Tools that help shape events such as conferences, trade shows, product launches and fund-raisers, are rapidly developing into specialised SaaS products that will transform the efficiency of event management and everything around it.
A major shift is occurring in the events industry with an increased focus on audience engagement that involves attendees on multiple levels, often by combining education and entertainment. The ongoing digital revolution has reshaped many industries, with investment up till now largely focused on areas such as FinTech, MarTech and BioTech. However, the fast growth in the Event Tech market is sparking growing interest as more investors become aware of its potential.
The event technology that is used to entertain and engage today’s easily distracted guests has underpinned the rapid growth of many suppliers in the events industry. Event Tech has made it easier for entrepreneurs to establish small-to-medium sized businesses within local communities and for large event related corporations to innovate their offerings. All these event suppliers require efficient, cost-effective, income generating technology that will ultimately grow the industry.
The flow of communication from event professionals to event hosts to guests is also undergoing rapid digital development to increase engagement and efficiency in all areas, and hosts are eager to use Event Tech tools to offer the best live experiences.
The evolving complexity, rising cost, and amount of time it takes to organise exciting events has ignited the development of much needed technological solutions for the events industry. Successful start-ups in the EvenTech market have mushroomed recently, which has attracted big investment players like Vista Equity Partners. Savvy investors in high-growth SaaS focused companies, like Vista, have been expanding their portfolios with event related technology companies. And 2017 promises further investment opportunities with continued innovation in areas such as niche marketing solutions, virtual reality, and data integration.
Vista’s November 2016 acquisition of Cvent, a cloud-based event management company that offers software solutions to event planners, is an important milestone in the evolution of Event Tech. The $1.65 billion transaction is a clear bet on the growth of the event technology industry. At the same time, Cvent announced a merger with Lanyon, leading providers of cloud-based management software for corporate meetings, events, and travel programs, which further strengthens Event Tech’s profile in the investment market.
Vista has also made investments in tech companies that have more general, but no less important implications for the events industry. Marketo, a recognised leader in engagement marketing software and solutions, was acquired for $1.8 billion in August 2016. Vista also seized an opportunity to impact the SME environment positively with $25 million in series-C funding to Main Street Hub, a marketing platform for local businesses. All these investments show that there is a growing market for accessible, cost effective digital marketing solutions for SMEs, which of course includes events related businesses.
What is missing from the above Event Tech investment opportunities is one platform that connects every member of the event industry, from event management software companies to ticketing technology and every traditional category in between. Eventerprise is a global SaaS platform that is dedicated to filling that gap and making sure that event hosts or event professionals can find any type of event supplier with just a few clicks.