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The IBC Exhibition is expanding

Roger has developed a vast understanding of IBC during his long career at Quantel, where he spent a lot of time planning for and attending IBC Exhibitions, and is now ready for his first IBC in his new role as chairman. Here is his review on the expanding exhibition.
Before talking about IBC2016, I must pay tribute to my predecessor John Holton who has shaped the exhibition for what seems like forever, writes Roger Thornton.

IBC continually moves on and so does our home, the RAI Amsterdam. If you attended IBC2015 you may have noticed some construction and development around the venue. This is now a new exhibition hall, which has been eagerly incorporated into our plans to expand IBC’s footprint.

To allow the new hall to be introduced into the exhibition, hall numbering has had to be adjusted. Located next to Hall 8, it is only sensible that the new hall should be Hall 9. That means old Hall 9 becomes Hall 11, and old Hall 11 becomes Hall 12. Hall 10 keeps its number. The ballroom of the Elicium, which houses Sony and IBC TV, is now Hall 13. Last year’s new building, the Amtrium, is now Hall 4, and is again home to Imagine Communications. Among the exhibitors taking advantage of the new Hall 9 is my former company, now known as SAM (Snell Advanced Media).

The vast temporary structure at the front of the RAI hosting our IBC Content Everywhere Hub and many of our new media exhibits is still Hall 14, and the temporary building housing bespoke meeting rooms is now Hall 15. That totals fifteen halls plus the outdoor exhibits, making 2016 by far the biggest IBC in terms of floor space.

What is filling all these halls? Most obviously, more exhibitors than ever before. We have seen a real rush for exhibition space, not least from businesses in the multi-platform distribution and monetisation space, and from app developers and advertising innovators.

One important feature is the IBC Launch Pad, located in the new Hall 9. This is a dedicated space for first-time exhibitors, helping them claim their ground in the leading international event for the industry. IBC helps them by providing a cost-effective package and they help us by bringing new ideas and new business to IBC.

I have already mentioned two of our feature areas. Over in Hall 3 you will find another, the IBC Technology in Action Theatre. This features a series of industry case studies at the leading edge of technology, including the cloud and IP as well as production, post and delivery. The sessions are free to attend, and are recorded so you can watch them later on IBC TV video on demand.

This year also sees the return of the popular IBC Hackfest, doubling in size and being taken to the next level. From 09:00 on Saturday the brightest individuals in coding come together in the Diamond Lounge to apply ideas and software solutions to generate innovative concepts leveraging partner technologies. We create the environment and see what they come up with.

For forward thinkers, the IBC Future Zone is another favourite. We talk to the world’s leading R&D labs and universities, and the exhibit their latest projects and prototypes. The researchers working on them come along too, so not only can you see
and test what they are thinking, you can influence the direction of their work.

The IBC Future Zone is also home to the IBC Technical Posters, which have been reimagined for 2016 and promise to be more engaging and more interactive. You will have a chance to discuss the ideas with the authors, making it even more interactive. The Future Zone is just outside Hall 8.

All these special features are free to visitors, as are events like movie screenings and the IBC Awards Ceremony. IBC even give you a free tram ticket to get around Amsterdam.

IBC is a comprehensive exhibition featuring not only all the major players but also all emerging and innovative new companies. To help you get around we lay the exhibition out logically, with similar products grouped together and broad zones for content creation, management and delivery.

All this in a venue, and in a city, that is ideal for networking. We structure the event to make sure you have time to collect the latest information, see the vendors who can solve your challenges, and talk to friends, contacts and peers.

I hope to talk to as many of you as possible when we meet in Amsterdam. Your views will help us make future IBC events even better for you, so feel free to tell me your thoughts.