As the 30th edition of the three-day AIME draws to a close this evening, organiser Talk2 Media & Events expects this year’s incentive travel and meetings tradeshow in Melbourne will far exceed last year’s business transaction value.
Silke Calder, AIME event director, told TTGmice: “Last year, as the first business event in the city after its reopening in 2022, AIME had A$120 million (US$83.8 million) transacted on the showfloor. Based on the success AIME had last year, when it was a much smaller show – five bays then and seven bays now plus so many more buyers – I’d like to think transactions this year would double.”
Talk2 Media & Events said AIME 2023 is attended by more than 350 exhibitors from over 25 countries, and 400 hosted buyers. More than 13,000 meetings are also scheduled over two days.
Calder said interactions on the first day with sellers showed that they “are generally happy with the quality of buyers and the potential of business to be placed”.
“The buzz is truly great,” she remarked, adding that AIME 2023’s mental health-focused Knowledge Program “drew a lot of positive feedback” while the Welcome Event at Marvel Stadium to celebrate AIME’s 30th anniversary “was also super”. Both events were held on February 13.
The Welcome Event, produced by Peter Jones Special Events, featured entertainment that paid homage to AIME’s legacy. DJs spun music dating back to 1993, when AIME was birthed, luring attendees to the dance floor.
The highlight of the evening was the joint effort of all attendees to form the numerals three and zero on the greens of Marvel Stadium for a photo shoot.
“That was my favourite moment,” reflected Calder. “It was truly “My AIME 30 Moment”, as the party was themed.”
Despite staying long past the official end of the party, delegates flocked to the showfloor on time the next morning for their first day of scheduled meetings.
“It just shows how keen everyone was to get started on business meetings,” said Calder.
Other special features this year include indigenous elements throughout the event, such as lanyards designed by First Nation creative agency Little Rocket; a first-ever Buyers Lounge sponsorship by Accor; a wellness café where delegates can rest, recharge and check their health; and an expanded showcase of smaller event suppliers.
Beyond securing meetings and contributing economic value to the state, AIME owner Melbourne Convention Bureau’s CEO Julia Swanson said the event also leaves behind a legacy created by connections made through business events.
“Great minds and innovators converge on Melbourne, and that results in exciting developments and new solutions,” said Swanson.