major event hosts and the ‘new normal’
During the 2020 IAEH AGM, held virtually on 8th July, members discussed how the 'new normal' is going to look like for major event hosts.
The discussions happened in 5 breakout rooms moderated by IAEH directors. The conversations were around how members expect the processes of bidding for and hosting major events to change after the pandemic. The IAEH offered members the opportunity to speak and share insights aiming to understand how the Association can help members address the challenges imposed by COVID-19 in the short-term future.
The key points below summarise the discussions.
→ Focus on domestic events
Members see a change in focus towards building the industry with local, domestic/national before moving to regional/international events. In addition to that, members also see value in promoting hybrid events in the short-term future to be able to engage international audiences.
→ Sharing financial risk
Members expect a movement towards a more equal approach to sharing the financial risk between rights holders and host destinations. There is also a need to review the current contracts which may reflect in the way these contracts will be made in the future.
→ Bespoke approach
It is necessary to take a bespoke approach to events and conduct case-by-case analysis in order to find the right applicable solution to COVID-19 imposed challenges for each specific event.
→ Protect what you have
When it comes to bidding and hosting, members are focused on events they have already committed to host and on delivering those events in the best way possible considering the current restrictions – “It’s all about protecting what you have”.
→ Percentage budget cut
The percentage cut in members budget for the following 12 months varies between 0 and 65%. Some members reported that there may be an increase in budget to help comply with new COVID-19 imposed regulations and stimulate economic recovery.
→ Milestone payments
Members see milestone payment systems as a potential solution to dealing with bidding and hosting fees moving forward.
→ Information sharing is key
Members are highly interested in training, information sharing and interaction with other IAEH members, especially on ‘new normal functioning’ e.g. best practice on health protocols for events and digital event impact measurement.
→ Shift in priorities
Residents’ sentiments and community value are rising up in members’ priorities when bidding for and hosting an event.