President's Message


On 8 April we all celebrated GMID – Global Meetings Industry Day.

Although last year, and indeed so far this year, proved to be by far the most challenging and difficult period we have experienced in our meetings industry, we have much to be proud of. Proud of the way we have been able to adjust and respond to the new norm; a new situation that has forced us to pivot events to the virtual, forced us to make difficult decisions whilst driving us to innovate, to be creative and to accelerate digital fulfilment.

During GMID, IAPCO released our annual data report collected from our members. The report indicated that our members had managed 38% less meetings during 2020 compared to 2019, however, the average number of participants only decreased by 6%. In other words, the average number of participants per event increased dramatically from 317 during 2019 to 478 during 2020. Virtual events presented an opportunity for associations and corporates to reach new audiences that were unable to travel to, and participate at, onsite.

Also, during GMID, IAPCO and BestCities Global Alliance released a very important white paper that will help associations better prepare for the future of events: Hybrid Congress Bid Guidelines.

The template, a result of collaboration and knowledge-sharing between IAPCO, our Ambassadors and BestCities Board Members, addresses crucial points for the hosting of virtual event components including consideration of destination selection, appropriate software choices for streaming, capturing content and security, facilitation of networking, the cost for attendees and promotion of the event.

As per this excellent example, our industry should continue working together to better prepare for the future of events and be proud of our achievements.  We have much to be proud of.



Ori Lahav
IAPCO President
VP Client & Operations, Kenes Group


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