Our story

From a conversation in the back of a cab to a company with global reach spanning two continents, we’ve come a long way on our mission to unite and advance the meetings industry – and we’re still forging ahead.

We launched the IMEX concept in September 2001, opening our first show in April 2003 in Frankfurt, moved into Messe Frankfurt’s largest hall in 2005 and opened IMEX America in Las Vegas in October 2011.

Our unique hosted buyer programme, online appointment system, business-first ethos and partnership approach set us apart from the start. Our vision of a world where good business transcends borders and where global meeting planners and suppliers can easily connect, has driven us forwards.

Our aim has always been to be more than an exhibition organiser. We’ve placed ourselves at the heart of the meetings industry, and designed our shows to help you learn, connect and do business. Initiatives that have been with us from launch include our awards programme, Association Day, the Future Leaders and Policy (formerly Politicians) Forums – now joined by Smart Monday in America and EduMonday in Frankfurt.

Our education programme has grown from 30 seminars at our first show to 200-plus at each show today. We’ve worked alongside our partners to develop our events – and in turn they’ve brought their own events to our shows, from SITE Nite and MPI Rendezvous to annual ICCA member meetings. We continue to refine our event line up as our industry changes and grows.

Our industry may have changed over the last decade or so, but what hasn’t changed is people’s desire to come together. Strong personal relationships within our industry are central to the success of our shows. And although we’ve more than quadrupled the size of our staff, most of the original pioneers are still part of our team, our IMEX family.

IMEX set the stakes really high… we all expected great things… we got them.

Linda Pereira, Executive Director (after IMEX 2003)

CPL Events Portugal