The need to drum up international participation in events continues to grow. With that in mind, Marketplace Events (MPE) has signed a formal agreement with the Italian Trade Commission (ITC) ahead of the launch of its newest trade and consumer show, the American International Motorcycle Expo (AIMExpo).
The new partnership positions the ITC as MPE’s sales agent to Italian powersports companies that want to market their products in the United States and seek to establish and strengthen essential connections by exhibiting at the October event. In turn, AIMExpo will showcase Italian products to the North American marketplace by working with ITC’s Los Angeles office to create an Italian pavilion at the inaugural show.
Here, Mike Webster (pictured), president of Marketplace Events’ tradeshow division, explains the decision to partner with this international trade commission ahead of the show launch Oct. 16-20, 2013, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando.
EXPO: What is the partnership between Marketplace Events and the Italian Trade Commission going to be?
Mike Webster: We recognized that there was a definite need for an alternative event that serves the changing needs of the motorcycle-powersports industry in a more efficient and effective way.
The obvious solution was to create an event that emulates the highly successful EICMA [Esposizione Internazionale Ciclo Motociclo e Accessori] show, which takes place in Milan, Italy, every November. Like EICMA, the AIMExpo is a trade and consumer show for the motorcycle-powersports industry timed to align with the fall season reveal of new motorcycles, aftermarket products, safety equipment and accessories.
It is intended to create a greater efficiency for the industry to conduct business with retailers, promote new products to the press and consumers, while creating a heightened interest for motorcycling as both a sport and as a viable green transportation alternative. The tradeshow that has served the motorcycle industry for the past 40 years is ill-timed, stale, shrinking significantly and no longer delivers value to exhibitors and attendees.
Our new partnership with the Italian Trade Commission most certainly reinforces our vision for AIMExpo. The Italian Trade Commission has made AIMExpo the show of choice for Italian powersports companies who market to America with the creation of an Italian pavilion in the inaugural AIMExpo.
EXPO: How did this deal come about and what are the specific benefits to each of the parties?
Webster: Because AIMExpo is an emulation of EICMA in Milan, and knowing that the Italian Trade Commission was in need of a new method of showcasing Italian companies to the North American marketplace, it was only natural that we would begin working together. I have known and done business with many of the Italian Trade Commission officials for the past 20 years. We have developed a high level of mutual respect and trust over that time, which played a key role in finalizing our current agreement with them.
EXPO: Does AIMExpo have any plans to court other countries besides Italy?
Webster: Most definitely. We plan to announce new partnerships soon that are currently in development with several countries and regions, including South America, Asia and others.
EXPO: Do you think this will attract international attendees and exhibitors?
Webster: Yes, most definitely. The Italian pavilion alone will attract at least 40 companies, and likely many more. Also, we exhibited in the EICMA show this month and received a great deal of interest from exhibitor prospects in several countries as well as trade attendees from Italy and a dozen other countries. The hallmark of AIMExpo will be to energize the motorcycle-powersports industry and excite the consumers, while providing an efficient platform to conduct business in the most effective fashion.