Enthusiastic response to inaugural Major Events Summit

With 180-plus attendees across the two days of the first Major Events Summit (26-27 October), organiser Major Events International (MEI) has been commended for the interactive style of the event, and the “engaging” nature of networking opportunities.

The first day “burrowed into the most important aspects of security at major events” with discussions covering themes such as spectator safety, CBRN, cyber and physical security, and entering the supply chain. Notable speakers and panellists included Bosch Security Systems, Atkins, International Centre for Sports Security and Selex ES, with the government’s export credit agency, UK Export Finance, partnering on day 1.

Keynote speaker for day 1, Sir Brian Burridge, Senior VP UK Corporate at Finmeccanica, commented: “I always value the opportunity to support MEI events because there is always strong attendance from the companies who together form the very impressive capability that now exists in this area. Only by working collaboratively and promoting discussion and the exchange of ideas across the entire spectrum of the supply chain can we provide the innovative solutions that clients now require.”

Day 1 was rounded off with the inaugural MEI Awards Dinner, with football legend Alvin Martin hosting the evening. Dinner guests were treated to anecdotes and entertainment in between courses, culminating in the presentation of exclusive Awards to “best of breed” MEI Members. The Awards recognised the achievements of MEI Members in areas such as security technology, innovation and temporary overlay.

Day 2 focused on the emerging theme of event services and venue operations covering topics such as fan experience, innovation and future trends and finishing with an exclusive ‘rights’ holders’ panel where attendees learned about challenges and opportunities working with sports governing bodies including AFL Europe. Megan Hession, CEO of AFL Europe, found the event “hugely useful” and has already confirmed her participation in 2016’s Summit.

Headline speaker for day 2, Fabrice Doreau, head of strategy – Olympics and major events at ATOS, said: “ATOS continue to widen participation in non-Olympic events and sporting venues. The Summit was a great opportunity to articulate plans and showcase how ATOS embrace digital transformation to provide integrated services for a holistic experience inside and outside the stadium. Thanks MEI for the invitation and I look forward to the 2016 edition.”

The highly interactive event featured a twitter wall provided by MEI Member Thinkwall, while innovative polling and voting app MEETOO encouraged delegates to participate actively and share their views on discussion topics.

Dennis Mills, CEO of Major Events International, commented: “The objective of the Summit was to create a peer-to-peer environment for open discussion and knowledge sharing and we have received tremendous feedback, continuing to deliver focus on intelligent buyer and supplier interaction. We have established a fantastic platform to build on for next year and look forward to 2016.”

Major Events International has announced the dates for next year’s summit as 11 and 12 October.

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