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08 July 2020

The future of fairs and events: a new way of thinking and doing

The Covid 19 crisis has forced us to rethink the fairs and events’ format as we have known them until now. The launching of BNEW (Barcelona New Economy Week), which will take place from October 6 to 9, is a paradigm that will shape the future of business and commercial meetings. It is a hybrid event with a physical and face-to-face part and a digital part that complement each other and that allows a very large number of participants to attend.

BNEW seeks to create, at the same time, synergies between five activity sectors: logistics, real estate, digital industry, e-commerce and economic zones. To do this, it will have a very easy to use digital platform that will allow all registered visitors to stream the entire knowledge program. Likewise, this platform will offer more networking possibilities for all participants and they will be able to contact all the participating companies and professionals.

 Lastly, the BNEW digital platform will allow visitors to access all the innovation and the latest trends in each sector with presentations and a directory categorized by product and service type. BNEW will be held in different unique buildings in the city of Barcelona, all of them with open, digital spaces committed to the 2030 Agenda.

The on-site part of the event will count with the maximum hygienic-sanitary measures as of the emergency caused by the pandemic. Precisely, this will be one of the points that will mark the future of future fairs and events. The aim is to ensure that these meeting points are safe for professionals and different players to meet and do business with all the guarantees. This means from hygiene procedures to technology to facilitate social distancing and an impeccable level of sanitation.

What does seem clear is that professional fairs will be essential to reactivate the economy after the Covid-19 crisis. The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry (UFI) dedicated the International Fair Day on June 5 to emphasize their importance as drivers of the reconstruction of the economy. Thus, their role as exceptional showcases for presenting products and services and offering opportunities to generate business was emphasized, especially for small and medium-sized companies, which represent the backbone of any economy and for which face-to-face events are an essential sales channel.

It is also evident that many of these meetings will be increasingly digital. Also, the way speakers and attendees interact with each other, meals or transport to spaces: everything must be adapted to the new normality. Experts point out that the physical events will either inevitably be smaller or have a mixed format, with booths that ensure separation, but facilitate quick and easy encounters. Open-air meetings will also be more common, as well as more staggered arrivals and departures, with prior checks.


The future of fairs and events: a new way of thinking and doing
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