Westrade’s Managing Director, Paul Harwood, explains why he’s confident that 2021 will see the return of the company’s world leading exhibitions in the UK, UAE and Malaysia.
Whilst many of the COVID-19 statistics are still extremely worrying, recent vaccination developments mean that for the first time in many months, I am allowing myself to feel cautiously optimistic. My optimism was bolstered by a recent BBC news article which highlighted further good news for those keen to see the return of live trenchless events: Two of our host countries (UK & UAE), were listed in the top three countries in the world in terms of percentage of population vaccinated.
The Global Events Industry
Before I take a look at what our exhibitor and exhibitors have to look forward to this year, I wanted to talk a bit more generally about the importance of live events.
A recent report by Explori on behalf of The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry surveyed 9,000 trade show visitors and exhibitors from over 30 countries. Its key finding reinforced the vital role live events have to play in the generation of new business opportunities and networking. In fact, nearly half the companies surveyed said that the absence of live events had a negative impact on their ability to generate business. There was also no evidence of any fundamental shift away from live events. The social aspects of events – something we have always work hard to foster – remains a critical draw for both visitors and exhibitors. There was also a great emphasis on quality with exhibitors recognising the importance of quality over quantity.
First to market
Exhibitors and delegates attending our three shows this year have even more reason to be optimistic. Continued monitoring of the global pandemic coupled with detailed planning means that our events are now set to be the first, and in many cases the only, event of their type anywhere in the world during 2021. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our sponsors and exhibitors for their patience and support – we look forward to rewarding you with some outstanding events.
Westrade’s 2021 Live Events Portfolio
No-Dig Live 2021 – 15 to 17 June 2021
East of England Arena and Events Centre, Peterborough
It feels like a long time since we were last all together in the UK and I cannot help but feel excited about returning to the East of England Arena for our flagship European event, No-Dig Live.
Those attending can expect our largest ever exhibition space, much of which is outdoors. Alongside the European and International big hitters, we also look forward to welcoming plenty of new and innovative companies who will be exhibiting for the first time.
Trenchless Middle East 2021 – 31 May to 1 June 2021
Jumeirah Beach Conference and Exhibition Centre, Dubai
For many in the trenchless sector, Dubai feels like a second home (if it is not their home already). The UAE’s booming economy and unparalleled rate of development continues to drive some of the highest levels of infrastructure investment seen anywhere in the world.
Trenchless Middle East is the region’s only conference and exhibition focusing entirely on the latest equipment and techniques used in Trenchless Technology (NDRC), including underground infrastructure and pipelining.
Supported by The International Society for Trenchless Technology (ISTT) and The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), Trenchless Middle East will be visited by an audience drawn from United Arab Emirates, the GCC Countries, Middle East and North Africa (MENA) regions.
Trenchless Asia 2021 – 16 to 17 November 2021
Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Malaysia
Kuala Lumper is rapidly becoming the shining star in our glittering events portfolio. Unprecedented levels of demand for exhibition space are coupled with a high-quality audience drawn from across South East Asia.
With No-Dig Panama moving to 2023, we felt this was the perfect opportunity to use this gap in the industry calendar and host Trenchless Asia with full support from government ministers, local societies, suppliers and exhibitors.
Trenchless Asia will host the ISTT International No-Dig, providing a multi-track conference programme featuring a mix of technical sessions and a platform for the international community to come together to meet, exchange ideas and network with like-minded people.
Additionally, the formation of The Malaysian Society for Trenchless Technology (MATT), creates a broad-based platform, with national reach to promote Trenchless in Malaysia,
Westrade has always positioned itself firmly at the forefront of the digital revolution and recognised the role these events have to play in bringing together global audiences on a more frequent basis. During 2020, in the absence of any live events, we placed an even greater emphasis on developing our digital offering introducing a number of highly successful and well received events including No-Dig Live Digital and our Trenchless Tea Breaks series. Over the course of this year, you can expect to see continued acceleration in the development of our Westrade Digital portfolio as we discover new and creative ways to connect this buoyant sector.
I hope you have found this update useful and agree that there is much to look forward to from both our live and digital events. For now, stay safe and well and I look forward to seeing you at one of our events later this year.