In complete contrast to 2018, with glorious sun filling the exhibition halls at Olympia, Mash Media welcomed the largest gathering of UK event organisers (26-27 February), across three stand out shows: International Confex, Event Production Show (EPS) & The PA Show.

International Confex welcomed just shy of 8,000 unique visitors. The Event Production Show offered inspiration to more than 6,000 delegates and The PA Show delivered an incredible training programme to more than 4,000 support professionals.

Liz Agostini, event director, International Confex, was thrilled with the overall results and feedback from customers “Within five minutes of doors opening, meaningful conversations were taking place and deals were being instigated. The team at Mash Media were determined to deliver for our customers and put on a show that our industry could again be proud of.

The feedback we have received has been overwhelmingly positive and has seen the highest level of rebooks we have experienced since we purchased the show in 2013. This puts us in a fantastic position as we start the exciting planning phase to take our events to ExCeL London in 2020”.

Day one highlights from International Confex included former Pop Idol winner and actor Will Young, speaking about the challenges of coming out publicly, and the how the music industry has changed to accommodate different forms of gender and sexuality in the last 18 years.

A quartet of leading figures from the exhibition industry joined EN editor Nicola Macdonald for a panel titled “The acquisition checklist” later on day one. The group discussed past, present and future trends in acquisitions to a packed out crowd at the EN pavilion.

Silverstream provided live streaming coverage of the event across all the Mash Media websites, and huge broadcasting screens in the centre of the show floor kept a buzzing atmosphere going throughout the two days.

Day one ended with social sessions at each of the Mash magazine pavilions, leading into an exhibitor drinks on the Pergola rooftop bar. This provided attendees with a chance to meet, network and make the connections which will drive their businesses forward throughout 2019.

Day two kicked off with a highlight on EPS’ main stage, where music industry stalwart Harvey Goldsmith divulged some tales from a legendary career which has seen him work with Queen, The Rolling Stones and David Bowie.

He told us the story of how he organised Live Aid alongside Bob Geldof, discussed the value of remaining independent, and looked to the future with some thoughts about RFID technology at festivals and gigs.

Politician and journalist Alastair Campbell took to the main stage of Confex shortly after, delivering a ‘state of the nation’ update on Brexit, Donald Trump, and more. He discussed the changing nature of media, and the importance of being politically active: “if you leave politics to someone else, it might not get done the way you want.”

Panel discussions about women in events and the future of our industry closed out day two, touching upon some key social issues the events industry is facing.

International Confex, the Event Production Show and PA Show all proved a resounding success this year, providing industry experts and newcomers alike with all the ground-breaking ideas and unique exhibitors needed to deliver incredible events, and push the industry forward.

Julian Agostini, managing director, Mash Media, commented: “This was a really positive week for Mash Media which reconfirmed our passion and desire to deliver for our customers and the communities our exhibitions, events and publications serve. These are exciting times for us with opportunities to build our existing brands and to explore new ideas as we expand our team and develop our capabilities”.

International Confex, The Event Production Show and The PA Show will take place on Tuesday 25 & Wednesday 26 February 2020 at ExCeL London.