The Association of African Exhibition Organisers (AAXO) on Thursday hosted the inaugural Roar Organiser and Exhibitor Awards – a glamorous opportunity for the industry to unite like never before.
More than 330 guests attended the glittering event – a record for the industry.
Exhibitors, organisers, suppliers, the media and industry champions joined the team of judges to celebrate the successes of the industry in 2016.
The event at the Ticketpro Dome also gave AAXO members the opportunity to network with award winners.
For the first time in South Africa, exhibitors were included in the industry awards as entries were accepted in two sections – one for exhibitors and the other for exhibition organisers.
Chairperson of AAXO, Carol Weaving said including exhibitors in these awards “was a focus for AAXO”.
For the best exhibitor awards, entries were accepted in five categories: trade exhibition, trade and consumer exhibition, consumer exhibition, confex and table top exhibition.
Exhibitors and exhibition organisers competed for 16 awards.
A record 40 entries were submitted and the winners included Concept G and Compex @Africa Rail.
Explaining how tough the exhibition industry is, Andrew Gibbs, leader of Concept G, said: “The industry is very time-consuming, difficult and comes with tight deadline.
“For one to succeed in the industry, one needs to have endurance and tenacity and be persistent is seeing things through.”
To ensure that judging took place to the highest standards, given the broad range of categories, AAXO required a unique, talented and highly experienced group of professionals from within the exhibitions, communication and marketing industry.
“It drives home the fact that the South African exhibitions industry can truly compete on an international stage,” Martin Hiller, one of the judges, said.
Weaving added: “AAXO was created to bring quality, credibility and professionalism to the exhibition industry.”