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GUTSY ENTERPRISEtrade shows, we don't have a future. You won't be able to tap into a booming market with gloom, you need people who love their job.In 2016, Jaarbeurs Holding celebrates its centenary. What began as an annual fair - the literal translation of Jaarbeurs - in the centre of the Netherlands has grown into a business with several subsidiaries. These include an exhibition organiser with a portfolio of 60 trade shows and exhibitions; the operator of a 240,000sqm venue, and a catering company and event organiser that owns various party caterers in the Netherlands. Through its subsidiary VNU Exhibitions Europe, Jaarbeurs also owns businesses in Shanghai [VNU Exhibitions Asia] and Bangkok [VNU Exhibitions Asia Pacifi c].What are your plans for international expansion?Trade shows follow the same ebb and fl ow movement as the economy. We defi nitely see the ups and downs. That is one reason why we decided to spread our portfolio over various sectors. This evens out peaks in the economic cycle. We also decided to expand geographically. From the Netherlands, we organise trade shows in Russia and Mexico and license a trade show in Turkey. We own two independent businesses in Shanghai, with 18 trade show titles, and Bangkok, with 17 titles. Asia offers us great opportunities. That is why we are now active in China, Thailand, India, Indonesia and Vietnam. We want to grab every opportunity as soon as it arises.Which brings me back to the people factor. You can only achieve this if your employees are willing to do everything for a project. If they are given space and opportunities to follow their own plans, they can be true entrepreneurs. We give people the space they need to realise their plans. Jaarbeurs is accountable for success and failure. If a plan fails, AS HIS COMPANY APPROACHES ITS 100TH BIRTHDAY, JAARBEURS HOLDING CEO AND UFI PRESIDENT ARIE BRIENEN TELLS EW WHY EVERYONE SHOULD BE REWARDED FOR DEMONSTRATING COURAGE - EVEN IF THEY FAILrie Brienen's seventh fl oor offi ce offers a great view of the Jaarbeurs Exhibition and Convention Centre in Utrecht, the Netherlands. The UFI president walks to the window to point towards the halls: "You think you see square metres, but that's not true. If you take away the roof, you mostly see people meeting up, having something to offer each other, getting to know each other for the fi rst time, watching relationships blossoming. That is still the essence of trade shows, events and exhibitions. Enabling these meetings and, eventually, yielding results."Brienen is CEO of Jaarbeurs Holding, headquartered in Utrecht, and last year became the president of UFI, the global association of the exhibition industry. As you might expect, this means he travels a lot. The week before EW caught up with him, he had been at one of Jaarbeurs' overseas ventures, VNU Exhibitions Asia, in Shanghai. "It's unbelievable what you see there, how markets are developing. People need transparent markets. They need events that offer insight into the markets, where future relationships can be forged. China is a booming economy and booming business for the exhibitions sector. The prerequisite is that you play it smart."But what constitutes smart for today's organiser? EW fi nds out from the man at the top of the largest exhibition organiser in the Benelux area.Explain your management style.It's important to lead a business where people are dedicated and passionate about what they're doing. Fun, enjoyment, loving your job and inspiration are essential requirements for good annual results. If people are successful, this makes work more fun. It's a shame there's no way to express the fun factor in an annual report. Without motivated colleagues, who go to work happy every day, we don't have THE BIG INTERVIEWIssue 2 | 2012 www.30exhibition-world.net