Exhibitors, visitors and speakers have all agreed that the first Offsite Expo show was the offsite event that the construction industry has been waiting for.
Mark Farmer cut the ribbon and opened the event last week, welcoming construction professionals from across the UK and beyond to the official launch of the inaugural Offsite Expo at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry.
The highly focused two-day exhibition featured 40 hours of CPD Accredited Masterclass Seminars, an International Offsite Summit and the Offsite Connect Buyers and Specifiers Forum, which led to the exhibition being a total sell-out.
Offsite Expo was developed as a platform to network and create new business opportunities and at the heart of the event, the Offsite Connect Buyers and Specifiers Forum, which was open exclusively to exhibitors, was a hive of activity.
Overall, 100 buyers and specifiers registered to participate, including representatives from Mace, Willmott Dixon, Kier, Balfour Beatty, Galliford Try, NHS and Apex Airspace. Plus, 320 business meetings were scheduled with buyers and exhibitors via the online diary system and of those over 300 actual meetings took place and feedback from both the buyers and exhibitors has been tremendous.
Participating buyer, Simon Stone, Supply Chain Manager for Galliford Try commented on the event: “The format worked really well and enabled me to get the most out of the event. I look forward to participating in further events”
But Offsite Expo was not only about securing business opportunities – the conference and exhibition was developed to inform and inspire through knowledge exchange and opinion sharing. Getting to grips with the latest international offsite methods and smart digital technologies was high on the agenda – the Offsite Construction Summit provided a dynamic and interactive experience focusing on international offsite best practice. Sharing and transferring knowledge was the prime objective for the Summit and the stellar speaker line-up presented some incredible developments across the global offsite supply-chain.
One of the curators of the event, leading offsite expert from Cogent Consulting, Darren Richards said: “The offsite arena is an exciting place to be. The levels of investment and confidence in the long-term viability of advanced offsite methods of construction, is greater than previously witnessed. The heightened interest in all things offsite was clearly demonstrated at the event. Facilitating knowledge transfer and promoting innovation in the sector, Offsite Expo has been extremely well received.”
Over 80 speakers offered delegates the opportunity to hear from experts offering in-depth analysis and technical know-how in an extensive range of CPD Accredited Offsite Masterclasses. Presented by a host of UK pioneers in two dedicated custom-built offsite technology theatres, the Masterclasses focused on the latest innovations.
Julie Williams, Event Director for Offsite Expo, explained: “The response has been truly astounding and already, just days after the event, we have 68 exhibitor bookings for 2020 – 53 re-bookings and 15 new companies looking to promote offsite technologies and services at our next Offsite Expo.”
Plans are already underway for the next event taking place on 22 – 23 September 2020 at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry. The exhibition will again feature informative speaker content but new for 2020 will include ‘live’ feature builds, machinery demonstrations and by considerable demand – Technical Guided Tours hosted by offsite experts from Cogent Consulting.
In addition, Offsite Expo 2020 will host the dynamic and innovative Offsite Construction Awards. This move will give the team behind the Awards room to expand the event, after a high demand for tickets last year saw many people losing out on attending the big night.
The Awards will be keeping to the tradition of previous years; however, it is not only the venue that is changing with two new categories the Offsite Awards is expanding its reach and reflecting the wider adoption of offsite technology. These new categories include Building Performance Pioneer Award which focuses on the importance of energy efficiency post build; and International Offsite Project of the Year Award – opening the Awards to international entries. The deadline for submissions is the 15 May 2020 with the finalists being announced ahead of the Award ceremony at Offsite Expo on the 22 September 2020.
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