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June 1, 2008

Record start for EMS shows strength of mobile events sector

Marketing roadshow specialist Event Marketing Solutions (EMS) has secured £5.4 million of new business since January, the best ever start to a year since the company launched in 2000, with 2008 looking set to be its most successful year to date.

This figure has been swelled by a recently secured £3 million contract to operate the Aimhigher roadshow for the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS). The event is a key element of the national Aimhigher programme to encourage more young people to pursue higher education. Since its launch in 2001, it has reached more than 661,500 young people.

The three-year project was awarded to EMS following a five-way pitch to the Central Office of Information. It means that after seven years working as a major supplier on the roadshow, EMS will now become the lead agency – co-ordinating the work of several partners and managing the logistically intense programme, believed to be the largest vehicle-based tour in Europe.

The 2008/2009 tour will use a fleet of five, custom-built 'pathfinder' mobile exhibition vehicles, which will be completely re-branded and fitted out with a new on-board experience.

"To win such a prestigious contract against stiff national competition is a milestone for our business and confirms our leading role in this niche service area,” said EMS account director Justin Isles. "We are delighted to continue our relationship with the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills and look forward to taking these important messages out to thousands more young people in the years to come."

Other new contracts include a £500,000 project – as yet undisclosed – to manage a major internal communications roadshow for a national brand, plus a series of health awareness roadshows, including a new campaign for the British Heart Foundation.

Incredibly, this success has been achieved despite the gloomy economic predictions associated with the credit crunch.

"Despite marketing budgets coming under increasing pressure, we look set to deliver a record year in 2008,” said EMS managing director Keith Austin. "In a climate where conventional advertising campaigns are being squeezed, face-to-face activity offers a high-profile and cost-effective alternative – and in many cases a far better way of reaching very specific target audiences. These results confirm EMS's position as the UK's leading provider of vehicle-based roadshow campaigns."

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