Four leading venues discussed how smaller exhibitions need to be looked after as they could be the next “BETT or Book Fair” at a panel at International Confex.
Anna Golden from EC&O Venues, owner of Earls Court and Olympia London, Richard Mann from The NEC, Angela Perkins from Ricoh Arena and Andy Orr from EventCity, discussed the future of exhibition venues this afternoon (13 March).
With Earls Court now earmarked for closure, Golden said that the firm is looking to transfer as many shows as possible to Olympia London.
“We have been running here for 127 years and hope to run for another 100 years,” she said.
She added that Olympia is now a “hothouse” for developing shows as “you never know what will be the next big show like Bett or Book Fair.”
Golden also revealed that Earls Court will not be accepting new bookings into 2015 but will honour existing contracts.
Perkins said that the loss of Coventry City Football Club has had a marginal impact on the venue.
“Football only accounted for seven per cent of our revenue,” she said, adding that the venue can focus a lot more on exhibitions, particularly at the weekend. It also held a showcase event recently for 74 organisers.
A notable show win at Ricoh has been SPATEX, which ran on 2-4 February at the Midlands venue.
By Domenic Donatantonio.
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