RegencyExpo| International Exhibitions agency 

The Meetings Mean Business Coalition had a busy 2016 advocating to prove the value of the meetings industry, and 2017 looks to be even busier, as MMB continues to push existing initiatives forward and launch new ones.

“Meetings Mean Business continues to grow as a coalition, attracting new supporters and elevating the industry,” said Richard Harper, MMB co-chair and HelmsBriscoe executive vice president.

It was retail as far as the eye could see inside Jan. 15-17 the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) opened its doors to 35,000 industry members for the 2017 Retail BIG Show. This year, well-known figures in fashion and retail, including ABC “Shark Tank’s” Daymond John, NBA Basketball Player Kobe Bryant and Astronaut Captain Scott Kelly.

The show caters its content to large brands, as well as small businesses and covers all areas of retail needs from operations to technology to marketing. 

Three years after Nashville’s Music City Center was built, the local Convention Center Authority just approved to expand the venue.

The center now has a $19.9 million construction budget to build a new food and beverage outlet and expand the Exhibit Hall and Davidson Ballroom concourse space.

A group of veteran industry professionals has launched a consultancy company – the Event Advisory Group – designed to help associations, trade show organizers, publishers and corporations improve the financial, brand and operational performance of their events.

Formed in early 2016 and officially launched six weeks ago, EAG features an executive team of five seasoned event professionals, who boast 120 collective years of event management, marketing and operational experience and a comprehensive knowledge of producing and launching events ranging from large global trade shows to small conferences and corporate meetings.

UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry has decided to expand its events accreditation scheme.

Beginning this year, quality exhibitions and events that focus on national audiences also will be able to apply for, and receive, UFI’s unique recognition – “UFI Approved Event” - opening up the industry’s gold standard to audited national quality shows.

Until recently, UFI approval was reserved for exhibitions that meet the highest global standards, provide officially audited statistics and