Each week, we catch up with those trade show professionals recognized as the 2013 Expo Elite and find out a little about what they’re doing and what might be keeping them up at night . This week, we talked to Marco Pardi, president of business technology events for UBM Tech.
Expo: What’s new with you at UBM Tech?
Marco Pardi: We’re looking at some of the new markets that are connected to traditional IT technology. One is this whole new market that is erupting around the Internet of Things.
We’re launching a new event in the fall time frame called the Designers of Things, otherwise known as DoT. It’s a modest launch, maybe a 1,000-person event, focused on professionals who are tasked with creating the next wave of wearable computers, industrial technology sensors, tracking data in physical pieces, things like that.
It’s a cool new market, something we’ve dealt with a little, maybe in a single session at a conference, but this is an entire event focused on that market. From a market standpoint that is something very new to our portfolio and we have high hopes for a strong and long run.
Expo: What’s been your biggest challenge over the past year?
Pardi: At our existing events, it’s been a year of fighting market momentum in 2013. There
have been so many issues around the economy and the government and technology spending that I’m looking forward to a return to growth this year.
But there is one market in particular that has done well despite the slow growth around us. It’s our IT security portfolio, under the Black Hat brand. That event continues to grow. There are very early signs that we’re already going to see strong double-digit growth this year, which is one of th
e nicer performers in our portfolio.
We are in a very unique position in that we have a very strong, very tightly connected digital or online community business that is writing about and covering the market day in and day out.
For instance, for our Interop event, which generally speaking covers the IT industry, we work closely with our Information Week content team. They’re very involved in helping us put the program together, identifying trends and identifying speakers. Many of the contributors who are writing for Information Week are also invited to speak at the conference.
In the run-up to creating the program, we’re talking about trends we’re seeing, where the “hot money” is, where people are spending money right now and also just staying real close to our customer set on the exhibitor side.