IFEMA designing ‘new normal’ for events, targets Autumn reopening

IFEMA, the consortium behind Spain’s largest exhibition complex Feria de Madrid, wants to reopen in September and host more than 60 events in the last four months of the year.

Used as an emergency hospital at the peak of the coronavirus outbreak in Spain, the sprawling fairground aims to host numerous exhibitions postponed as a result of the health crisis.

Throughout the ongoing emergency, IFEMA has focused on keeping as many fairs as possible on the calendar to reduce the potential impact on the economy in the sectors represented.

However, the reopening is unlikely to look like ‘business as usual’.

IFEMA said it was ‘adapting to the limitations we expect will be imposed by this new situation’ by using ‘technology to control access to fairs and congresses to comply with capacity restrictions’.

Meanwhile it would be using on-the-spot testing equipment to take the temperature of people entering the building and using other physical distancing control systems and measures.

Other innovations included using virtual event technology where possible.

“In short, we are designing the new normal for events that will satisfy the coming health, safety and mobility requirements”, said Eduardo López-Puertas, CEO of IFEMA, who stressed. “the importance of IFEMA’s role in adding value to companies and helping to revive the economy. This work will assist with the recovery of the sectors while revitalising business tourism to boost hotels, restaurants, shops, transport and culture and entertainment”.

Meanwhile a digital campaign #KeepBeingUs aims to give visibility to the work IFEMA does to service society and the business sector and to focus on the efforts being made to get up and running again and to help companies resume operations. IFEMA will be offering safe spaces for public and business meetings that comply with all applicable current regulations.