As summer wanes, our focus moves from pool parties and BBQs to back-to-school functions, the onset of the holiday season, and for most of us, attending the next trade show. It’s an annual ritual of sorts as gatherings once again become part of our lives as the seasons change.
Today, the live-event industry continues to recover from the devastating contraction of the pandemic, although many regions continue to struggle with the risk of spreading infection.
One sector that is doing particularly well in this challenging environment is the trade show industry.
Prior to the pandemic, trade shows reached an all-time high of over $19 billion in market size. Like many economic sectors, the trade show market volume has been severely wounded by the COVID-19 Pandemic, dropping by nearly $11.5 billion in 2020. Events were scuttled or indefinitely postponed, travel plans cancelled, and the commerce associated with trade shows and conferences was suddenly lost.
The good news is the industry has been recovering the pre-pandemic numbers. This year, the trade-show planning industry in the US is estimated to hit $18.2 billion.
As an example of the desire to dive back into the live mix, this past March, Safe Haus provided services for a large digital security conference at San Francisco’s Moscone Center. Because the show was pushed into June from February nobody was really sure how many people would attend that were registered. Would the fear of infection keep attendees away? As it turned out, we had an increase of 25% in attendance, a shining success for the Event Producers — but it did come at a cost.
The unfortunate fact remains, large gatherings are risky, and the more well-attended and successful the event, the greater the odds of spreading infection. We saw evidence of that in San Francisco.
Anecdotal evidence from the event we acquired through workforce and staff testing, pre- and post-event suggests that as many as 20% of the staff contracted the virus and tested positive. Most likely, an unknown percentage of those attendees subsequently boarded airplanes and carried the virus home.
This why “lifeguarding” against the spread of infections is so critical. Large crowds, lax attitudes towards masking and close contact create an environment ripe for spread of the latest variant of COVID-19.
This why providing Lifeguards is so essential. Lifeguards that screen everyone getting in the pool… or expo hall and occasionally encourage masking. The Lifeguard is also there to mitigate risk from potential on-site spread.
At Safe Haus, our goal is simple, to safeguard against infection spread in order to foster a business-as-usual level of confidence. At the core of our mission as The New Lifeguard is Business Continuity.
As we get back to it and enter this environment of risk, Safe Haus is here with a complete menu of services designed to push back against the tide of infection that continues to compromise events, businesses and, indeed, our lives. We are here to fight for the ability to gather and conduct business, to develop relationships and grow in our personal and professional lives.
We’re here for you. We’re the ones sitting in the tall chair in the corner… The New Lifeguards.