IBC reported total attendance of 56,390 at the IBC2019 event held earlier this month at RAI Amsterdam — a small increase from the 55,884 who came to the show in 2018.
Despite the year-on-year gain, that figure is down slightly from 2017, when the show posted an attendance record of 57,669. But the organization said the result was still encouraging, noting that the number of young attendees (defined as under 35 years old) was up by 10% over last year, apparently demonstrating that the event is a draw for the next generation of broadcast professionals. “C-level” attendance was said to be up, as well — a good sign for those who hope to do real business with movers and shakers at the show.
IBC2019 took place over five days, representing a consolidation from previous years, when the conference and exhibition together took up six days. That seems to be the trend, as NAB 2020 will also be a day shorter than in previous years, running from Saturday through Wednesday, rather than Thursday, with the show floor opening on Sunday.
IBC worked especially hard to freshen up its program this year, debuting the young-broadcaster-focused “Next-Gen Hub,” launching the first Esports Showcase — complete with a Counter-Strike: Global Offensive shootfest — and handing out Social Impact and Young Pioneer awards.
The Social Impact Awards, recognizing “diversity and inclusivity, environmental impact and ethical leadership,” went to Turkish broadcaster TRT’s Journalism for Juniors initiative; the VoxA Omnichannel Engagement Platform, an emergency alert system for India’s coastal communities developed by Gaian Solutions for the Indian government; and London’s “green filmmaking” outfit Chouette Films. The Young Pioneer Award was given to Vera Bichler, the first female football (that’s European football, not American football) director at Austria’s ORF.
IBC’s highest award, the International Honour for Excellence, went to filmmaker Andy Serkis, renowned for his pioneering work in performance capture, both in front of and behind the camera.
IBC2020 is set to take place Sept. 11 – Sept. 15, 2020.