After a one-year hiatus due to Covid, the largest meetings industry event returned to a new home at Mandalay Bay Casino Resort this week and the buzz at the 10th annual hosted buyer show was reminiscent of years past. IMEX Group Chairman Ray Bloom reported that more than 3,300 buyers and 2,200 exhibiting companies attended. The pop-up destination exhibits represented more than 200 countries with many adding to their presence when the United States opened travel from many of those destinations effective the day before doors opened.
“This IMEX week has given us all reason to believe the industry’s future is bright,” said Carina Bauer, IMEX CEO.
The mood in the room was upbeat as every member of the panel shared success stories and paid tribute to the resilience and adaptability of the global business events industry, as demonstrated at IMEX America by the sheer scale and scope of this year’s show after close to two years of industry shutdown.
The show included200 education sessions, new education tracks, a new People & Planet Village with a ‘misfit’ fruit and vegetable juice bar plus sustainability sessions; a Tech Therapy Area and a daily wellbeing program, which featured the traditional #IMEXrun on Wednesday morning.
World-class experts and speakers, specialist education for corporate, association and agency executives together with workshops and programmes for students and faculty topped off a busy reunion week.
Smart Meetings founder and CEO Marin Bright, an Inspiration Hub speaker summed up the feeling of reuniting in-person with so many partners and friends as “a long-awaited hug for the soul and a much more effective way to do business than Zoom calls.”
IMEX America 2022 will return to Mandalay Bay Convention Center October 11 – 13, with Smart Monday, powered by MPI on October 10.