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The opening of IMEX America 2023 marked a welcome return to form for the global events industry today. With a 20 per cent increase in space taken by exhibitors and a 9 per cent increase in the number of booths – 360 in total – this year’s show is officially the largest in its 12-year history. Nearly half of all exhibiting companies have increased their booth sizes and every sector of the market has grown, the majority by double-digits.

Asia Pacific and Africa dominate in terms of increased floor space by country or region. Morocco has doubled in size, while Ho Chi Minh is exhibiting for the first time and bringing partners. Both the Japan and Hong Kong Tourism Board booths are at least twice as big as before. Meanwhile, US and Canadian exhibitors have expanded 19 per cent on 2022 and the hotel sector is also making a big business statement with a 23 per cent expansion, including increases by Hilton and IHG.

Among the 65 new booths for 2023 are Mexican Caribbean, Santa Clara (California), Greenville (South Carolina), Jio World Convention Centre (India), Explori and Meow Wolf, owners of Las Vegas’s Omega Mart and Area 15.

Opening IMEX America 2023

Opening IMEX America 2023

As IMEX Group CEO Carina Bauer explains, these increases point to an underlying robustness in a market that many thought would take three years or more to return to form post-pandemic, “The global business events industry never fails to surprise in its ability to recover quickly from a set-back. These figures are good news for the market and bode well for short-term business and, importantly, long-term positive economic impact. In a world experiencing so much turmoil, it’s incumbent upon us to focus on the underlying impact of our industry – bringing people together for deeper human connections and mutual benefit. We’ll keep that front of mind as we do business here this week.”

Focus on innovation and experimentation

A focus on innovation, experimentation and high-quality learning means attendees are spoiled for choice in between their exhibitor meetings. The Inspiration Hub, sponsored by WebEx, features a range of theaters, a Wellbeing Wheel, the Google Xi CoLaboratory and a dedicated IMEX|EIC People and Planet Theater. Encore are also offering fireside chats and their striking ‘Break Free’ Immersive Theater.

The Inspiration Hub has been redesigned with sustainability and easier traffic flow in mind. It now features a bare floor with different colored carpet ‘dots’ to delineate learning zones and activations. New design features make it more accessible for people in wheelchairs and to enhance the experience for those who are neurodivergent.

Other developments at this week’s show include more restaurants and snack bars, free water refill stations, seating and rest areas plus a dedicated Quiet Space Lounge and a Resilience Room presented in partnership with The Neu Project and Marriott International.

IMEX America with more than 4000 buyers and 3400 exhibiting companies on more than 360 booths

IMEX America with more than 4000 buyers and 3400 exhibiting companies on more than 360 booths

With over 70,000 meetings planned between 4000+ buyers and 3,400 exhibiting companies on more than 360 booths, IMEX America 2023 sets the stage for an exceptional week of deal-making, networking and professional growth and development.

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