The world’s largest underwater engineering event – Subsea Expo – which was shaping up to be the sector’s first post-pandemic, large scale physical event, is to be postponed due to the current coronavirus-imposed restrictions.
Organisers, Subsea UK, have announced that the 3-day conference and exhibition, along with the annual Subsea Awards dinner, will now take place on 25-27 May 2021.
Neil Gordon, chief executive of Subsea UK, says, “Unfortunately we have been forced to take the decision to postpone Subsea Expo. At the time of setting the February dates, we were confident that the worst of the global pandemic would be behind us. Given the current situation with COVID cases rising and restrictions being re-imposed rather than lifting, we seem to be going backwards and the ability to host a large-scale event in late February next year is becoming increasingly unlikely.”
“Postponing the event is therefore the sensible thing to do. We appreciate this will be disappointing for our exhibitors and sponsors but by working closely with the venue, P&J Live, and the industry we’ve been able to move the event to May 2021 when we can deliver it safely and secure maximum attendance from the UK and overseas,” continues Gordon.
When the subsea industry body announced the date, theme and call for papers, they had sought feedback from members and the wider industry which revealed that there was no appetite for a virtual event with exhibitors, sponsors and delegates very much in favour of a face-to-face event with the valuable networking this affords.
Subsea Expo will celebrate its 16th anniversary next year and already has over 40% of the exhibition space booked. The theme for the event will still be Oceans of Opportunity – harnessing the Blue Economy, and will explore how the UK’s underwater engineering industry can capitalise on the global blue economy, estimated to be worth USD 3 trillion by 2030.
Gordon adds, “With leading figures from sectors of the Blue Economy presenting at Subsea Expo 2021, the event is an ideal platform for companies to glean market intelligence and identify ways of developing opportunities in new market sectors. Much of this comes from the informal conversations in and around the exhibition and conference which is why we favour a real event over a virtual one. By pushing Subsea Expo back by several months, we will make sure that our exhibitors and delegates enjoy a safe and valuable event that will allow them to make meaningful connections and learn about the opportunities in the race towards net-zero, the green recovery, including hydrogen and CCUS, as well as the oceans of opportunity in the blue economy.”