My Working Life by Adam Jones

The Showplans CEO on extreme sports, the firm’s achievements and his fifteen minutes of fame on TV.

Twitter Facebook Google+ LinkedIn
Adam-the-Jones-NEW-resized.jpg

I was born in Carmarthen, South Wales on Christmas Day 1980, ruining my mum’s Christmas dinner. We did make the front page of the South Wales Evening Post for her plights though.


We moved to a small Somerset town called Wincanton. Many have misconceptions that there’s nothing to do, but my experience couldn’t have been further from that.


I was quite naughty at school and was probably a bit of a rebel, but it’s all relative; at my school you were seen as naughty if your shirt wasn’t tucked in.


That said, I did once get suspended for being caught in the girl’s dormitories.


I answer to many nicknames, none of which are appropriate for publication but some of the less explicit nicknames are Bones, Joner or Joneser.


I’ve never been afraid to get my hands dirty. During the summer holidays I worked on an organic farm, initially picking weeds out from between crops. By the end of the holidays I’d been promoted to tractor driver at the age of 14.


I used to be into some extreme sports. I still like downhill mountain biking and I try to visit Wales with uni friends when possible but the climbs get harder every time and my confidence outweighs my ability.


I am a big F1 fan and would love to drive in a competitive race series. I’m sure there’s still time for my F1 racing career to take off…if anybody fancies sponsoring me?


I was 28 when I started Showplans with Richard Dove. We had a couple of thousand pounds of savings between us, which we used to buy two AutoCAD licences and a couple of PCs.


Initially Showplan’s HQ was my one-bedroom bungalow in Fleet – unlike Google, Microsoft and Amazon we didn’t even have the luxury of a garage to start our business from.


We had a few amazing clients to start with, most of whom are still clients to this day, including National Boat Shows, Media 10 and William Reed to name a few.


We had a vision to design technology solutions for the industry that would make organisers’ lives simpler and more efficient.


We also wanted to take on the big boys who offer floorplans for free and demonstrate that floorplans can unlock the full potential of a show – a service well worth paying for.


We’ve steadily grown over the last seven years to a team of ten, now working from a real office in Surrey, where we even have space to display our three EN Awards and an AEO Award with great pride.


Outside of work all my awards are mostly either football or driving related, I also have a medal for the U15’s Dorset and Somerset Javelin record.


I play football most Sundays, I find that it’s a great way to keep fit and let off steam, although those on the receiving end of one of my infamous slide tackles probably don’t enjoy the game quite as much as me.


I’ve been married for two and a half years to my lovely wife Jody, who I first met during university in Swansea.


We were both on the same Industrial Design course but only started dating in the last few weeks of our final year while exhibiting our major projects at the New Designers exhibition at the BDC.


I’ve probably had more than my fifteen minutes of fame.


I’ve been on Going Live in the 80’s; I was seen dancing to a Robbie William’s song on Top of the Pops in the 90’s; TFI Friday, and my most recent appearance was on The One Show during the Coronation Festival at Buckingham Palace.


I’m immensely proud of what Showplans has achieved, especially when considering we started with practically no money, a few ideas and a lot of coffee.

Twitter Facebook Google+ LinkedIn

Related Stories

EventTech 17 gears up for products, presentations and a playroom

EventTech 17 is set to become the UK’s largest event technology exhibition when it opens at International Confex next week.

Lion-Cachet: Event industry 'needs additional investment'

Chad Lion-Cachet, chairman of investment company Clico Capital, is calling for more investment in the events industry, ahead of his UK Events Week seminar next week.

Good practice with data

Simon Clayton, chief ideas officer at RefTech, on being open, transparent, and accurate about what you are doing with the data you handle.

Elsewhere on EN

EventTech 17 gears up for products, presentations and a playroom

EventTech 17 gears up for products, presentations and a playroom

EventTech 17 is set to become the UK’s largest event technology exhibition when it opens at International Confex next week.
Lion-Cachet: Event industry 'needs additional investment'

Lion-Cachet: Event industry 'needs additional investment'

Chad Lion-Cachet, chairman of investment company Clico Capital, is calling for more investment in the events industry, ahead of his UK Events Week seminar next week.
N200|GES partners with Gleanin on socially-driven event registration

N200|GES partners with Gleanin on socially-driven event registration

Event registration, lead retrieval and event intelligence firm N200|GES has announced a strategic partnership with social software company Gleanin.

CONFEX LIVE

Most read Stories

Building emerald cities

Building emerald cities

From Malaria to Blenheim, through to UBM, Jane Risby-Rose – the 20-year story of her yellow brick road industry journey.
5 top marketing tips from AEO Forums 2016

5 top marketing tips from AEO Forums 2016

Looking to the future and learning from the past at AEO Forums 2016.
2 Minutes with Sarah Mayo

2 Minutes with Sarah Mayo

Sarah Mayo, marketing director EMEA, Freeman and FreemanXP talks about her new role, playing golf with Westlife and the skills needed in our industry.

Latest News

EventTech 17 gears up for products, presentations and a playroom

EventTech 17 gears up for products, presentations and a playroom

EventTech 17 is set to become the UK’s largest event technology exhibition when it opens at International Confex next week.
Lion-Cachet: Event industry 'needs additional investment'

Lion-Cachet: Event industry 'needs additional investment'

Chad Lion-Cachet, chairman of investment company Clico Capital, is calling for more investment in the events industry, ahead of his UK Events Week seminar next week.
N200|GES partners with Gleanin on socially-driven event registration

N200|GES partners with Gleanin on socially-driven event registration

Event registration, lead retrieval and event intelligence firm N200|GES has announced a strategic partnership with social software company Gleanin.

Latest Galleries

100% Optical 2017

100% Optical 2017

More than 8,000 visitors arrived at ExCeL London on 4-6 February for the fourth edition of 100% Optical. The show featured more than 175,000 frames, catwalk performances and a comprehensive education programme.
Cumbria Flood Expo 2017

Cumbria Flood Expo 2017

The inaugural Cumbria Flood Expo, organised by flood emergency response charity CERT UK, took place on 2-3 February at Carlisle Racecourse.
Mexia Communications at 10

Mexia Communications at 10

PR and content marketing agency Mexia Communications celebrated its 10th anniversary with a Mexican Fiesta at the Royal College of Physicians on 26 January.

Latest Opinions

Good practice with data

Good practice with data

Simon Clayton, chief ideas officer at RefTech, on being open, transparent, and accurate about what you are doing with the data you handle.
Beware of the punter

Beware of the punter

Trevor Punt, managing director of TBG Group, on the rise of the stereotypical punter and the need for nerves of steel.
Peer to peer

Peer to peer

Will Broadfoot, director of Footfall Events & Marketing on unlocking exhibitor potential and improving participation.