Rio can deliver great Games, with hard work – IOC

Nawal El Moutawakel, chair of the IOC Coordination Commission speaking at the 125th IOC Session (Photo copyright: IOC / Juillart)

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has backed Rio de Janeiro to deliver a successful Olympic Games in August. 

At the close of its final Coordination Commission visit to the host city, the IOC said the Rio 2016 organising committee is set to resolve “thousands of details” to produce a “great Games”.

“As we enter the final 114 days until the opening of the Olympic Games Rio 2016, and despite the complex political and economic context, we are confident that Brazil and the Brazilians are on track to deliver successful Olympic Games with an outstanding legacy,” said IOC Coordination Commission Chair Nawal El Moutawakel.

“The last stretch is always the hardest. During the operational phase that we are entering now, there are thousands of details still to manage, and their timely resolution will make the difference between average Games and great Games. The Rio 2016 team is ready to rise to this challenge and deliver Olympic and Paralympic Games that will reflect Brazilians’ warmth, hospitality and passion for sports. We believe that Rio 2016 will make the host nation proud.”

Preparations for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, which begin on 5 August 2016, have been beset by organisational problems that have threatened to derail the massive project

But in a statement, the IOC said many of the venues are now finished, with the venues 98% complete overall; that 33 test events had been successfully completed with positive feedback from the competing athletes; and that popular backing for the Games remains strong, with over 70% support in Rio de Janeiro – demonstrating that the majority of local citizens see the Games as a positive element in the development of their city and country.

Brazil’s economy was booming when Rio was awarded the Games, but the country is now in the grip of recession. 

“Thanks to the solidarity and support from the IOC, International Federations, and National Olympic Committees during this difficult time for Brazil, we will be ready,” said Rio 2016 President Carlos Arthur Nuzman. 

“We will not be complacent in the last mile. We know that we still have important elements to finalise before the Opening Ceremony on 5 August. We are working hard with all of our partners on each of these points and we are more confident than ever that Brazilians will deliver great Games.”

The IOC cited a number of lasting benefits that will result from Rio hosting the Games, such as improved public transport, better waste management, better city operations, job training, state-of-the-art sports facilities and new schools.

“The strong support from the local authorities, as well as the partnership and solidarity shown by the IOC, International Federations, National Olympic Committees, and other Olympic partners, in line with Olympic Agenda 2020, has been invaluable to the Rio organisers, as they finalise their preparations. I’d like to thank all of those involved for their hard work and dedication to this project,” said El Moutawakel.


How Big Data can improve urban life

Modern cities generate a flood of data, and much of it is public. Transport companies know how their trains, buses and cars are travelling. Payment systems monitor the availability of parking spaces. CCTVs provide real-time video links. Environmental sensors track air and water quality.

There’s even big data on garbage: networked compactor bins use sensors to monitor waste levels and allow collection routes to be optimised.

Two years ago, Rob Kitchin, a professor at the National Institute of Regional and Spatial Analysis at Ireland’s Maynooth University launched a novel app, the Dublin Dashboard. This publishes sensor-readings about the city, providing citizens, public sector workers and companies with real-time information, time-series indicator data and interactive maps about all aspects of Ireland’s capital. The data sets are compiled on an ongoing basis by the Irish Central Statistics Office and Eurostat.

Kitchin has built an easy to use interactive website featuring maps, graphs and apps. The data available covers a variety of areas, from transport, housing and planning to the environment, emergency services and health.

With a few clicks, Dubliners can check the tides, temperature, shipping, river levels, oxygen and pollution levels, ambient noise, road traffic, parking spaces – even available bike-shares. Camera feeds yield images. Maps break down city population by topics like gender and density.

“And all the data is open,” Kitchin says. “Everybody can go and build their own apps off this, or they can just look at it.”

Although the Dublin Dashboard obviously useful – and fun – there is a serious side too, translating into what Kitchin calls new forms of governance.

Cities around the world are demonstrating how it works. Atlanta has a purpose-built dashboard room, where city government meets weekly to assess metrics. Rio de Janeiro built an “urban operations centre” with data streams from 30 government agencies, to try to manage the potential chaos of the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games happening there this year.

Many cities have litter bins with sensors to signal when they’re full – meaning the garbage trucks can plot more efficient pick-up routes.

Kitchin’s Big Data even helps with policing. Based on perfectly reasonable evidence – neighbourhood crime statistics, social media connections, for example – a person may seem statistically likely to commit a crime. With that information, the police or social workers can be pro-active and offer help or warnings.

The problem, says Kitchin, is that “you don’t have evidence that this person has committed a crime … but you’re already treating them as a criminal.”

Of course, this information torrent often can turn into a dangerous flood. It can lead managers, distracted by all the data, to focus on the wrong problems – what Kitchin calls “technological solutionism.” For instance, he says, with more data “you might be able to better manage homelessness, but you’re not going to stop people becoming homeless.”

The Big Data flood also poses privacy challenges. In January of this year, Kitchin published a new report on the issue. Entitled “Getting smarter about smart cities: Improving data privacy and data security, it argues that the “haphazard” approach to the development of networked technologies for so-called “smart cities” cannot be allowed to continue without taking proper account of privacy challenges.

Never before has so much information about people – their characteristics, their location and movements, and their activities – been generated. These data can be put to many good uses, but they also raise a number of issues with respect to data privacy, data protection, and data security,” the report says.

But the report also cautions against becoming “overly focused” on the negative concerns and harms lest they stifle innovation. While the concerns relating to smart cities are “significant”, we need to remain mindful of their potential benefits in producing “more efficient, productive, sustainable, resilient, transparent, fair and equitable cities”.

Kitchin recommends the establishment of advisory boards and governance and ethics committees to oversee such smart city projects. An emergency response team should also be appointed to tackle cybersecurity incidents, where data was hacked or compromised.

“I advocate a much more systematic approach that aims to gain the benefits smart-city technologies offer, whilst minimising the potential risks,” he says.

In coming years, Kitchin plans to extend the scope of the Dublin Dashboard project to include other data and information such as maps of social media.

This article was written by William Echikson

Simon Clegg excited to join Dubai Expo 2020 as COO

Dubai Expo 2020 has appointed Simon Clegg as Chief Operating Officer, the title he also held for the Baku 2015 European Games. 

As a speaker at Host City 2015 in November, Clegg shared his experiences of organising the inaugural European Games in Baku.

He led a team of 2,500 full time staff, supported by 12,000 volunteers, to deliver a mega event in an unprecedented compressed time frame and broadcast to an estimated 832 million households. 

This is the first time Clegg has been appointed to run a major non-sports event.

“I am very excited about joining the team at Expo 2020,” said Clegg.

“The vision and ambition of the project will make it a stunning experience for the expected 25 million visitors, 70% of whom will come from overseas.

“Within each country's pavilion visitors will be able to experience the rich diversity and culture that makes up our planet as well as seeing the latest technological developments around each of our chosen themes. 

“Dubai is already one of the world's greatest tourist destinations and its position will be further cemented through the hosting of this truly global event"

Clegg’s previous roles include managing Team GB at Beijing in 2008 – its most successful Olympic Games in a century – and leading the campaign to persuade the British government and Mayor of London to bid to host the 2012 Olympic Games. He was subsequently appointed a board member of the London 2012 Olympic Games bid and Organising Committees.  

“I am delighted to have someone of Simon's caliber, leadership skills and considerable management experience of large global events join our team,” said Expo 2020 Director General and UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation, Her Excellency Reem Al-Hashimy.

“His management and commercial skills will strengthen our team and help ensure the successful delivery of our 1,082 acre site. I look forward to working with him on this hugely important event for Dubai, the UAE and the entire region.”


"Blind bidding" adieu?

Paul Bush OBE is VisitScotland’s Director of Events and Chairman of Commonwealth Games Scotland

I listened on recently as a member of the Scottish parliament described the transformation effect sport has had on his city, Glasgow, over the course of his relatively short adulthood. While, as a child, being subjected to pervasive messaging which labelled Scotland’s largest city ‘the sick man of Europe’, he now takes particular delight in the continued regeneration on our west coast. 

This renaissance owes much to the foresight and subsequent effort of those who have successfully secured events like the 2014 Commonwealth Games, FIG World Artistic Gymnastics Championships and 2018 European Championships for the city, amongst many others. 

Accordingly, the catalyst for this revolution of sorts has been sport. A great love of sport, has, in the words of this MSP, driven and irreversibly altered how his constituents experience the city in which they reside: be it in the evolving cityscape, the upgraded infrastructure or prevalent belief among citizens that Glasgow is, once again, a powerhouse. No longer in an industrial sense, of course, but as the eighth greatest sporting city on earth. 

As a slight aside, I would argue that these events have altered the consciousness of the Scottish nation as a whole, not only in a sporting sense. Scotland now recognises that its sons and daughters are capable of shining on the world stage and that our investment in sport has engendered invaluable social impacts, as well as numerous medals and new records. 

Aside from partisan praise for Glasgow and Scotland, this anecdote serves a very simple purpose in this wider narrative; it demonstrates the potential created by events governed well. 

And as all of those involved in the process of attempting to secure events for their respective municipalities will know, good governance starts from the initiation of the bidding process.  

Now, I cite Glasgow as a recent example in which, through rigorous care and procedural best practice, the city has reaped myriad benefits which were successfully sown many years previously. There are many others, however, that do not realise such prosperous outcomes, the reasons for which are both too numerous and complex to discuss herein. The solution for the unpredictable nature of results in an industry where, at least on the pitch/track/court, results are the only thing of any consequence, is, fortunately, less obscure. It is the more transparent governance around the process of event bidding. 

Technical evaluations are, in principle, an excellent means towards this end. However, controversy arises when they inform the choice of candidates, rather than underpin their decisions. Of course, factors not taken in to account in the process of a technical evaluation have to be considered, not least political climate. But to those unacquainted with event bidding as it presently stands, the fact that the, apparently, most accomplished bid often loses out in the final reveal, bears further scrutiny. And probably rightly so. 

It begs the question over whether there is scope for a standardised stable of tools to be provided to federations and governing bodies to help inform their decisions. Objective criteria, consistently adhered to across all sports and all major events, would help better gauge the competency of competing bids and help to eradicate votes potentially cast on instinctive or misguided judgement. 

In support of this line of argument, it has even been reasoned that completed technical evaluations should be published to encourage stricter adherence to their recommendations, or at least to elicit an explanation as to why any departure from the recommendations of a technical evaluation is selected as the chosen course. 

Leaving aside any insinuations of wrongdoing, more must also be done to encourage economic transparency in order to eradicate the ramifications experienced by host cities who fail to predict difficulties some way down the line. 

At present, a situation often arises where, in an effort to impress, candidates overpromise only to, ultimately, under-deliver. To give one example, the Olympic Games are seemingly beset by a perennial sprint finish, whereby, only aware of shortcomings all-too-late, infrastructure projects are rushed or pared-back by the host city. At best, this erodes confidence in the potentially profound social impacts mega-events should guarantee; at worst, it risks dereliction of duty and gives rise to social unrest.

For those familiar with game theory, the competitive nature of bidding must be of the greatest interest. Lacking definitive criteria to meet, cities and states must simply seek to outshine their nearest competitors. Or, more accurately, seek to outshine what capacity they imagine their nearest competitor may have. The result of this ‘blind bidding’ is a less than ideal outcome for all involved, including the winner. 

With more strongly defined and widely publicised benchmarks upon which bids are judged, one can claim with some confidence that capability and credibility, rather cash, will become the foundations upon which successful bids are constructed. The result? Greater likelihood of well-placed investment, improved legacy benefits and less empty stadia as the circus leaves town. 

While it is not for me to pass judgement on the current health of global sporting governance, I am more than willing to indicate the current circumstances, while regrettable, present an invaluable opportunity. 

In the course of numerous allegations, withdrawal of support and widespread condemnation in recent months, we have learned in no uncertain terms that the forces behind the extraordinary commercial success of sport will no longer endure dubiety. Due to the extent of its own success, all of sport, particularly its governance, is being called to account, and it must reform. 

Emboldened by the voice offered by social media and the internet age, the public can no longer be categorised as homogenous factions of brand advocates. Today, the consumer more fluidly elects those it wishes to trust, and brands with a sponsors’ stake in sport will no longer tolerate its flaws. 

That being said, it should not be forgotten that, by the same token, the consumer of today is now open to more routes of engagement than ever before thanks to those same technologies. As such, the potential is more people, more enthused by a greater diversity of sporting pursuits. For the general health of the sector, that can only be an exciting prospect. But it can only be realised through change. That change being excellent governance from the ground-up. 

And, if we agree with the assertion above that good governance is established from the outset of the bidding process, what better area for us to concentrate those initial efforts towards reform. 


This opinion piece was written by Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events and Chairman of Commonwealth Games Scotland

Glasgow becomes the hub of ITS this June

The ITS European Congress takes place at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) on 6 to 9 June

Glasgow will be hosting the largest annual event of ITS professionals in Europe during the first week of June.  In addition to the picturesque scenery, world class architecture and a vibrant nightlife and shopping scene, the city will be bustling with over 2,500 ITS professionals coming from around the continent to meet, discuss, and learn from each other. 

Glasgow has a rich and varied background in ITS, being one of the very first to deploy several intelligent transport solutions and has since been constantly developing these solutions year after year in hope of becoming one of the smartest cities in Europe today. Over decades, Glasgow has transformed itself into a smarter, safer, and more environmentally friendly city with smart street lights able to record pollution levels or below the surface road sensors detecting traffic flow. 

What better destination for the European ITS community get together?

Whether you come from a background of policy, research or business, or consider yourself an amateur transport enthusiast, we invite you to join us in Glasgow 6 to 9 June for the 11th ITS European Congress.  The theme of this year’s Congress is “Delivering Future Cities Now”; with focus on increasing connectivity, bringing new services to users and improving communication, in a sustainable way. 

After a highly successful call for papers the European Program Committee met in Brussels at the beginning of March to finalise this year’s Congress programme.  The selected papers have been organised into over 100 sessions in accordance with the 5 key topics ranging from automation through sustainability and environmental impact to satellite services and user centric service initiatives. 

“The Congress is designed to provide insight into the real life ITS solutions of today and showcase the ideas of tomorrow with an interactive and wide array of programmes and activities”, Didier Gorteman, Director of Congress and Chair of the European Programme Committee, explained. “In addition to the session discussions, demonstrations will give participants the chance to experience technological advancements first-hand while the exhibition will provide the opportunity to stumble on some of the ingenious ideas revolutionising transport today”, he continued.

The growing list of exciting events include a Mayor Summit on Wednesday 8 June, where leaders of European cities big and small can discuss and share knowledge on deploying ITS solutions in urban environments.  Building on the success of previous years, a special student programme is also under way where the organisers are preparing events appealing to the younger generation in addition to offering special discounted rates for students. 

For those looking for a more hands-on experience, several technical visits are planned on 7 and 8 June  including a visit to the Glasgow Operations Centre (GOC), a state-of-the-art integrated traffic and public safety management control room; a tour of the Traffic Scotland National Control Centre (TSNCC); and the United Kingdom’s largest bus depot. 

Glasgow will surely match up to one of the most anticipated social highlights of the Congress with a gala dinner held in the Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum. In addition to a spectacular dinner and entertainment, visitors will have a chance to visit the extensive collection of over 8000 objects providing a rich insight into the history and arts of Scotland.  

The 11th European ITS Congress 2016 is organised by ERTICO – ITS Europe in partnership with the European Commission, and hosted by Glasgow City Council and Transport Scotland. Visit Scotland, the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC), ITS United Kingdom and the Glasgow City Marketing Bureau strongly support the event.

Registrations are now open, with exceptional early bird rates until 18 April!


Host City welcomes City Day at SportAccord Convention

Iain Edmondson of London and Partners (middle) speaking at Host City conference, with Rio 2016 Director Mario Andrada (left) and WPP CEO Sir Martin Sorrell (right)

Once again, cities will be in the spotlight at this year’s SportAccord Convention with City-to-City and City Forum taking place on Tuesday 19 April at the SwissTech Convention Center, Lausanne. As ‘go-to’ events for delegates, this year’s City Day is no exception, with an excellent line-up of speakers, a content-packed programme assessing the impact of sport, with plenty of opportunity for the audience to be involved.

Starting the day, City-to-City will enable delegates to hit the ground running by providing a platform for free discussion on the needs and challenges faced when looking to host sport events. Led by Iain Edmondson, Head of Major Events at London & Partners, he commented, “Cities like London have come to recognise the value of major events in developing our economy and society. We are always seeking to learn from colleagues around the world and we hope to see representatives from every continent taking part.” 

Points for discussion could include: issues relating to the bid process, economic impact, legacy, governmental and private sector support, as well as other matters of concern. City-to-City is attended by representatives from regions, cities and countries, with delegates encouraged to share experiences and lessons learned.

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events commented, “Major events make a vital contribution to the Scottish economy and, in recent years, staging some of the world’s most prestigious events, such as the Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup, has brought about substantial benefits for the nation.” He went on to say, “Our progress has been greatly aided by knowledge sharing and discussing best practice with other leading event-hosting nations and I look forward to the further opportunity of doing just that during City-to-City and City Forum at the SportAccord Convention.”

The afternoon will begin with City Forum led by Don Schumacher, Executive Director of the National Association of Sports Commissions. The event will provide a series of seminars and panel sessions, addressing the needs and concerns of cities bidding for, as well as hosting, international sporting events. 

Speaking of the importance of such an event, Ben Avison, Editorial and Conference Director of Host City for the Cavendish Group commented, “Host City is pleased to support City Forum at the SportAccord Convention. As a media provider, Host City always places cities at the centre of the major event hosting community and we welcome this excellent opportunity for cities to share experiences of hosting sports events.”

The first City Forum session will focus on The Current State of Affairs for cities presented by one of the Principal Media Partners, Sportcal. Delegates will receive an exclusive printed Summary covering some of the highlights from the studies made for the Global Sports Impact (GSI) Reports.

This year’s Event Watch focuses on the Tour de France Grand Départ providing a Netherlands case study on their decision to bid for the Tour start, as well as the results that followed.

The City Forum will also focus on Government and Non-Government Hosting Models with representatives from different countries, discussing the benefits and limitations of various models used by cities, bidding for and hosting sporting events. In the final session, delegates will be able to take part in a Group Project challenge focused on an event-bidding issue.

To find out more about SportAccord Convention, including the 4-day Conference Programme and Official Schedule, or to register for SportAccord Convention, visit:

HOST CITY is the media brand of choice for cities, rights holders, organisers and suppliers in their quest for best practice on hosting major events. First published in 2003 for the organisers of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, HOST CITY now serves all sports, business and cultural events through a quarterly magazine, online news and live events. Contact or visit the website


Source: SportAccord Convention


FIBA Europe to address policy challenges with EOC EU Office

FIBA Europe, the European governing body for basketball, has joined seven other sports federations by becoming a partner of the European Olympic Committees (EOC) EU Office in Brussels. 

The EOC EU Office represents the EOC to European institutions, working with towards a European Sports policy. It also represents the interests of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) at national, European and international level. 

“I am extremely pleased to welcome the prestigious organisation of FIBA Europe as our latest partner. When we established the EOC EU Office, it was organisations such as FIBA Europe that we wanted to target in order to build a strong network of Olympic Movement sports’ organisations to partner with the EU’s institutions,” said EOC President Patrick Hickey. 

“The European Union brings a number of challenges as well as opportunities for the field of sport. The EOC EU Office is our answer to facing these challenges and to taking full advantage of these opportunities. With basketball being one of the major team sports in Europe, I am sure that this partnership will be of mutual benefit to FIBA Europe and to the EOC in many EU policy areas, but also beyond the EU institutions.” 

FIBA Europe is the sixth European Federation to partner with the EOC EU Office, following European Athletics, European Aquatics, the European Handball Federation, the European Volleyball Confederation and Rugby Europe. The EOC EU Office has also partnered with two International Federations: FIFA and the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF). 

"At FIBA Europe, we are always looking to build partnerships with institutions that share our commitment to sport and the positive impact it has on young people and our societies,” said FIBA Europe President Turgay Demirel.

“The EOC EU Office is one such institution. Basketball is one of Europe's leading sports, and this relationship will allow us to work more effectively towards our goal of strengthening the game in each of our member countries and beyond."

Basketball has been featured in every edition of the European Youth Olympic Festival, dating back to the inaugural games in 1991. 

 “FIBA Europe’s commitment to the European Olympic family grew last summer in Baku when our exciting new format, 3x3, proved to be one of the biggest hits with fans at the inaugural European Games,” said FIBA Executive Director Europe Kamil Novak.

“Now, becoming a partner of the EOC EU Office is the next logical step in our mutually beneficial relationship.”

A full list of the EOC EU Office’s partners can be found at


Glasgow and Berlin unite under new European Championships brand

The hosts and rights holders of the innovative event taking place in Glasgow and Berlin in 2018 have unveiled a new, unifying brand identity under the name “European Championships” – shortened from the previous title of “European Sports Championships”.

The multi-sport event in August 2018 brings together the existing European Championships of athletics, aquatics, cycling, gymnastics, rowing and triathlon, and also introduces a new golf team championship onto the European stage.

The brand is represented by a new logo, the star-like “Mark of a Champion” said to represent the vision at the heart of the new multi-sport championships, the aim of which is said to “create a must-attend, must-watch experience that elevates the status of European Champions”.

The logo was created in partnership by the sports federations, Host Cities Glasgow and Berlin and broadcast partner the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

 “The launch of this impressive brand is the starting gun for a European Championships concept that will help elevate the Berlin 2018 European Athletics Championships to a scale we have never seen before,” said European Athletics President Svein Arne Hansen, co-chair of the 2018 European Championships Board.

“In Berlin we have a fantastic host city for our Championships, and in the German athletics federation, we have a committed partner who have produced a great generation of athletes. We are all committed to delivering the best-ever European Athletics Championships.”

The organising partners said the event will take place every four years, anticipating a television audience of around 1 billion, plus multiple digital and radio platforms in 2018. 

Around 1500 athletes are expected to compete in Berlin from 7-12 August as part of the European Athletics Championships, while approximately 3025 athletes are set to visit Scotland for the other six events between 1 and 12 August.

“I am delighted that Glasgow’s vibrant personality shines through this new brand,” said Councillor Frank McAveety, Leader of Glasgow City Council. 

“We have worked together with these amazing sports to create something that reflects all of our values by embracing our ambition, our strength in unity and our ongoing journey to provide opportunities for all of our citizens through the power of sport and culture.”

Senator Frank Henkel, City of Berlin, said: “We are really pleased to see the unveiling of the umbrella brand for the European Championships of which we are part. Our city is well underway in its preparations for the European Athletics Championships, and our own Berlin 2018 mark will be unveiled soon.”

Each of the participating sports are due to unveil their own event logos in the coming months.


Soccerex announce Dein, Houllier, Torres, Mendieta, Movistar and Fox Sports for Mexico Forum

Some of the topics to be addressed at the Forum include digital marketing, international growth, player transfers and the Hispanic influence on football business in the US

At a Soccerex press conference in Mexico City on Wednesday, a panel of distinguished guests announced the plans for the Soccerex Americas Forum 2016 and confirmed the first selection of VIPs set to attend the event, including Carlos Alberto Torres, captain of the legendary 1970 FIFA World Cup winning Brazil team, lifting the trophy in Mexico’s famous Azteca Stadium.

The Soccerex Americas Forum, held in partnership with leading sports marketing agency Global W Mexico and the Mexico City Government (CDMX), will be taking place at the Camino Real Hotel in Mexico City on 11-12 May. The event will bring together over 700 senior decision makers from the global football industry, with international experts delivering over 10 hours of top level business insight through a programme of conference panels and presentations and over 24 hours of unrivalled networking opportunities provided through an exhibition, featuring over 40 companies and a series of networking and social events.

Duncan Revie expressed his excitement at holding the first Soccerex in Mexico in partnership with the team at Global W Mexico and announced that the Americas Forum will see David Dein, one of the founders of The Premier League, look at the secrets of establishing league growth alongside representatives from MLS, Liga MX and LaLiga, who are partners of the event.

Revie also confirmed that the Forum will include a star studded session looking at the development of players, both in Mexico and globally, which will feature Gerard Houllier, former Liverpool FC Manager and now Head of Global Football, Red Bull, alongside Gaizka Mendieta and Carlos Alberto Torres. Torres is an ambassador for Soccerex and confirmed his attendance at the Forum via a specially recorded video message at the press conference.

Some of the topics to be addressed at the Forum include digital marketing, international growth, player transfers and the Hispanic influence on football business in the US.

Other topics to be addressed at the Forum include the impact of digital marketing in football, the international growth of the game, player transfers and the Hispanic influence on football business in the US.

Rodrigo Lopez Jurado welcomed Soccerex to Mexico and announced that Movistar will be partners of the event. He also spoke with former players Kikin Fonseca and Gaizka Mendieta about their experiences of Soccerex events and the impact they felt it could make on Mexico’s football industry.

With the support of key figures like Fonseca and Mendieta and football clubs such as Inter Milan, Manchester City, Manchester United, Barcelona and Valencia already signed up to join leading international brands such as Telefonica and Fox Sports, the Americas Forum will be a must attend event for anyone interested in doing business in the football industry.

For more information on the Soccerex Americas Forum, please go to, call +44 (0)20 8987 5522 or email

Source: Soccerex


Smart cities at RAID to share innovation strategies in Utrecht

RAID 2016 will take place at Jaarbeurs, the largest and most accessible venue in the Netherlands

The inaugural World RAID Congress, taking place at Jaarbeurs in Utrecht, the Netherlands on 31stMay – 1st June 2016, will be the largest cross-sector disruptive innovation event in Europe this year.

RAID stands for Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Internet-of-Things and Data – the technological mega-trends that are transforming the world today. RAID informs the industry sectors of Energy, Finance, Healthcare and Transport, with a special focus on Cities.

Aimed at cross-sector C-level business and city leaders, RAID is an opportunity to learn from peers and experts about how to cope and innovate in the face of disruptive changes to established business sectors.

Alongside technology providers, city leaders will demonstrate how they are investing in RAID technologies to advance economic and social development. 

The format will be one of cross-sector plenary panel discussions with VIP speakers on Day One, followed by dedicated streams for Auto/Transport, Cities, Healthcare, Energy and Financial Services on Day Two. 


Dedicated to sustainable development, transport and health

The Cities stream at RAID is set to begin with VIP addresses on “The Challenges and Opportunities of RAID for Cities”. 

A panel on “Energy in Transition” will discuss urban utilities for increased efficiency, smart and decentralised grids, RAID and urban renewables. 

A session on “Urban Transport” will look at the impact of driverless vehicles and car sharing, the challenges of intercity transport management, AI and Intelligent transport systems for traffic management. 

A panel on “Creating Healthier Cities through RAID” will examine how cities can integrate technology and health, while a session on “Urban Development, Security and Investment” will discuss how RAID technologies can make cities safer and economically stronger. 

To view the full agenda visit 


Join RAID, Europe’s largest cross sector disruptive innovation event

RAID will take place on 31st May – 1st June 2016 at Jaarbeurs, the largest and most accessible venue in the Netherlands, just 20 minutes from Schiphol Airport.  The host city of Utrecht is ranked by the European Commission as the most competitive place in the EU to do business.

The event is attracting a minimum of 500 attendees in its first year, with delegations confirmed from UK, China, Germany, France, US, Norway, Sweden and Denmark. 

RAID is organised by Cavendish Group, which also stages the International Capital Conference and Host City, in partnership with Jaarbeurs and with strong support from industry organisations in France, the UK, Germany, the Netherlands and China.

Register here for the go-to event for cross-sector disruption and to find out about speaking opportunities contact