BMF and NMBS have both revealed plans to relaunch their individual conferences in 2012 – one in Spain and one in Portugal, and both within days of each other.
BMF briefed its supplier members about its plans at the end of March, but NMBS was first out with a general announcement. Its event will be at the Don Carlos Resort & Spa in Marbella on June 21-24.
“Listening to many of our independent merchant members and suppliers, the industry is now ready for a conference that tackles the major issues that face us all today,” said NMBS md Chris Hayward. The conference, he said, will give independents and their key suppliers the opportunity to discuss how they can best work together in the future – and while the emphasis will be on a working event, there will still be plenty of opportunity for delegates to enjoy the luxury facilities of a five-star hotel and spa.
BMF’s plans are for an all-industry conference at the Hotel Tivoli Marina in Vilamoura, Portugal, on June 14-17. The proposal was discussed by three syndicate groups after the presentation in March, and all three groups came up with broadly similar recommendations: one conference, open to all merchants, with both Unimer and NMBS invited to support it; and with an open acknowledgement of the crucial role the buying groups now play in acting as catalysts for independent merchants’ attendance.
BMF also stressed the need for the event to be seen very much as a high-level business affair, with two full days of business sessions as well as a social programme.
“Our big concern is to organise an event the industry will value, which will deliver good value for both merchants and manufacturers, and which will attract the broadest attendance from the industry,” said BMF md Chris Pateman.