Diversified Business Communications UK has reported a substantial 18% increase in attendance for the second edition of its office* show, which took place last week, on 15-16 September, at London’s Earls Court. The show’s 165 plus exhibitors were joined by over 3,675 PAs, EAs, office managers and senior administrators from thousands of different organisations from all across the country.
Building on the successful foundations of its launch event last year, office* is now firmly established as the UK’s leading event dedicated to meeting the business, training and networking needs of Britain’s office professionals. Hailed a resounding success by its visitors and exhibitors, the show floor was buzzing with business whilst the lively, topic-focused seminar sessions also saw a rise in attendance, with many filled to capacity. This year’s show also saw an increased social media presence, with thousands of Twitter and facebook followers able to share in the show’s activities via hundreds of live updates from office*’s exhibitors, attendees and high-profile speakers throughout the event.
Highlights of the show included inspirational, standing-room only Keynotes from Jacqueline Gold, CEO of Ann Summers and Knickerbox, and Michelle Mone OBE, co-owner of MJM International and creator of leading designer lingerie brand Ultimo. Whilst the opening day of the show, Thursday 15 September, saw thousands of visitors sporting National PA Day stickers to mark their support of the 1st annual National PA Day, plus the grand unveiling of the UK’s 1st annual National PA Survey.
“Exhibitor feedback from this year’s show has been very positive,” says Ali Mead, office*’s event manager. “We’ve had many exhibitors telling us it was their best show yet, with over 60% rebooking onsite for next year’s show! We are absolutely delighted with the calibre of this year’s attendees and proud to have shown significant growth in both visitor and exhibitor numbers. The atmosphere was electric and both the launches of National PA Day on Thursday 15 September and the first ever online portal for office managers – ifom.co.uk, on Friday 16 September, were very well received. We are already looking forward to 2012!”
The high quality of attending visitors and number of genuine leads generated has ensured that a record number of exhibitors have rebooked their stands for next year, when the show moves to London’s Olympia. Visitor feedback has been equally upbeat, with attendees citing the show’s vibrant atmosphere, variety of exhibitors, and fantastic choice of “value for money” training seminars, as being integral to their office* experience and also a major factor in the show’s continuing success.
“office* is fabulous. It acknowledges backroom admin as well as top of the top PAs. Even bigger and better than last year,” says Isabella Kpobie, MST office manager, Merton & Kingston MST Team.
“The show was very well organised – I’ve really enjoyed it. I found the seminars motivational, picked up some great tips and reminders for how to make my life easier. The seminar passport was great value for money,” says Heather Glass, support co-ordinator to head of housing services, Midland Heart.
“It’s my first time at office* and I’ve been here the whole day. We have found lots of useful products for our office and will definitely be back next year,” says Michelle Cronsha, legal secretary, Wm Morrison Supermarket Plc.
“It’s my first visit to office* and I have been here for the whole day. We’ve attended lots of seminars and had a good look around the show. office* has reinforced that being a PA is a vital role within any organisation,” says Samantha Thompson, PA, AXA.
“Last year we had 150 leads in two days, this year we had 130 on day one! We’re definitely rebooking for 2012,” says Dominic from Lashmar Theatre Tickets.
“The show has upped its game from last year. We are looking forward to following up leads with a broad range of attendees,” says Jemma Griffiths, corporate account manager, Fortnum & Mason.
“The show is really buzzing and we’ve been flat out. The quality of visitors has been amazing,” says Trevor King, director of corporate clothing and gifts supplier T King Associates.
“office* delivered on its ability to drive in its target audience in volume and quality. It has certainly proved its value to us by delivering high calibre buyers to our stand. We have already committed ourselves to the 2012 show,” says René Dee, CEO of one of the country’s most dynamic groups of venues, The Westminster Collection.
“Having a stand at office* gave us a great opportunity to get out of the office and meet both existing customers and potential new ones face to face. The atmosphere was really friendly, and all of the visitors were happy to stop by our stall and have a chat. We’d definitely be up for doing it again next year,” says Sabrina Hamilton from Fruit For The Office.
“We attended this show for the first time and are very pleased that we did so. It was an excellent event, enabling us to promote Pukka brand awareness and to gather very encouraging feedback from end consumers about our products. Overall, we are very positive about the show and we hope to attend again next year,” says Marge Barnes, overseas sales & marketing manager, Pukka Pads.
“This has undoubtedly been the most successful show we have attended in 12 years. On the first day we signed up in excess of 700 new registered users. We will be back,” says Mike Caridia, managing director of pa-assist.com.
office* 2012 will take place in the new venue of Olympia, London, on 12-13 September 2012. For further information, please visit www.officeshow.co.uk.