ISE Live & Online (1-2 June) closed its doors at the Fira de Barcelona after a successful two-day physical exhibition, with face-to-face networking, over 50 exhibitor booths, in-person keynotes and roundtables as well as the concurrent ISE Digital programme. It was a beacon of confidence for the safe return of live events in the city.
Integrated Systems Events Managing Director, Mike Blackman opened the show and said: “This event is important for the AV and live events industries, and for the city. It’s been a 17-year journey to get to Barcelona so it’s bittersweet not to make the big bang we’d hoped for our debut, but we know the value of live events for forging trust, deeper business relationships and driving business. I hope this sends a message of confidence to cities around the world that live events can be safe and successful. We’ll be back in Barcelona, with all our might, in February 2022.”
The first hybrid event from ISE, which combined live and digital content, achieved 1,431 in-person attendees on Day 1, and 990 on Day 2 in Barcelona. Over 8,000 registered for ISE Digital, which had 120 live sessions and generated 13,759 unique views, 107,718 minutes watched (1,778 hours) and 442 online chats.
Speaking at the event, Jordi Puigneró, Vice President of the Government of Catalonia, declared: “Today we reopen Barcelona and Catalonia to the world. This event celebrates the reactivation of fairs and congresses, paving the road to economic and social recovery.”
Ada Colau, Mayor of Barcelona, who accompanied Mr Puignero said: “Today we send a reactivation message.” They added: “The digital and audiovisual sector is strategic for the city, especially since so much industry talent is rooted in Barcelona. The city’s technological sector holds great potential for the coming years. We are convinced that the digital sector will be the most useful in helping us get out of the crisis as quickly as possible.”
All visitors within the venue had a negative COVID-19 anti-allergen test result prior to entry and wore FFP2 NR facemasks inside the venue. The feedback indicates that ISE Live & Online in Barcelona has been positively received by the AV industry, with optimistic comments from exhibitors:
“Barco attended ISE 2021 in Barcelona to connect with our customers. We have been in virtual, in video sessions for too long and we needed to meet face-to-face. The future is hybrid which means there will be some video, there will be some conference calling but there’s going to be a lot more face-to-face. Meeting back with our partners is what gives us energy,” explained Peter Pauwels, VP Sales EMEA at Barco.
Oriol Massague, Field Marketing Manager at Panasonic commented: “After more than a year without events and exhibitions, we were excited and delighted to meet people face-to-face again. From lenders, buyers, system integrators, distributors and sellers… everybody!”
“ISE is the centre point of the audiovisual sector in the whole world, it’s the meeting point. So having the meeting point in Barcelona will focus our economy in the sector. We have to bear in mind that in Catalonia we have a large amount of audiovisual companies, we have 1,100 companies with more than 26,000 employees in the sector. So having this meeting point here in Catalonia will strengthen the sector in the future,” said Joan Romero, CEO of ACCIÓ Catalonia Trade & Investment.
“A great occasion to relaunch the AV industry and open new business opportunities. Sono is a Spanish company and we have always been visitors to ISE. Having the show at home is great for us. We have been able to meet clients and suppliers and noticed an enormous interest and a great desire to reactivate the industry. It’s been a really positive experience for us, so we are very happy,” commented Ramon Vilar, Project Manager at Sono.
“It was a pleasure to be once again face to face with our clients, chatting and sharing with them, and reconnecting with the industry,” said Luis Garrido, Executive Director at Alfalite.
Sharing their event highlights, Marta Fernández, CMO at nsign.tv commented: “To reconnect with current and potential customers and show that life goes on, that the digital signage industry continues to grow, and that the pandemic has only accelerated it. And we are all convinced that the 2022 edition will be a resounding success.”
Highlighting some of the best AV solutions, start-ups and thought leaders in the industry, ISE Live & Online provided a fitting curtain-raiser, in difficult times, for ISE 2022.
“Over the last year and a half, AV professionals have showed their determination to stay connected virtually, while anxiously awaiting the opportunity to convene together in person. Through the commitment of many, from exhibitors to the Fira, the City of Barcelona, and the government of Catalonia, we were able to gather in person to learn, network, and celebrate the world of AV at ISE Barcelona,” said David Labuskes, CTS, CAE, RCDD, CEO of AVIXA. “It was wonderful to welcome the AV community back together and we get to do it again at ISE London, June 23-24!”
Giles Sutton, CEDIA Interim Co-CEO added: “In a week that celebrated Global Exhibitions Day, it was fantastic to see ISE return as a hybrid event. The live show provided attendees with the opportunity to engage with the industry and network amongst colleagues and friends – something that we have all missed out on recently. The positive atmosphere that was felt in and around the show floor was a sign that both exhibitors and visitors were pleased to be back. ISE Digital worked very well alongside the live event, providing those who were unable to attend, with a platform that was packed full of content. This hybrid event was a big step towards the industry getting back to normal and we look forward to returning to Barcelona once again in 2022.”
Content from ISE Digital, which includes sessions from the Main Stage at the Fira de Barcelona, is now available to view on-demand. Browse business leadership and product news from top brands, as well as keynotes, roundtables, and interviews with over 100 speakers. The channel is available until the end of 2021 to enjoy: https://digital.iseurope.org
There is one more in-person event planned before ISE Live & Online signs out for 2021. Join ISE in London on 23-24 June for networking and a chance to reconnect with the industry. There will be live keynotes and roundtables from the Main Stage – and, with an on-site pub built in the venue, come and enjoy a drink and some downtime with industry friends, colleagues and contacts. Register today here.