Excerpts of our conversation with Mr. Volkan Ataman, President of ACE of M.I.C.E at Turkey
- How did the concept of ACE of M.I.C.E. Turkey originate at Tourism Media Group? What are the advantages that the exhibition offers?
We established the concept and our new motto to stress our role in the global MICE industry. Our fundamental role has been to gathering the global stakeholders under the same umbrella and to allow them to expand their business network while enjoying inspiring session of the Speakers’ Corner programme where the participants introduced with the latest innovations and the trends of the event industry.
We offer our exhibitors to meet with the most qualified buyers from all around the world. Through the International Hosted Buyer Programme that we have been running with our name sponsor Turkish Airlines, exhibitors will find a platform where they can meet with the most suitable professionals to expand their business network.
- How has the exhibition evolved and developed over the years? What sets it apart?
The exhibition has kicked off unusually productive and had a great potential to be one of the leading global MICE industry trade-show. Although, beginning by 2015 we were not lucky since Istanbul has experienced several unfortunate events including a disastrous terrorist attack, a coup attempt our exhibition progressed for even better every year despite these incidents.
- How would you describe the accomplishments of the previous edition AME’18? What was the USP?
AME’18 was quite successful in terms of the networking potential it has offered, the content and the programme as a whole. Let me make it clearer with the numbers:
In 2018, more than 10.000 MICE professionals and participants visited the exhibition. 220 international and local firms providers exhibited during the show and there were 200 International hosted buyers from 41 countries and 417 local buyers. 3896 B2B meetings were set during the three-day show.
- What are the new elements or aspects that participants can look forward to in AME’19?
ACE of M.I.C.E. has renewed its face and will welcome the global MICE industry for the sixth time with a new concept developed under the motto of ‘Connecting Dots’.
We organized the Speakers’ Corner programme in order to provide very qualified sessions for our speakers to enjoy and meet with the latest innovations and trends of the event industry. Our question for the MICE industry professionals is if they here from the best. If their answer will be a yes the AME 19 Speakers’ Corner is the right place for them to be.
Participants of the ACE of M.I.C.E. will have the privilege to attend inspiring sessions of the Speakers’ Corner Programme and hear from the marketing and event professionals on various topics.For the sixth edition, session topics range from ‘Experiential Marketing – Design’, ‘Event Technologies’, ‘Destination Marketing’ and ‘E-sports’. Professionals of the top global event companies are lined up talk at the event and to deliver their unique expertise on the topics. Speakers include Jason Popp, International Vice President at GES; Anna Ratala, Main Organizer of SLUSH Singapore; Johanna Marsal, Senior Producer at Moment Factory; Caspar Mason, Creative Strategy Director of Jack Morton Worldwide; Tahira Endean, Author of Intentional Event Design; will be there at the Speakers’ Corner to address the ACE of M.I.C.E. audience.
- What are the attributes that make Istanbul a leading event destination?
Istanbul has a great potential to be the leading event destination in the global respect. First of all, it is perfectly located at the cross roads of the Europe, Asia and Africa. Istanbul offers access to a market of $24 trillion dollar with 1.5 billion people in 4 hours flight range. Secondly, it is an attraction point in terms of its history and culture. Thirdly, the quality of service in Istanbul for a MICE destination is top class.
- How would you describe your management style and approach towards fulfilling and exceeding expectations for such a popular event?
I strongly believe in teamwork. Every single person in our team knows the significance of this event and functions accordingly. We all know that we are not only working for ourselves, but we are also working to promote our country. Each and every year, we are preparing for an enormous operation and I do my best to keep my team motivated. I am proud to say that we’re organizing a high level event which keeps on improving itself. We closely follow the newest trends and innovations of global event industry and we apply them to our event every year. This is why; we always use the newest technology in our event, invite the best speakers of the world and discuss the hottest topics of the industry in our sessions during the exhibition.
- What is your vision for ACE of M.I.C.E. Turkey going forward? As the organizers, what is the strategy envisaged by Tourism Media Group?
ACE of M.I.C.E. will increase its international look in the short term. We designed a strategy for a substantial growth which is compatible with the future outlook of the country and its tourism potential as a MICE destination.