FESPA hosted its first virtual Global Summit on 20 - 21 January 2021, welcoming over 165 delegates from 36 countries. The Global Summit, an exclusive event funded by FESPA's Profit for Purpose programme, invited some of the world's leading printers to connect, learn and debate about the future of the speciality print industry.
The two-day summit, hosted by Pedro Jacques de Sousa, International Executive Director at Digital Graphics Group International, was a participative and interactive event featuring a comprehensive programme of presentations. To inspire the speciality print community to build stronger, more innovative businesses, FESPA was joined by print visionaries and marketing experts to discuss the key trends driving the industry forward.
Paddy Moran, owner of Neuro Coach Ireland opened the event, speaking about how, at a time when human connection has been minimised, it's essential to motivate, engage and communicate with employees. Anna Gapinska, owner of Think Customer and Tom Hawkins, Global Managing Director at GLIMMA then addressed evolving customer needs and why companies should approach business with a customer-first strategy. FESPA's Textile Ambassador, Debbie McKeegan was joined by Ross Haxton, Creative Brand Consultant at G Creative and Annette Taylor-Anderson, Creative Director at ATA Designs to discuss the décor market and the growth opportunities it presents.
On day two, sustainability consultant Clare Taylor, FESPA Vice President and CEO at ATC Christophe Aussenac, and Nathan Swinson-Bullough, Director of Imageco talked about how printers can sustainably rebuild their businesses after the pandemic. Following that, René de Heij, CEO of Probo NL and Erik Strik, CEO of Print Factory highlighted the trend towards web-to-print and e-commerce, and the importance of automation. Wrapping up the event, Rafael Pelote, Head of Marketing Intelligence at SONAE SIERRA and Massimo Volpe, co-founder of Retail Hub considered the changing marketing landscape from a brand perspective, explaining how touchpoints are shifting within the customer journey and how printers can adapt to the evolving demands of consumers.
Christian Duyckaerts, FESPA President comments: "The annual FESPA Global Summit was designed to support and motivate business leaders in our sector. This is now more important than ever, hence our decision to deliver the Global Summit in a virtual format for the first time. As always, the event delivered fascinating insights into the challenges our market is facing. These will help us to direct our Profit for Purpose investment in ways that give print businesses clear direction on how to stimulate their recovery and remain resilient."
Delegates responded enthusiastically to the Global Summit, describing the event in glowing terms: "very professional with great attention to detail", "full of valuable information", "engaging speakers and topics", "inspiring and very applicable to our business". Summit organiser Pedro Jacques de Sousa adds: "This year's virtual Global Summit was a great success! We were thrilled to be joined by a group of highly engaged speakers and guests who shared their knowledge and experiences throughout the two-day event. FESPA excelled in offering a programme of educational and insightful presentations and provided the perfect platform for knowledge sharing and networking opportunities."
Building on the hottest topics discussed during the Global Summit, FESPA members will be able to download an exclusive white paper summarising the key themes from the event, including print, décor, sustainability, automation, changing consumer behaviours, and engaging your team. The white paper will be available via the Club FESPA Online portal in March 2021. In addition, members can access Global Summit session recordings from 17th February.
To find out how to become a FESPA member to gain access to this content, in addition to an extensive library of educational and inspirational material from industry influencers, visit: www.fespa.com/become-a-member. Christian Duyckaerts concludes: "FESPA's core purpose is to educate, inspire, connect and expand the speciality print community. Events like the Global Summit, complemented by our continued research into growth applications and verticals, enable printers to make well-informed business development decisions for sustained long-term growth. We look forward to continued dialogue with our global speciality print community throughout 2021, and to helping business leaders to move forward from the exceptional challenges of the last year and embrace positive opportunities."