This Week’s IMEX America the Biggest Ever

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IMEXThe show floor stats coming from IMEX America, which just wrapped up three days at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, illustrate a meetings industry back on a healthy growth trajectory.

Spin to win! From left: Worth International’s (Prevue’s parent company) Regional Sales Manager Laura Lee, Prevue Editor Barbara Scofidio and Marketing Manager Nicole Narcisso

IMEX America’s organizers, IMEX Group, reported that nearly half of exhibitors increased their booth sizes, resulting in a 20 percent increase in exhibit space sold and a 9 percent increase in the number of stands (360), making this the largest in the show’s 12-year history. In total, there were 15,000 participants, 5,000 of which were buyers (4,000 hosted).

“The global business events industry never fails to surprise in its ability to recover quickly from a set-back,” said Carina Bauer, IMEX Group CEO.

Kool and the Gang lead singer Skip Martin played all of the band’s greatest hits during a private concert at SITE NITE.

Prevue was in the house, raffling off upscale prizes including Tumi luggage and a Citizen watch. Innovations on the show floor included The Inspiration Hub, with a Wellbeing Wheel, the Google Xi CoLaboratory, and the IMEX|EIC People and Planet Theatre. Responding to the industry’s call for more wellbeing opportunities at events, a new feature was the Resilience Room, a calming retreat from sensory overwhelm, created in partnership with the Neu Project and Marriott Bonvoy Events.

The show’s two annual fundraisers were a smash hit, with SITE NITE on Monday night featuring a private performance by Skip Martin, lead singer of Kool and the Gang, who also mingled with crowd afterwards. MPI Rendezvous, held on Wednesday night, was a sellout, with MPI announcing it had raised $410,000 for its Foundation from that event and three other IMEX fundraising initiatives.

Prevue’s Editorial Advisers Meeting attendees (top left): Nicky Baumohl, President & CEO, Evolutionary Events; Lisa Palumbo, Founder & Chief Event Strategist, Tampa Bay Social, LLC; Shontae Khaleel White, Senior Manager, Global Event Operations, ACAMS; Beau Ballin, Executive Director, Global Meetings and Conventions, Regeneron; Prevue Editor Barbara Scofidio; Josh Adams, Industry Relations Strategist, streamlinevents; Steffi Kordy, Owner, Cocoon Incentives; (bottom left) Gillian Heath, Event Marketing Manager, IMEX Group; Sherrille Mingo, BCD Travel | Corporate Meeting Planner
Onsite at VOLKSWAGEN Group of America, Inc.; Amy Quigley, Regional VP, Unbridled; Samantha Marie, Events Director / Business Development, OmniEra; and Lottie Elson, Head of Marketing Operations, IMEX

Prevue kicked off the week with its annual Editorial Advisers Meeting at Delano, where the group discussed their current challenges, shared common solutions, and helped to plan content and research projects for the coming year.

IMEX America 2024 will be held October 8-10 at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas.

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Barbara Scofidio is Editor of Prevue and heads up the Visionary Summits, our exclusive conference series targeting senior-level meeting and incentive planners. In her 30 years in the industry, she has become known for her passion around greening meetings, growing awareness of human trafficking and promoting CSR activities as part of business events. She is currently a member of SITE's Women IN Leadership committee and the media liaison for FICP's Education Committee. She was the first member of the media ever to be invited to sit on a committee by GBTA, where she spent three years on the Groups and Meetings Committee. She has also been an active member of SITE for 30 years, chairing its Crystal Awards committee and acting as a judge. Before joining Prevue in 2014, she served as Editor of Corporate Meetings & Incentives (MeetingsNet) for more than 20 years. She has a BA in Literature/Rhetoric from Binghamton University. Barbara is based outside Boston, in Groton, Mass.