The Global Beacon Alliance Launches at IMEX | 18th April | Frankfurt

A new organisation launches with the intention of producing standards, governance and more credible information on the effective use of beacons and other location based technology in the global events industry. The Global Beacon Alliance (GBA) has been developed in partnership with PCMA and a series of international venues, destination and app providers.

Call for an organisation that offers more insight into the usage and mis-usage of beacons has been on-going for some time. The GBA was therefore developed by Toby Lewis, CEO of The Live Group, an event management company in the UK. Lewis will become the organisation’s Chair which will work directly with associations, venues, app providers, other event organisers and beacon suppliers.

The GBA, working in partnership with PCMA bought together a group of global leaders at PCMA Convening Leaders (January 16) to agree how such an organisation could add value to the industry and provide proactivity around the use of beacons at events. The meeting agreed that more information was needed as well as standardised practices and that this would best come from within the industry.

“We’ve been looking at creating an organisation around beacons for some time and have had a lot of conversations with the industry; the two things that are consistent are that beacons are here to stay, and that more information and guidance is needed,” comments Toby Lewis, Chair of the Global Beacon Alliance. “We wanted to create a body that could provide independent information, that could help create standardisation and best practice on usage, and that could provide a meeting place between app providers, venues and event planners.”

The launch of the GBA begins with a wider industry engagement at IMEX Frankfurt to gather more information and listen to voices within the meetings and events world on the usage and understanding of beacons. Information and best practice standardisation will then be produced by the alliance for industry comment and agreement.

“As an industry we’ve been too hit and miss with new technology and its created a lot of mistrust around otherwise excellent event resources,” concludes Lewis. “As an industry we need to be proactive and create ways to allow these new technologies to come into the market place in a fair and universal way; we don’t want another Wi-Fi debacle on our hands!” PCMA

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