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MARKETING: EMS Draws The Cape's Attention


Recent Western Cape Business News

EXHIBITION Management Services (EMS) is arguably one of the best-known and most active exhibition companies in Africa. It is the continent’s leading independent organiser with associates based throughout the continent.

This year it will be active in Cape Town too (Oil & Gas Africa) and will have another show in Johannesburg which is likely to attract considerable interest from the Cape (Africa’s Big Seven), a leading food and beverage event.

Established in 1981, EMS has a long history of working with government ministries, parastatals, professional bodies and the private sector for the benefit of the peoples of Africa.

CEO John Thomson was a founder member of the Exhibition Association of Southern Africa (EXSA) and to date has been instrumental in the staging of over 200 exhibitions throughout the continent.

In 2010 he was inducted into EXSA’s hall of fame for 30 years contribution to the exhibition industry.

EMS is involved in the total spectrum of the industry from the establishment and management of exhibition venues, to organising exhibitions for its own and other principals’ accounts, to site arrangements for national pavilions abroad.

The recent launch of the 2012 edition of the Oil & Gas Africa Exhibition & Conference at the Royal Cape Yacht Club in Cape Town immediately drew in 30 industry-leading exhibitors. The big names once again supporting the event include Algoa Oil, Allweld, Anchor Industries, Barloworld, DCD Dorbyl, HSE, Hytorc, Jachris, LH Martinhusen, LVSA, Marine Data Solutions, New Way Motors, Petroleum Agency South Africa, Project Freight and Toprope.

The fifth Oil & Gas Africa takes place from 13 to 15 March 2012 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

A recent announcement by Trade & Industry Minister Rob Davies stated that the oil and gas sector is a priority under the Industrial Policy Action Plan 2 (IPAP 2). Conference organiser John Victor, a director at Fair Consultants SA, has made oil and gas a focal point of the local content module of the conference programme. As such, the theme of the 2012 Oil and Gas Conference is ‘Leveraging IPAP2 – The Inclusion of Oil and Gas as a Priority Sector’.

The purpose of IPAP 2 is to expand production in value-added sectors with high growth and employment potential. These sectors will compete in export markets, and in the domestic market against imports.”

IPAP 2 places emphasis on employment-generating production and services sectors that encourage increased participation by historically disadvantaged people and regions in the economy,” he adds. “In the medium term, IPAP 2 should greatly increase South Africa’s contribution to industrial development in Africa. The action plan may also form a major element of the New Growth Path, which aims to create five million new jobs by 2020.”

Other topics to be addressed at the conference include project updates for the sub-Saharan oil, gas and petrochemical sectors, as well as the latest developments in African and global projects. The programme line-up will feature well-known internationally speakers.

Another EMS show, Africa’s Big Seven, has also proven to be in demand by producers in the Cape.

Last year more than a quarter of the over 200 countries around the world sent exhibitors and visitors to Africa’s Big Seven (AB7), the biggest food and beverage trade show on the African continent.

Last year’s AB7 expo at Gallagher Convention Centre in mid-July recorded its best attendance ever. Exhibitors and visitors came from 54 countries in Africa and around the world, a 40% increase on 2010 figures. And the visitor count jumped by 11%, over 900 more than 2010, with a total of 8 518 people passing through the doors. All the indications are that this year’s event may be even more successful, according to Thomson. Local and international exhibitors are offered an unprecedented opportunity to showcase their products and services to global markets.

Almost 60% of visitors were company owners, managing directors or directors of companies. Just over half of the 8 518 visitors had buying powers or were able to authorise or recommend purchases.

This event is a great platform for business to business interaction since many decision makers attend, and that propels business,” Thomson says.

Thomson says 94% of visitors believed the show was of value to the retail trade; most confirmed that they had established valuable new business contacts.

Almost all visitors said they would attend again in 2012, and 96% said they would recommend the shows to their business colleagues,” adds Thomson. “That’s very positive for us, and very encouraging for the South African economy.”

Africa’s Big Seven 2012 takes place from 15 to 17 July 2012 at Gallagher Convention Centre, Midrand.

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