by Sean Ruck
, Contributing Editor | August 08, 2017
From the August 2017 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
In anticipation of the upcoming FIME conference, HealthCare Business News spoke to Exhibition Manager Gil Alejo about changes to the event taking place this year.
HCB News: FIME has been in Miami Beach for years. What prompted the move to Orlando?
Since the Miami Beach Convention Center is undergoing major refurbishments this year, we decided to move FIME to the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. We knew the quality of the event and quantity of visitors would not be compromised. The move has also meant an increase in the amount of space available from 275,000 square feet in 2016 in Miami, to 360,000 square feet in 2017 in Orlando. As a result, we were able to continue growing the show, welcoming an impressive 1,650-plus exhibitors from 40-plus countries, and attracting more that 22,000 medical and trade professionals from North, Central and South America, as well as the Caribbean and international markets.
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Furthermore, the move to Orlando has enabled us to launch a number of new accredited conferences, as well as other medical sectors within FIME. We are also still in close contact with the MBCC and are eagerly awaiting the new and improved venue to be completed.
HCB News: Is there any discussion about looking beyond Florida in the future?
FIME has been in Florida for the last 27 years and there are no plans to move. Our primary objective is just to improve, enhance and grow the event. The introduction of a strong educational element under Informa's motto of ”Exhibition with Education” is part of a long-term strategy to position FIME as a premier platform for medical education. We also aim to see an increase in attendees from both traditional and new target markets and for networking opportunities to be enhanced.
HCB News: FIME has always had a heavy international presence. Has there been any impact on attendance or concerns from attendees regarding travel to the U.S.?
We have not seen any impact in this respect. The key here is to make arrangements early through our comprehensive travel information services on our website for hotels, visa and travel arrangements. We have partnered with onPeak to provide visitors with the most competitive nightly hotel rates. There is the offer of a 10 percent discount on eligible fares through FIME’s official airline partner, Delta Airlines, as well as a 15 percent discount on transportation through Sixt Rent a Car. We also assist in providing visa invitation letters to our exhibitors and to attendees once they register their attendance.