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Are Audio Visual events in Brazil prepared for international?

Are Audio Visual events in Brazil prepared for international?

We visited some events in Brazil to find out.

Broadcast Brazil Column by rené Schaap

This year and some foreign visitors had been visiting some of the most important Audio Visual exhibitions in Brazil. AES Brasil EXPO, Church Expo 2015 and SET EXPO 2015. We also paid some attention to Church EXPO and the ABTA 2015 on the Broadcast Brazil’s blog. We are also familiar with the NAB and IBC exhibitions in which we attended ourselves past years.

Broadcast Brazil - AES EXPO , IBC , ChurchTechExpo , IBC , SET Expo

AES Brasil EXPO and the Church Tech EXPO were planned on the same days. I am honest when i say that i did not really check far in front where exactly both were organised, i just checked AES on this a few weeks before the event would take place. I thought both events were located in the same exhibition building because of the dates they were held…. and i was not the only one it seamed. Than i found out that they were both on another exhibition location? For me as a visitor this is not really a problem, It just costs travel time…. in this case it cost me another day. But i think for the companies who hired some space in one of the both exhibitions would have preferred one location for both events… just to attract more visitors. Because even the big guys have a budget to spend each year and to be on both was impossible for them.

Trying to register AES Brasil EXPO 2015 as a foreigner was … special.
First thing to do is online register to attend the event for free, and that is also the start of…. some surprices. Because we put our selfs in the feet as a foreign exhibition visitor we attended the english part of the website which is given as an option on the top of the website by a little english flag. So far so good.

Broadcast Brazil - Website AES EXPO

As ‘Attendant: we clicked on REGISTER NOW! This leads to a page in portugese for exhibitors.. ok? After some clicking thru the website menu we found another link to register. As you can see in that english menu that there are also options in portuguese?

Broadcast Brazil - Website menu AES EXPO

We tried to register again. With some help of Google Translate we managed pretty wel. After filling in the form in a Safari browser on an Apple we had to stop because the form gave a ‘popup’ window that we were not capable to click away. Only a Forced Quit of the browser saved us. Let’s try Firefox than…. that worked much better. But … the links now leads us now to the Portugese register form? There they ask (of course) to attend by a ‘CPF number’ . As you may know… foreigner visitors, except foreigners who live in Brazil, do NOT have a CPF number.

We found out by clicking the other options in the same menu that not one result was something a foreign visitor to AES Brasil EXPO can use. It was available in Portuguese, or not available at all. It all seams that the website part for foreigners was not finalised yet.

Broadcast Brazil - Website form AES EXPO

After filling-in as much as we could in the portugese form, also by adding info like DDD 019 TELEFONE 12345678 we clicked CADASTRAR. And that the following happened. Nothing! No message… no reply by an email. NADA.

Meanwhile we contacted the event organiser by the contact form on the same website, after 2 weeks we did not get any answer from that side. We posted a message on the Facebook page of the event organiser … we got an answer…. in English. They said not to worry because i was registered!

Hi René! Don't worry: You are already registered! You just have to come to the AES Brasil Expo 2015 and show yr professional card or any personal doc at the registration desk in the venue. We deserve very nice time in São Paulo. Thanks for coming and any doubt, let us know, ok? Regards from Brazil!

They also promised to fix the problems on the website before the event. That is also good news.

So… All done… so let’s go to São Paulo. When we arrived at the AES Brasil EXPO it seams at the desk i was not registered at all and have to do a manuel one at the desk… with a pencil. Not one of the people behind the desk at Expo center North spoke english, so it was not easy for us to explain ourselves. It took time and it created a long line behind us with people who also want to enter this exhibition. It became even worse because other (not patient) visitors in the line said that we have to speak portuguese ‘here’. Really? I told them in my best portuguese that we do or best, but i am a foreign guest visiting this exhibition in Brazil.

For us this was a bad entry on this exhibition. Than we found out that it was….. small….. very small. We knew this exhibition from past years, but we would not expect that it had shrinked this way. The website problems were also never solved, the picture below was from a screenshot of the day the event started.

Broadcast Brazil - Website form AES EXPO

Besides these problems we also missed a FREE WIFI on location in which could be a good service for the visitors. Food and drinks were well arranged in the back of the event hall. And we still managed to network with visitors and companies Happy

Onto the next one. Church Tech Expo on the other side of São Paulo.
The expo organised by Panorama was much, much better arranged. As on the website as on location all went very smooth…. no problems with online forms what so ever, The exhibition was also much bigger and diverse than the AES EXPO. We really enjoyed this exhibition where there was space enough to walk, to talk en look around. Some special things were there to be seen like some new OB-vans and Uplink SNG vans, Jibs, camera’s etc. etc.

There were just some things we missed here.
- Free fast WIFI on location.
- And a bus that brings you really back to the metro station and not dumps you… closeby. We have had a walk in the dark a few blocks back to the metro station, we just followed others from our bus because we did not know where we were.

Third exhibition we visited was some weeks ago. SET EXPO 2015.
We must say, this exhibition was also very professional arranged and besides that.. the exhibition Photo • Image was happening at the same location.. For a lot of Brazilian Audio Visual companies a very good combination of exhibitions to visit. Online registering was easy and smooth as it was with Church Tech Expo. And… to get our entry card we were be able to go to a special desk for foreign visitors where somebody helped us out in english. The setup of the exhibition was very relaxed with a lot of new things to see and try yourself. At a lot of stands the language was not any problem, Portuguese, English and even French or German.

We did not find a Free WIFI at SET EXPO itself but at Photo • Image we found one. Also the bus service from and back to the metro station was excellent arranged. Food and drinks were well arranged in the back of the event hall, but was pretty expensive.

Now let’s see what is happening worldwide in these kinds of exhibitions. For example in USA we have NAB, in Europe we have IBC. They welcome foreigners very well, exhibitionars and also exhibition visitors. Both exhibitions are known about their no1 position in Audio Visual Broadcast exhibitions for their area, North America and Europe. So now my question…

Broadcast Brazil - IBC 2015 Amsterdam - [photo credit: Michiel Overeem]

Why AES Expo, Church Tech EXPO, SET EXPO and Photo • Image don’t combine in Brazil as one big exhibition on one location and around april each year? Maybe also add the Expo Music. It will be ‘THE Audio Visual and Broadcast exhibition’ for South America. Making it an International event and add people who can communicate in English and Spanish besides Portuguese. Arrange a website where all who are interested, from Brazil and outside brazil can easily register.

In doing so:
- It will safe costs for the exhibition event organisers and companies who exhibit
- It will bring more foreign companies to Brazil to exhibit
- It will bring more local visitors but also from neighbour countries
- The conference will bring a more diverse group of speakers
- It give opportunities for companies to work abroad

We at Broadcast Brazil think that the Audio Visual exhibition organizers in Brazil have to level up and try to do this. It will be better for everybody in our business What do you think?

René Schaap
More info you can find on his LinkedIn: follow him on Twitter René_Schaap

For dates on next years events of the mentioned Broadcast events in this column, check our Industry Agenda.

Church Tech EXPO
Expo Music
Photo • Image

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