Integrated Systems Europe Events is taking pro A/V’s largest trade show to Barcelona in 2021, a nod to the record-setting attendance that saw almost 81,000 people pack the RAI in Amsterdam in February as the building continues to add temporary halls to accommodate eye-popping growth at ISE.
ISE 2019 and 2020 with remain in Amsterdam, followed by a “permanent” move to Gran Via, part of the Fira de Barcelona exhibition complex. ISE 2021 will take place February 2-5.
This news has plenty of people across the A/V industry saying, “Dios mio!” although they might be surprised at how Google translates that popular Spanish exclamation.
Why ISE Barcelona?
The decision around ISE Barcelona “comes after 18 months of research into the viability of remaining at the RAI Amsterdam,” according to an ISE announcement this morning.
“With annual growth in ISE exhibitors and attendees approaching 10%, and the international AV market forecast to grow by 5% per annum through to 2021, it was concluded that Integrated Systems Europe was outgrowing its popular Amsterdam location,” according to the Integrated Systems Events press release.
ISE 2018 attracted 80,923 attendees, of which 22,000 were visiting the show for the first time while 1,296 exhibitors filled 53,000 net square meters [570,000 square feet] of floor space in 15 halls. ISE 2019 is expected to increase on these record-breaking figures — ISE 2021 will likely follow similarly.
“The RAI and Amsterdam have provided a fantastic location, been great partners and contributed to the success of the show,” says ISE managing director Mike Blackman in the Integrated Systems Events announcement.
“But, demand from exhibitors, and the continued increase in the numbers of attendees, showed us that limited floor space was in danger of putting a brake on the show’s development. In spite of all our best efforts, this was not an issue we felt could be solved by staying at the RAI Amsterdam.
“We conducted extensive exhibitor and attendee research and visited many major exhibition centres in Europe before making this important decision.
“By announcing our move to one of Europe’s largest and most prestigious convention complexes, we can now continue to focus on creating a unique experience for everyone and confidently plan for long-term development.
“At the same time, we will ensure that the remaining two editions of ISE at the RAI Amsterdam are the best in its illustrious history and a fitting way to bring our 14-year relationship with the venue and city to a close,” says Blackman.
What We Know about ISE 2021 So Far
The Fira de Barcelona has two exhibition venues and hosts 140 international trade shows every year, featuring more than 30,000 exhibitors and attracting more than 2 million attendees annually. In total it has over 400,000 square meters [4.3 million square feet] of floor space and 14 halls.
Gran Via features eight halls and 200,000 square meters [almost 2.2 million square feet] of exhibition floor space.
Co-owners AVIXA and CEDIA are excited about the plans to move the show to Barcelona.
“Our thinking in coming to this decision has been driven by our desire to serve and deliver value for our members, attendees and exhibitors at ISE Barcelona and all shows,” says AVIXA CEO David Labuskes in the ISE 2021 announcement.
“We can better achieve these objectives in a venue that can evolve with us and continue to reflect the market we work in.
“The continued success of Integrated Systems Europe and the growth anticipated in the AV business meant that we knew this decision would need to be taken before too long. I’m delighted that we were able make that decision now so as to control events and to ensure that a smooth transition is possible.”
“Not only is the new venue a state of the art home for our show but the city of Barcelona is one of Europe’s most vibrant and exciting,” says CEDIA global president and CEO Tabatha O’Connor in the announcement.
“It’s the perfect choice for an exhibition and growing industry that engenders creativity and commerce.”