareness of the vital role of exhibitions within the European Union. The European Exhibition Industry Alliance plans to be fully operational by the end of 2012.Show studio, allowing visitors to be a presenter of the Channel 5 show in a mock-up studio. This year's Gadget Show Live at The NEC from 11 to 15 April expanded its Super Theatre by 7CloserStill Media's value soars to £25m with equity injectionExhibition organiser CloserStill Media has secured a significant injection of capital from UK private equity firm Phoenix Equity Partners (Phoenix) which values the business at about £25m.This is the sixth investment from Phoenix's £450m fund, which was raised in 2010. The new capital will support CloserStill's ambitious growth strategy, including international expansion and further UK-based development driven by acquisitions and new launches. The organiser was launched by Andy Center, Phil Nelson and Michael Westcott and currently has a portfolio of 10 major exhibitions in the UK principally in the healthcare and technology sectors. These include the London Vet Show, Pharmacy Show, Dentistry Show, Learning Technologies, nextgen and Cloud Expo Europe, which it purchased last year. The latest event was Clinical Pharmacy Congress (pictured), which debuted at Excel London in April and attracted 1,272 delegates. The organiser has also just announced its first international event, France Vet, in Paris next year. "Phoenix has an enviable pedigree and, with this backing we can now paint our pictures on even bigger canvasses; the adventure continues," said CloserStill CEO Andy Center. Kevin Keck, a partner at Phoenix, saw great opportunities for CloserStill to grow rapidly. "We have been focused on making an investment in the exhibition sector for some time and we are delighted to be investing alongside the outstanding CloserStill team," he added.According to Center, CloserStill has gone from a standing start to £10m in revenue in three years, and nearly £3m in profit. During this time, the company has acquired £3.5m of assets in revenue terms and undertaken £3m worth of launches. Center claimed CloserStill is currently in negotiations for several acquisitions.In BrIefHouston quits HiCHarrogate International Centre (HIC) director Angus Houston has quit his post after 18 months, citing a desire to seek fresh challenges. He joined the venue in 2011 following a stint as executive director of Ricoh Arena and will be replaced in the short-term by deputy director of HIC simon Kent, who joined the HIC in 2004. Houston's tenure has been marred with a series of economic challenges following record losses at the HIC, which triggered a range of job cuts and outsourcing of other functions. The venue is owned by Harrogate District Council, which has seen its workforce halved in recent years. The cuts came at the same time as the HIC embarked on a £13m expansion programme.AECC dEbts to bE ClEArEd by CounCilAberdeen City Council's new political administration is planning to pay off £26.2m in loans owed by the Aberdeen exhibition and Conference Centre (AeCC) to the local authority. Labour leader councillor Barney Crockett said ridding the venue of its historic debt was a display of the council's commitment to the economic future of the city and its events industry. "This would be a momentous decision which would allow the AeCC to plan more clearly for the future and go forward on a firmer financial footing as a major public exhibition space unencumbered by debt," he said. However, local media reports said the councillor didn't specify where the money would come from. vidEo gAtEwAy dEbutsTechnology supplier Videobuilder has launched a new overlay payment and freeview gateway feature to its existing video widget for event websites. The feature allows event organisers to overlay payment and freeview gateways to their filmed seminar video content on their websites. A credit-card payment gateway can be added to individual videos or entire event inventories and voucher codes can also be created. "Many organisers spend significant sums filming their seminars, and then simply give it way after," said Videobuilder CeO Richard Counsell. "why not reward attendees with exclusive access to filmed content and charge others who failed to show?"UK organisers break into South east AsiaSeveral UK organisers are ramping up Asian operations as fresh opportunities emerge in South East Asia and China. Quartz Business Media has launched the first South East Asian edition of Chemspec in Thailand next year. Chemspec Asia will be held at the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre from 19 to 21 September 2013 and is expected to attract 5,000 attendees. The trade show will focus on the fine and speciality chemicals industry and is being developed with The Federation of Thai Industries - Chemical Industry Club. The organiser attributed its choice of Thailand to its reputation as a regional hub among the international fine chemicals community, and demand from the Asian chemical industry for a regional event. Chemspec debuted in 1986 in the UK and has expanded into Europe, India, the US, Middle East and Latin America. "There is little doubt Asia is currently the world's economic success story and with manufacturing performance in the region having been robust in the face of the recent global financial crisis, future growth indicators are extremely positive," Quartz vice-president Steve Diprose said. During a roadshow held by the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau in London in May, Mack Brooks also detailed its first Fastener Fair in Thailand this September. Traditionally, Mack Brooks has focused on BRIC countries but ASEAN's growth economy offered new avenues for niche shows, MD David Tellett said. "We feel the timing is right for ASEAN, economically as well as for us as an international company." Clarion Events is also expanding into South East Asia and has five events to date. "We have started with smaller, specialist events we hope will grow into larger expos," MD Simon Kimble said. Across in China, UBM has confirmed the China edition of its Ecobuild event will return for a second edition in April 2013 after attracting more than 15,000 visitors and 127 exhibitors in Shanghai. The event took place at the SNIEC exhibition centre, with Expo Build on 9-12 April, which attracted 100,000 professionals. Ecobuild China's achievement follows the recent success of Ecobuild UK, which reported 57,000 visitors. "We want Ecobuild China to be the annual meeting place for everyone involved in creating and maintaining sustainable built environments throughout China," Ecobuild portfolio director James Blue said.