IBTM World has launched its 2020 Event Business Accelerator (EBA), an investment and mentoring programme for event industry entrepreneurs. Back after a highly successful launch in 2019, the programme gives people with an idea, product or service related to the events industry the opportunity to participate in an intensive mentoring programme, culminating in a live pitch for funding to a panel of potential investors at IBTM World.
Selected finalists in the programme attend workshops, webinars and one-to-one sessions with a team of industry experts as they develop and scale their ideas and businesses ahead of a live pitch to a panel of judges at the trade show, which takes place in Barcelona from 1-3 December 2020.
Commenting on the EBA, past participant Bernadette Palombo, Founder, Event Professionals Journal, said: “We actually launched Event Professionals Journal at IBTM World 2019, so the event marked a major personal milestone for me. Being part of the EBA was invaluable in getting the product ready to launch. Having the opportunity to showcase it to so many people at IBTM World meant that sales really took off immediately – something that would have taken much longer if I hadn’t been part of the programme.”
This year’s mentors are Richard John, Chief Operating Officer of Realise, a specialist events services and training agency; Giorgia Sanfiori, Executive and Team Coach; Viona Terleth, a Business and Personal Development expert in the international MICE Industry; serial entrepreneur, Majbritt Sandberg and Ingrid Rip, a Certified Event Designer and Trainer.
The panel judging the live pitches includes Lori Pugh Marcum – Co-creator of the IBTM EBA and Head of Meeting Innovation for Meeting Professionals International; David Preston, CEO of Realise; Mark Riches, Advisor, NED and SME Investor and serial entrepreneur, author and keynote speaker Jason Allen Scott.
“Now, more than ever, it is essential that we support and nurture innovation in the industry, and this initiative aims to do this in a comprehensive and sustained way. It’s been fantastic to see last year’s finalists successfully grow their businesses over the past few months and we’re looking forward to supporting more new ideas and businesses through this year’s scheme,” said David Thompson, Event Director, IBTM World.
Applications for the Event Business Accelerator open on 1 July 2020 and will close on 31 August 2020. IBTM World is inviting submissions from entrepreneurs who have up to three years’ experience in running their own business related to the events industry, and those who have a bright idea for an events business, product or service.
To apply, simply complete the application form detailing your business proposition. The entries will be scored by a panel of industry judges, with finalists being selected and announced in mid-September. Complimentary travel and accommodation are provided for finalists, whose live pitches may secure financial investment for their business and/or mentorship at the discretion of members of the judging panel.