Sonia Prashar, Managing Director and Chairperson of the Board NuernbergMesse India President, Indian Exhibition Industry Association

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ES. The Indian event and exhibition market was valued at US$ 3,674.95 million in 2022, and is expected to reach US$ 7,550.05 million by 2027, registering a CAGR of 12.43% during the forecast period of 2022-2027. In this backdrop how do you see India shaping up as an important global destination for exhibitions and events industry?

Sonia Prashar. India holds tremendous potential to emerge as the most important global destination for exhibitions and events Industry in the coming decade. We are today positioning ourselves very favourably vis a vis our manufacturing capabilities after the stupendous success in the IT – Services sector. Our role within the context of the global supply chain and also as one of the fastest growing lucrative economies of the  world is emerging out even stronger. The investments made towards creating world class infrastructure in the Exhibitions Industry coupled with development of Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities offers excellent opportunities for the exhibition sector to expand in all aspects. Today we can offer world class venues for hosting exhibitions and also a robust market for international companies looking at investing in the country.

During the course of its G20 Presidency, India will be holding about 200 meetings in 32 different sectors in multiple locations across India. Additionally, the pandemic has definitely accelerated the digital adoption in the country, bringing it on par with some of the most developed nations of the world. This in turn has led to the application of latest technologies across services and a seamless integration of various touch points within the exhibition lifecycle, thus improving the overall user experience.

Global companies have been looking at India with renewed interest, they want to eliminate dependency on just one source or one country and India definitely has much to offer – talent, resources, favourable policies, market and most importantly an insatiable hunger for growth and development.

ES. As a key stakeholder of the events and exhibition fraternity, how do you look at the contribution of IEIA Open Seminar in terms of creating more opportunities and serving as a platform to bring together like minded people?

Sonia Prashar. IEIA Open Seminar is a great platform for the Industry to convene, collaborate and create change. By bringing all stakeholders together on a common platform, we are creating a forum which fosters camaraderie and conversations.

Our theme this year is “Focus India” – The Cynosure of the Global Exhibition Industry. This year the discussions and narrative will focus on the Indian growth story and the tremendous resilience we have shown as an Industry to bounce back stronger. Exhibition Industry has withstood the challenges of war, recessions, global pandemics, but has still maintained its vital position as the most effective platform to network, generate business and observe trends. Through our seminar we aim to create conversations which in turn create value and change – be it best industry practices, further enhancement of our offerings, promoting diversity and inclusion, and most importantly promoting and positioning India as the most preferred exhibition destination. Key stakeholders from leading organisations will come together in December to bring forth their perspectives, ideas and energy to propel our growth story.

“It is the only event which brings the entire ecosystem on a common platform – an initiative by the Industry, of the Industry, for the Industry. The pandemic did manage to create disruption and chaos and therefore it becomes all the more imperative to work jointly towards the common goal of creating businesses rooted in ethics and good value systems. With a shared vision and with an appreciation of each other’s strengths, the Industry can truly create a strong impact, with integrity and solidarity.”