Innovation and evolving consumer behaviours will continue to shape SPORTEL, according to Laurent Puons, the CEO of the industry’s long-established sports media industry gathering.
SPORTEL, which has helped to set the agenda for the sector since its inaugural edition in 1990, has faced increasing competition on the exhibitions and conferences circuit over recent years.
However, as it prepares for SPORTELMonaco from October 21-23, there remains a clear commitment in terms of tailoring the offering to stay as relevant as possible for industry delegates.
“Year on year, SPORTEL is dedicated to being the champion convention for the international sports media and technology industry,” Puons says. “We listen to our community and evolve with the changing needs the industry.
“Every SPORTEL is different and this is because every year our community evolves. We have new companies and different participants at each convention, which makes every SPORTEL a great opportunity to do business.
“There is no doubt that the industry is ever-changing, and SPORTELMonaco is a great indicator of this. Across almost all markets and sectors, competition is fierce, and it is clear that innovation and consumer behaviour are driving the evolution.”
One area of growing interest for SPORTEL and its delegates is technology, with an ever-greater focus on innovations that can enhance the fan experience.
However, Puons insists that the media rights marketplace is “still at the heart of our SPORTEL community and will remain so”.
He adds: “SPORTELMonaco is the world’s leading trade floor to maximise your return on time and return on investment in regard to trading sports media rights.
“In addition to this, SPORTEL is also the place to be to acquire sports technology to drive fan engagement, maximise reach, best understand how to monetise your data and much more.
“This has been a growing trend for many years and is now a crucial aspect for our community. I expect these trends to continue to grow, as technology continues to drive growth for many companies in the international sports business industry.”
SPORTEL has shown a willingness to adapt its offering over the years.
From the late 1990s, SPORTEL rotated its spring convention between Asia and the Americas, complementing its long-established annual gathering in Monaco.
SPORTEL then decided to bring conventions to Asia in consecutive years for the first time, with SPORTELAsia 2019 in Macau following last year’s edition in Singapore.
Next year, SPORTEL’s spring gathering will return to Miami from March 3-6 after an online survey gauged levels of interest amongst the event’s community.
“It was a close race between Asia and North America, but North America won and Miami was chosen by SPORTEL as the host city,” Puons says.
“Miami is one of the leading and growing sports media and technology environments for the Americas, and its transport links to the rest of the world are very good. SPORTEL has had some great events in Miami in the past and I am sure this will be another one for the books.”
Looking ahead, SPORTEL is keen to reflect the changing nature of the industry.
“It is great to see how some of our traditional clients, that have been with us for many years, have made critical changes to their strategy, at exactly the right time, to remain at the top of the table,” Puons adds.
“It is also exciting to see how many companies are trying to change the game, either by competing with market leaders head on, or collaborating with them.
“Over the past few years, we have seen traditional media companies decide to work with the new kids on the block and not compete directly with them, which for many has been successful.
“I expect collaboration and the consolidation of the industry to continue to shape the future of the industry and SPORTEL.”