Q: What are the kinds of changes happening to the buyer program?
A: We are trying to make a difference this year for both the buyers and exhibitors, from my own experience I know that it’s all about having the time to make those vital connections that makes AIME so valuable.
Following the 2017 edition of AIME, we spoke with exhibitors and buyers to find out what worked, what didn’t and what they really need to gain more business out of AIME. At the end of the day that is what AIME is all about, creating strong business opportunities and connections in the events industry.
The biggest change to the Hosted Byer Program is the application process, we are taking a targeted approach to finding the right buyers for the exhibitors, by being invitation only. We are utilising the extensive ibtm Global Events portfolio to bring a new freshness to the program; new faces, new connections and new business opportunities.
We are also excited about initiating a Trade Buyer Program that allows trade to make appointments with exhibitors, without needing to be a part of the extended Hosted Buyer Program. Having worked with exhibitors who attended AIME for many years, this is a massive addition that both buyers and exhibitors will find beneficial – the flexibility that we are trying to offer trade buyers is unprecedented at AIME.
Q: What other changes are we likely to see this year?
A: We have reinvigorated the design of the show floor with a welcome feature area and new zone for ‘AIME First Timers’ and a general repositioning to give the show an overall better flow.
We are also introducing a few other things like extended opening hours, new sponsorship opportunities for exhibitors, and changes to the AIME Knowledge Program. There will be something for everyone at AIME 2018.
Q: From your experience why do people attend AIME?
A: AIME really is a meeting point for the Asia-Pacific region to connect and do business. Each year we welcome thousands of people and hundreds of exhibitors to Melbourne. I know the value of networking, meeting new people and staying up-to-date on the latest trends, technologies, venues and knowledge that AIME offers, it’s why a show like this appeals to everyone.
This year we can already see returning leading national and international exhibitors, including Japan National Tourism Organization, Hawaii Tourism Oceania, Tourism New Zealand, ICC Sydney, P&O Cruises, TFE Hotels, and Stamford Hotels and Resorts, with lots more still to come.
AIME is where inspiration begins and we are excited to have a really successful 2018. I hope to see you there!