At a press conference in Munich on Friday, Mike Blackman, managing director of Integrated Systems Events, outlined the organisation’s plans for ISE 2016.
Four months before the show opens, the exhibition space has sold out, said Blackman – “the earliest we’ve ever been here”. The show will occupy the whole of the RAI – namely halls 1-12, the Diamond Lounge and the new Amtrium building, the latter to be entirely occupied by Samsung Electronics. In total, 43,000sqm of space have been sold – 15% more than the 2015 event.
“I think this justifies why we’ve extended the show to a four-day event,” asserted Blackman (who was appropriately attired for a visit later that day to the Oktoberfest). “You need more time to get around ISE. Three days weren’t enough for the previous show – now it’s even bigger, you need more days to get around it.”
Asked about the reaction from exhibitors to the announcement of the extra day, he said: “As far as I know we didn't have a single negative reaction to the extension. We had some people saying, ‘We’re not sure’, [while] the majority of companies said they welcomed it – because they had been asking for a very long time.”
He added that because “the additional costs that these companies incur are actually the smallest part of their budget” – compared with fixed costs of exhibiting such as stand construction, logistics and travel – the extra day would give 33% more value “for something like 6% more cost”.
Future growth in exhibition space is also being planned for, he added: “The RAI is building even more space and in 2017 we’ll have another hall on board, and we anticipate – looking that the trend we have – that we’ll have a sell-out show again.”
One of the subject focuses for ISE 2016 will be AV-IT convergence. With the show becoming increasingly relevant for IT professionals working in the AV space, ISE will be partnering with IT media brands and promoting itself to IT professionals.
Another specific focus will be on hotel and hospitality technology. As a part of this, ISE 2016 will host the Total Hospitality Technology Forum, covering technical innovation and its application within the hostel and hospitality industries.
A fourth Show Floor Theatre will be added, presenting Audio Solutions – workflow and case study presentations from end users and exhibitors in the pro audio industry.
Blackman expressed the hope that some ISE 2016 visitors will stay on after the event to spend the weekend in Amsterdam. The Closing Keynote – details to be announced – will be a highlight of the final day of the show, Friday 12 February.
With ISE now partnering with invidis consulting over the well-established Digital Signage Summit series of events, ISE 2016 will not host a full digital signage conference: instead, Digital Singage briefings will be on offer.
Finally, Blackman announced a link-up with Education for Children in Need, an international education programme, and introduced a guest speaker – UNESCO Special Ambassador Dr Ute-Henriette Ohoven. Integrated Systems Events will pay for consultancy, equipment and installation for a new E-Start Up Academy in Chisinau, Moldova – which will be a base for programmes covering the web, IT, economics, marketing and business English. The five-week course will educate 400 people a year (50% of them women) in launching sustainable micro, small or medium-sized businesses.