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March 2, 2020

Cancelled or Postponed – Trade Fairs hit by Coronavirus Outbreak

London, UK – 02 March 2020 – MIPIM is the latest trade show to fall victim to the global outbreak of coronavirus. The property event in Cannes was due to be held between March 10th – 13th. It’s now been postponed until early June. The organisers, Reed MIDEM, says the well-being of the clients and staff is its priority.

Geneva Auto Salon
Geneva Auto Salon

In a press statement, Reed MIDEM’s CEO, Paul Zilk, said: “This is not a decision we have taken lightly. We believe these new dates will provide the international MIPIM community with the opportunity to achieve their business objective.”

The decision follows the cancellation of the Geneva International Motor Show, the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and the postponement of Berlin’s International Hospitality Investment Forum and Milan Design Week.

Automotive

The next big automotive fair on the circuit is New York International Auto Show which is due in April. However, the cancellation of the Geneva show has raised questions about the viability of motor shows. Alternatives methods of unveiling new models, such as livestreaming or small, bespoke press events, may now seem more appealing to the car manufacturers.

Culture and entertainment

If you want to know what TV shows will be airing next year, then MIPTV in Cannes is the place to go. This trade show for the content industry is also run by Reed MIDEM and is due to kick off on 30th March. MIPTV and the London Book Fair, which is also in March, look particularly vulnerable.

Sport

Rugby’s  Six Nations tournament has already been affected by the virus outbreak. The Italy versus Ireland game was cancelled and now there are doubts over a number of the remaining games. Long-term, the two biggest sporting events of the year take place this summer. The Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are due in July and August. The Uefa European Championships are football’s big summer event. It’s due to kick-off in Rome on June 12th.

Of course, the cancellation of trade shows and major sporting and cultural events hit not just the organisers but local businesses, caterers and travel companies. As governments around the world take emergency measure to try and control the crisis, it’s likely that large public gatherings will be banned. As an end result, we can expect more events to get cancelled.

We can also expect a raft of clever and creative ways to launch and showcase new products and services. A virtual motor show anyone?

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