Confex claims visitors up, but total attendance down
by Annie Byrne
International Confex has released pre-ABC audited figures that indicate the event last week attracted 11,058 visitors, up two per cent on the previous year’s 10,857. Exhibitors took fewer staff to the show, resulting in the overall total attendance figure falling three per cent, to 14,359 from 14,786 last year. Portfolio director Duncan Reid, says he is pleased with the figures that “not only highlight the renewed optimism within the industry but the reputation Confex has as the place to undertake business, source new ideas, network and learn”. “More importantly buyers were out in force and spending money. I think the industry can be a bit more optimistic about 2010, we certainly won’t see 2007 or 2008 spending levels, but the show has gone some way to re-energising and revitalising the industry.”Head of sales and marketing, Harrogate International Centre, Paul Phillips, reported one of its most successful events ever with the Association of Surgeons signing up to bring their conference to Harrogate in 2014, 2018 and 2022. Confex Knowledge, the show’s professional education programme featured keynote sessions by BBC correspondent Martin Bell, Time Out editor, Mark Frith and Jo Farley, co-founder of Green & Blacks, as well as 60 parallel seminar sessions which drew a total of near on 4,000, according to the organisers. International Confex 2011 will be held 1-3 March, at Earls Court.