It’s exhibition geek time.

The turning of the year is when I pick out exhibitions that will be catching my eye in 2017.

In fairness, last year’s pick was pretty good but I was spoilt for choice.

Top of the tree was Money 20/20 Europe which took place at the Bella Center in Copenhagen that was massively successful but so were others I picked like Automechanika Birmingham. Admittedly there were some howlers and one that didn’t even take place (Gamer Mania) – you win some, you lose some.

This list is/was never about predicting success or failure– just exhibitions (primarily launchers) and sectors that interest me and might interest you.

So what does 2017 hold for the exhibition geeks?

This list in no particular order (other than alphabetical) and if you think that I’ve missed a show that you think will be special in 2017…drop your thoughts below.


KinderWunsch Tage


Date: 18-19 February

Venue: MOA, Berlin

Organiser: F2F Events

Website: kinderwunsch-tage.de

This event by F2F Events has been on the cards for several years and 2017 sees the launch of their version of The Fertility Show in Berlin.

Unlike the UK, there are considerable German legal restrictions in this type of consumer-medical launch but fair play to F2F – they’ve turned it around. This is the pure definition of what I would call – a boutique exhibition. High worth exhibitors with each lead worth thousands. A pure consumer transaction event. Love it.


London Muslim Lifestyle Show

Date: 15-16 AprilLondon Muslim Lifestyle Show

Venue: Olympia, London

Organiser: Algebra Consulting

Website: www.muslimlifestyleshow.com


The London Muslim Lifestyle Show launched last year and was received by more than 19,000 visitors and 138 exhibitors – not a bad start, not a bad start at all. The team behind this launch, Algebra Consulting, are also behind London (Modest) Fashion Week and London Islamic Art Fair. Both of which hold massive potential.

This is an example of a booming consumer event tapping a rich vein. It’s a massive market in the UK and certainly under represented in the world of large scale exhibitions so good luck to them but I don’t think they need it.


Mindful Living Show

Mindful Living ShowDate: 2-3 June

Venue: Business Design Centre, London

Organiser: Pep Farley

Website: mindfullivingshow.com

An inaugural launch show by organisers Pep Farley.  A lot of events claim to be lifestyle shows but this one really is, like, literally a lifestyle show.

Mindfulness is a meditative practice that has its roots in Buddhism and is big, big business. Offices, schools, community centres, governments and probably a few exhibition organisers are offering mindfulness sessions. I’m surprised this hasn’t launched before but may have been swallowed up in the yoga genre. I wish them well – that’s my karma sorted!

PrintWeek Live


Date: 8-9 March

Venue: Wasps Arena, Coventry

Organiser: MA Exhibitions

Website: printweeklive.com

Given that my old man was a lithographic planner and platemaker I have always been fascinated by the printing-exhibition dynamic – I realise how sad this sounds.

IPEX is returning with a refreshed brand and a UK focus but it’s the launch of PrintWeek Live by (on the boil) MA Exhibitions that really interests me. They have stakeholder backing and goodwill with the industry which is always a good start. The Midlands looks stacked with print events this year. This playground is going down to Darwin.


Shoptalk Europe


Date: 9-11 Oct

Venue: Bella Center, Copenhagen

Organiser: Shoptalk Europe Ltd.

Website: shoptalkeurope.com

This is a European launch of a very successful US event. It is run by the same guys who created Money 20/20 so it’s no surprise that it’ll be co-located with its European sister.

Shoptalk is a next generation commerce event which looks at the technological impact on retail and e-commerce sectors. I love the proposition, I love the branding and the way the event is built.

Smarter Business Live

smarter-business-liveDate: 15-16 November

Venue: Manchester Central, Manchester

Organiser: UK Industry Events Ltd

Website: smarterbusinesslive.com

The team that sold the Advanced Engineering shows to Easyfairs back in 2015 have put down the champagne flutes, parked up their yachts and launched this slick, three-in-one smart business show in Manchester Central.

Business shows are notoriously difficult to launch but the focus on SME and start-ups is a solid sector in today’s post Brexit world. It seems like a more mainstream version than Business Rocks which also takes place at the same venue.


The AI Summit London


Date: 9-10 May

Venue: Business Design Centre, London

Organiser: Futurum Media

Website: theaisummit.com

Several big organisers are lining up AI launches including knect365 and Clarion but this one has been up and running for a few years and has the backing of giants like Google, IBM, Amazon and Microsoft which helps, I guess. Painful website but I’m prepared to overlook that.

2017 will be interesting for AI and exhibitions so expect to see the usual slew of goldrush exhibitions which VR saw this year. I’ll be opening a book to see who nails it and who fails it.

This Morning Live


Date: 18-21 May

Venue: NEC, Birmingham

Organiser: Media 10

Website: thismorninglive.co.uk

When it comes to TV brands stepping into the exhibition industry it is a mixed bag. Media 10 have decided to pick up the Schofield/Willoughby juggernaut and take it to the NEC.

It’s a big task but given they run the most successful TV extension in Grand Designs Live if anyone can make it work, it’s them. It will be interesting to see how it plays out and more importantly how it will stand out from the existing Media 10 portfolio.


Virtual Reality Show

Date: 20-22 April

Virtual Reality ShowVenue: Business Design Centre, London

Organiser: VR Shows

Website: virtualrealityshow.co.uk

Hang on….I know it’s VR but my spidey senses are tingling.

I’m getting too old to be seduced by a website however the team behind Virtual Reality Show have built a beauty. It appears to be a prosumer show with a paid gate (brave move) and the content has been tailored to sectors.

Unlike the 76 VR exhibitions (I am exaggerating) that launched in the UK in 2016 this organiser team seem hell bent on being different to the others…which incidentally have been embarrassments to the exhibition industry (I am not exaggerating).



Subscribe Newsletter

Exhibitor Smarts is a specialist exhibitor agency working alongside organisers and suppliers to maximise exhibitor revenue and performance.

We also work directly with exhibitors saving more than 30% off their investments.

Email: jim@exhibitorsmarts.com

Recommended Posts

Leave a Comment


I want the latest news and trends from Exhibitor Smarts

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt
Zero Lead VisitorExhibition Jam