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DIG­I­TAL­I­SA­TION will be the key to suc­cess for the busi­ness events in­dus­try ac­cord­ing to The Global As­so­ci­a­tion of the Ex­hib­tion In­dus­try (UFI) ceo Kai Hat­ten­dorf in his State of the In­dus­try ad­dress on Tue.

Hosted by the Ex­hi­bi­tion & Event As­so­ci­a­tion of Aus­trala­sia (EEAA) at the ICC Syd­ney, Hat­ten­dorf said dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion would re­place glob­al­i­sa­tion as the driv­ing force of the sec­tor.

“In the next 10 to 15 years, dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion will take over as the main growth driver – and we ex­pect that to im­pact our in­dus­try’s busi­ness mod­els.”

He added that dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion would not end the busi­ness events in­dus­try.

“Dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion has made our in­dus­try stronger for the bet­ter.”

Dur­ing his pre­sen­ta­tion, the UFI ceo pre­dicted that five trends would im­pact the busi­ness events in­dus­try in the next 12 to 18 months.

“Grow­ing po­lit­i­cal un­cer­tain­ties, the po­lar­i­sa­tion of global lead­ing shows, con­tin­ued dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion, a fo­cus on op­er­a­tional ex­cel­lence, and, in­creas­ingly, evolv­ing busi­ness mod­els,” he said.

Hat­ten­dorf said the Aus­tralian events sec­tor was pre­dicted to grow above aver­age in the Asi­aPa­cific in the com­ing years.

“With the ICC, Mel­bourne ex­pand­ing, this means Aus­tralia is geared to grow above aver­age com­pared to rest of the re­gion.”

The to­tal ex­hi­bi­tion space sold in Aus­tralia Hat­ten­dorf said, was grow­ing 5.5% year-on-year, which was higher than Asia.

He added that the busi­ness events sec­tor was a sleep­ing gi­ant that was grow­ing faster than the global econ­omy.

“Our in­dus­try is grow­ing at 3.54.0%, which is faster than the global econ­omy rate of 3.0-3.5%,” he said.

At­ten­dees at the ad­dress in­cluded BESyd­ney chair Bruce Baird, Mel­bourne Con­ven­tion Bureau’s Karen Bolinger and ICC Syd­ney ceo Ge­off Don­aghy.

MEAN­WHILE the EEAA signed a Me­moran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing (MoU) at the event with the UFI.

The Me­moran­dum will pave the way for greater knowl­edge­shar­ing, ed­u­ca­tion ex­change, re­search and the de­vel­op­ment of young tal­ent be­tween the two.

Pic­tured is UFI ceo Kai Hat­ten­dorf and EEAA chief exec Joyce DiMas­cio with mem­bers of the EEAA board sign­ing the MoU.

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