London, England – The faltering world economy claimed a high-profile event with the cancellation of the 2010 British International Motor Show (BIMS), which is billed as the largest consumer show in Great Britain.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said March 19 that the unstable state of the European auto market made it too difficult to plan for the biennial event.
“The global credit crunch has placed the automotive sector under unique pressure and has created a level of uncertainty that deters manufacturers from committing to large-scale, international events,” said SMMT Chief Executive Paul Everitt.
The show was run by International Motor Industry Events, Ltd. (IMIE) and had been scheduled for July 23 to August 3, 2010 at ExCeL London. SMMT said it was “committed to showcasing the achievements and products of the automotive sector” but gave no indications if alternative events would be held.
Rob MacKenzie, joint managing director of IMIE, said the company agreed with the decision, but referred to the move as a postponement. “Given the great strides that the Motor Show has taken since its return to London, we fully endorse the decision to postpone BIMS until market conditions will again permit us to deliver a world-class event that truly showcases the U.K. industry,” he said.
The announcement came after what was considered a successful 2008 show in which attendance was reported up 14% from 2006 to more than 472,300 visitors. The exhibit area included 60 exhibitors, including 15 who were new to the show, spread out over 250,000 square metres of indoor and outdoor exhibit space, according to the SMMT.