Following what has been a very unusual year for ISE, Installation spoke with Bret Rohloff, senior strategic alliance manager, EMEA & UK, ScreenBeam (BR) to gauge his thoughts on the success of Barcelona, London and ISE Digital.
If you visited either event, how was it overall for you – both in terms of it being worthwhile (or not), and also in terms of the Covid safety measures? Would you attend a small regional event again in the future – either if it was forced by Covid or if ISE rolled them out as an add-on to the main annual show?
“I and one of my fellow colleagues attended the London event which under the current environment and restriction, was well organised and provided a safe atmosphere.
The best part was meeting our industry partners, other vendors and resellers as we walked the venue, giving us the ability to discuss face-to-face the latest technology, projects and market overall.
We would attend again if the show was slightly larger and potentially had larger space to network with partners. However, the feeling from exhibitors that we spoke with was that there weren’t enough potential customers in attendance as they were hoping. It may have been more effective just to stick to online this year and have a big kick off next year.”
What about the spread of exhibitors: Okay, given the circumstances?
BR “Given the circumstances, it was acceptable.”
How were the Main Stage talks/speeches – those that you saw?
BR “Our company selected to participate only in ISE digital event which we felt was a complete event that provided a significant amount of content, networking opportunities and coverage on new solutions.
I think ISE Digital should absolutely continue. It’s a great way to capture those who couldn’t necessarily attend in person.”
How has ISE 2021 influenced your feelings about the event as a whole? Has it made you more determined to have a great 2022, or has it dampened your enthusiasm? Do you have any suggestions for ISE for 2022 based on what you saw this year?
BR “Overall, our team had a positive vibe and are definitely looking forward to being back on the show floor for 2022 edition. The new venue along with a new city to explore, will be a great asset. I expect a lot of visitors on next year edition. I am very much looking forward to getting back to the actual event as it is intended.”
Finally, it has been a very difficult time for everyone, not least ISE: horrible decisions to have to make. How do you think the organisation fared? Could they and should they have done things differently, and if so what?
BR “We all at ScreenBeam give major kudos to the ISE team as we think they navigated this unpresented situation as well as they could and much better that I would have excepted. These decisions had to have been really hard to make, even the European and UK governments did not know either how to handle things. Creating the regional events was an excellent compromise along with the digital presence to making ISE work this year.”