ICE London 2019 was a total success for Clarion Gaming! We are also pleased to offer you this year a very interesting interview with Kate Chambers, Managing Director, which will give you a great deal of insight into what was the last edition of ICE, but at the same time we keep you up to date with the latest trends of global gambling.
How was ICE Totally Gaming 2019 for Clarion Events team? You are satisfied about the results?
We can look at ICE London from a team perspective and reflect on those aspects that went well and those where perhaps we should have performed better. These are professional insights and while it’s important to ensure that we consistently deliver the best event possible, it’s not our analysis that’s relevant, it’s our customers opinion that counts. Each year we conduct an extensive programme of research and benchmarking among both visitors to ICE London and exhibitors. We do this for a number of reasons: firstly it enables the team to measure performance against previous years, secondly it means that we can identify those gaps in the service which in turn means that we can put things right and improve the customer experience. The research programme is taking place currently and it’s these results and outcomes that really matter most. From my personal perspective what I saw at ICE London was a busy, exciting and vibrant business event with exhibitors delivering the most professional shop window on the international gaming industry.
How many visitors was this year? But exhibitors? How many square meters was covered by the exihibition? How many meters in plus was covered by comparison with the precedent ICE? Please, details all the informations you have, especially those comparative between 2019 vs 2018.
We are very cautious about releasing attendance figures prior to submitting them for independent audit, but, all of the early indicators are positive. In terms of exhibitors, ICE London attracted 612 exhibitor brands compared to the 2018 figure of 589. In 2019, exhibitors travelled from 67 nations (65 in 2018). ICE London 2019 occupied 47,500sqm of net floor space compared to 43,500sqm in 2018. Overall, ICE London 2019 was more than twice the size of ICE London 2012 (22,500sqm). All of the metrics are very positive.
What was the most important plus at ICE 2019 comparative with other ICE exhibitions?
I was pleased that the Code of Conduct we introduced in partnership with the industry was adhered to. We worked very hard to ensure that ICE London reflected the core credentials of what is a socially responsible and responsive industry. ICE VOX and the learning programme in general was also very successful and an important part of what has become known as ICE London Week. A large number of international regulators made the journey to London and played a full and active role in the exhibition. Another highlight was the Consumer Protection Zone (CPZ) which we introduced to the show floor in 2018. The CPZ was a central focus for the debate surrounding responsible gambling. It examined the Responsible Player Journey, starting from game idea to design, through gameplay monitoring, interaction, intervention and, ultimately, to self-exclusion and blocking. The agenda was curated to showcase how technology can improve consumer protection tools and involved policy-makers and regulators as part of the networking session for International Legislators. CPZ exhibitors included YGAM, Gamblewise, GamCare, Gordon Moody, IBAS, the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling (IGRG), Little Wheel, Mindway AI and Sustainable Interactive, with Clarion Gaming hosting charities and non-profit organisations on a complimentary basis.
How received the exhibitors/participants the ICE Graphics Amnesty 2019 concept?
The issue of single-use plastics and their impact on the environment is one which is close to my heart. Ecobooth, which is the world’s first genuinely zero waste events production company, collected the most common event stand waste materials from the show floor, which is being recycled into a sheet material and used to make outdoor furniture for the communal spaces surrounding ExCeL London. This was a small step, but an important one – and I’m delighted that ICE London was the first event to partner with Ecobooth in this way.
What was more this year ICE Totally Gaming: a place to exhibit, a place where to do networking or a place to learn more about gambling?
Due to the fantastic support that we receive from our international community of exhibitors ICE London has grown to be what many observers regard as the most significant event on the gaming industry calendar. When that happens events quickly transition to become event brands and build their own momentum, each year adding new layers of energy and intrigue. The result is that ICE London now fulfils a host of requirements – it has become the place to launch new products, the place to learn, the place to network, the place to meet old friends, the place to source new suppliers and much, much more. It’s now a holistic event which serves the entire needs of the international industry.
What sectors had the most important grow this year at ICE 2019?
The 2019 edition of ICE London occupied more floor space than ever before a factor that’s due to a mixture of organic growth among existing exhibitors and the addition of new companies to the show floor. In 2017/18, the growth we experienced was due to the demand for space from payments providers, whereas the 2019 growth has, in part, been driven by Sportsbook and iGaming companies following the Supreme Court’s repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). As the most international gaming event on the calendar, exhibitors know that they can use ICE London as a method of launching into any gaming jurisdiction in the world which is why they attend in such numbers.
In years to come the mobile and online gambling industry will grow. How ICE will respond to that? What about fantasy sports, could be a sector for ICE 2020? We can expect to see more VR (virtual reality) games next years at the exhibition?
ICE London serves as a barometer for everything that’s taking place in the world of international gaming across every single vertical. When visitors attend ICE London they see every new trend and development. The straightforward answer to your question is that ICE reflects the dynamics of the market. Whatever happens in gaming will be reflected by the exhibitors attending ICE London and by the thought leaders participating in ICE VOX.
What are the further plans for Clarion Events for this year, and for the other hand for ICE Totally Gaming in 2020?
The success of ICE London has enabled us to take the ICE brand outside of the UK for the first time. In 2018, we launched ICE Africa and ICE Sports Betting USA, which subsequently transitioned to ICE North America and which is being held in Boston MA, across May 13 –15. ICE North America will serve as a stakeholder meeting place and provide the opportunity for brands to establish a competitive advantage in what is a tremendously dynamic market filled with opportunities and cross collaboration across all our five key areas of focus. ICE is recognized as being the most respected event brand in the gaming space and has all of the necessary credentials and energy to be at the heart of the development of the industry in North America. Building on top of the incredible foundations laid by ICE Sports Betting USA and GiGse before it, we want to continue driving a dynamic approach to our events in the US, ensuring the speakers in Boston bring unique insight from both inside and outside of the gaming industry. ICE North America will provide a platform for companies to showcase their brands and connect with the best of the best from the multiverse of sports betting and interactive gaming. Using our Ampersand Group, which is the biggest think tank in the industry with more than 1,000 members, we keep in close contact with our stakeholders to shape our conferences to reflect the changing landscapes of the various sectors that we serve. It has taken many years to get to where we are now, but last summer the implementation bill was passed in Japan and the pathway for three initial integrated resort licenses was voted into law, making this year’s JgC arguably the most pivotal gathering since its’ inception. As Latin markets continue to expand, and with the predicted regulation of sports betting in Brazil, LatAm’s largest market, it makes it ever more important for us to serve our markets with seminal events such as BgC and Juegos Miami.