Home » The Association of African Exhibition Organisers Introduces New 2024/2025 Board at AGM

The Association of African Exhibition Organisers Introduces New 2024/2025 Board at AGM

by Tia

The Association of African Exhibition Organisers (AAXO) successfully concluded its Annual General Meeting (AGM) today, 21 June 2024. During the meeting, the newly appointed board members, representing a diverse array of companies and expertise, were announced, highlighting AAXO’s dedication to fostering collaboration and promoting excellence in the African events industry.

In 2023/2024, AAXO’s primary focus has been on revitalising the exhibitions industry, supporting members in their recovery and growth. The Association forged strategic partnerships with key public sector partners like the South Africa National Convention Bureau and Infrastructure South Africa; prioritised education and youth development, through the introduction of initiatives like the AAXO Youth Committee and AAXO Leadership Summit; and will continue to promote sustainability and best practices in the industry, prioritise expanding its reach across Africa, and ensuring ongoing support and value for its members.

The elected board members for 2024/2025 that will continue to advance AAXO’s key priorities and focus areas, are:

Chair: Gary Corin, Managing Director at Specialised Exhibitions

Gary Corin’s leadership as Chair is expected to further strengthen AAXO’s position and enhance its contributions to the development of specialised exhibitions throughout Africa. With his track record of successful ventures and 27 years of experience at Specialised Exhibitions—where he has held the positions of Marketing Director, Chief Operating Officer, and now Managing Director—Gary Corin is well-equipped to support the Association’s goals.

Vice-Chair: Projeni Pather, Managing Director at Exposure Marketing

Projeni Pather, the former Chair and Spokesperson of AAXO, will now serve as the Association’s Vice-Chair. As a distinguished keynote speaker and intuitive thought leader who regularly contributes to marketing and exhibition industry media, Projeni is a dynamic force driven by a passion for collaboration, communication, and innovation with an in-depth understanding of the events landscape in Africa.

Treasurer: James Bull, Sales Director at Informa Group

Serving as Treasurer for a second consecutive term, James Bull’s financial expertise and experience will remain vital to maintaining AAXO’s fiscal health and sustainability. His understanding of the events industry, combined with his financial acumen, will contribute to developing effective strategies for the association’s growth.

Joining the board is Tracy Gounden, Business Development and Portfolio Director at Messe Frankfurt South Africa; Adele Hartdegen, Chief Executive Officer at Dogan Events; Joshua Low, Vice President for South Africa at dmg events; and Errol Bryce, the Group Commercial Director at VUKA Group. They are supported by Devi Paulsen-Abbott, the Immediate Past-Chair; Cornelle du Preez, the Venue Committee Chair; and Anthea Buys, Office Manager.

“As the incoming Chairperson, I want to extend my gratitude to our outgoing Chairperson, Devi Paulsen-Abbott. Devi has dedicated many years to improving the status and quality of the exhibition industry, and it is an honour to build upon that foundation and continue the important work of the AAXO Board,” said Gary Corin, Chairperson of AAXO.

The board members, starting their roles immediately, are committed to executing vital initiatives like youth development and fostering young talent within the industry. They will persist in tackling essential sustainability challenges, enhancing global recognition for the African events and exhibitions sector, and supporting its growth and evolving needs.

“Our upcoming initiatives as AAXO include attracting diverse, young talent to our industry, promoting sustainability and greening efforts, ensuring supply chain reliability, and enhancing our capacity and delivery to meet world-class standards. We have a talented, experienced, and dynamic board in place to achieve these goals. Additionally, marketing exhibitions as a catalyst for economic growth and stimulation will remain a priority. I look forward to collaborating with all stakeholders in the exhibitions and related industries,” concluded Corin.

For more information about the Association of African Exhibition Organisers and its initiatives, please visit www.aaxo.co.za  

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