Industry associations announce major research initiative.


Industry associations announce major research initiative.

31 Mar 2015

The Association of Event Organisers (AEO), Association of Event Venues (AEV) and the Event Supplier and Services Association (ESSA) have today released details of a major 3-year research study into the UK exhibitions and live events sector. Known as SASiE (size and scale index for events), the research programme is designed to measure the overall volume and dimensions of the sector and, in years two and three, provide benchmarking and quality metrics for all their members. SASiE will also make future projections for the sector.

Data will be collected on a regular basis from event organisers and event venues on their major trade shows (B2B and B2C), conference-related exhibitions, live music events and outdoor events, via a purpose-designed online questionnaire.

Registration and ticketing companies and audit bureaux are also expected to contribute to the research programme. Participation is not restricted to members of the three trade bodies, as non-members are also being invited to contribute.

Results will be published in an annual report, while all participating companies (organisers and venues) will receive quarterly personalised summaries, enabling them to benchmark their performance against competitors.

The research project is being led by the AEV and will be developed and managed by specialist consultants Tony Rogers Conference & Event Services and RJS Associates, both of which have many years’ experience in the business events sector.

Nick Marshall, executive chairman of Global Experience Specialists (GES) and ESSA research champion welcomed the announcement saying “SASiE is the culmination of a focused cross association effort to gain a deeper and more detailed understanding of our industry, and is unprecedented in terms of scale and scope. The importance of reliable, comprehensive data collection and analysis to our industry cannot be overestimated, and I'm confident that SASiE will provide our members with the vital industry insight we all need.”

Commenting on SASiE, Paul Byrom, managing director of Upper Street Events and AEO research champion, said, ‘We have recognised for some time that there are substantial gaps in our market intelligence, not least in understanding the overall size of the market and the percentage share represented by AEO members. We are delighted to see the commissioning of this new research and are confident that it will provide the information and insights that the industry and our members require.’

Nigel Nathan, managing director for Olympia London, and AEV research champion, said: ‘Our members require robust data on the events sector to benchmark their performance, to understand the opportunities for growth and to identify future and emerging trends. We have designed SASiE to fulfil all of these objectives.’



  • "Great day hosting our first AEV working group event!..WOW did I learn a lot and some great insights into how other venues work and the challenges they are trying to overcome. If you are a venue looking to network with other like minded professionals I would recommend looking at joining the AEV".
    Danielle Worker
    Corporate Events Team Leader, Silverstone Circuits Ltd
  • "“Great essential for a successful venue. The AEV provides a platform to establish consistent best practice in this field"
    Phil Wetz
    Retail & Catering Manager, ExCeL London
  • “The AEV provides collective representation for its member venues, turning individual commitment into a group effort"
    Paul Brough
    Venue Health & Safety Manager, Olympia London
  • "Proud to be part of this Cross Association discussion. I am confident in our ability to improve and progress our working platform through conversation".
    Amir Vered
    Head of eForce and IT, Olympia London (Chair of Cross Association Technology WG)
  • “The AEV is essential to the venue sector’s ability to cooperate and collaborate"
    Jazmin Beale
    Head of Marketing & Communications, Olympia London
  • “The AEV undertakes crucial work on behalf of event venues up and down the country to ensure our voice is heard. They reinforce the important role our sector plays in delivering economic impact, increasing trade, providing jobs and driving the visitor economy.”
    Lucy Merritt
    Head of Marketing and Communications, ExCeL London
  • AEV Membership is a key part of our business strategy; it has and will continue to be a core elements of our plan to support knowledge sharing in the industry and to develop both our team and the venue.
    Kate Vandenburg
    Marketing Director - Business Design Centre
  • Our team at ACC Liverpool feel indebted to the substantial work that the AEV do for our amazing industry. As the pillar association for venues across the country it’s a real privilege for our teams to participate in many of the working groups, learning and contributing to new processes which helps drive our industry forward on a national scale.
    Colm Graham
    Senior Exhibition Account Manager, ACC Liverpool
  • We have benefited hugely from all of the insight, discussion, events and networking, but it has also meant that we have been able to give back to the industry by sharing our unique experiences and professional knowledge and allowing our employees to help lead and shape the Association from the inside.
    Mathew James
    Head of Brand, Telford International Centre
  • “The AEV has been an invaluable asset to us as a company and the wider industry, helping to lobby on the industries behalf, consolidating and distributing information and facilitating vital knowledge sharing.”
    Charlie Hodgson
    Managing Director at The Kia Oval