Client: Rapid News Group
Event: Med-Tech Innovation Expo 2019
Date: 15-16 May 2019
Attendance: 3,000 attendees, 300 exhibitors
ABOUT THE CLIENT
Rapid News Group operate world class trade shows and publish magazines all over the world. They connect prospective buyers to companies who have the cutting-edge solutions they need – the catalyst to get business moving. The group own Med-Tech Innovation Expo, which is the UK & Ireland’s leading event for medical design and manufacturing technology.
The aim of the event is to bring together designers, engineers, innovators and manufacturers from across the medical and healthcare sectors to explore new ideas, understand emerging technologies, and source innovative products and services.
The first two editions of the expo under Rapid News Group ownership, in 2017 and 2018, took place at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry, and the 2019 renewal was then relocated to the NEC. Ambitious expo expansion plans had to prove successful in its first year at the larger venue.
WHY THE NEC?
The move to the NEC was made based on two significant factors; expo growth and venue location.
The relocation allowed for a greater number of features and exhibitors across the show floor, offering the expo a new dimension to its previous editions. Event progression was key to the client and it was recognised that the NEC could host the showcase event that their industry required. The size of the venue also allows for future growth of the expo.
The excellent venue location, at the centre of the national road and rail network, made the event more accessible to visitors and exhibitors from across the country. This accessibility was then further enhanced by the almost 2,000 hotel rooms on the NEC Campus, important to those in attendance across both days of the expo.
Duncan Wood, Chief Executive of Rapid News Group said of the decision to move the expo: “Our ambitions for the show in terms of size and both national and international impact can only be satisfied at the UK’s premier exhibition venue. When we acquired the show back in late 2016, we always had this move in mind. Now, with two successful growth years under our belt, it is time to take this step. We already have a great relationship with the NEC and have run other group events there such as TCT Show and Interplas for many years. So, between that relationship, the easy accessibility for the venue by road, rail and air, and the opportunities for further growth it was an obvious choice.”
The two-day expo took place in Hall 2. The expo consisted of exhibition space and three conference stages, offering over 50 presentations and sessions from industry representatives. The event was complemented by the Med-Tech Innovation Conference and the Medilink UK Healthcare Business Awards.
The only challenge to creating a successful event was in the relocation, moving the existing audience, whilst attracting increased attendee and exhibitor numbers. Duncan Wood explains how this was handled: “The industry can see how we’re committed to it, and this was important to establish before we made the move. For sure there is always a little resistance to change, particularly one that is so significant, but it’s our job to understand that and hold hands during the move.”
The little resistance was certainly outweighed by the prospect of growth and an improved expo. No issues were encountered in the move, with the transition to a new venue proving seamless.
The new expo features, on top of the existing ones, created an engaging two-day expo. The increase in space allowed for a comfortable show expansion and the consequent welcoming of 3,000 visitors and 300 exhibitors.
The expo brought together visitors from 34 countries and exhibitors from 14 countries, giving this event a truly international and industry leading nature.
Duncan Wood concluded of the successful event: “We are delighted with another significant step forward for this event as we work to create a defining event experience for the UK medtech sector. The two days contained many highlights, new products, new companies, world-class presentations and stunning applications. Whilst as organisers we have had superb feedback, we recognise we can’t do it without industry support, so we thank all exhibitors, speakers, sponsors and partners for their efforts.”