PCMA Acquisition of CEMA a Win-Win

Frances Ferrante
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Sherriff Karamat, CAE, PCMA President & CEO

CHICAGO — The ongoing merger of the disciplines of business events and event marketing is reflected in a new partnership between The Corporate Event Marketing Association (CEMA), the premier community for event marketers, and PCMA, a network of business events strategists. The two parties are pursuing an agreement wherein CEMA will be acquired as a wholly-owned division of PCMA, effective in January.

CEMA came to life more than 30 years ago with the goal of providing event marketers a forum for education and innovation. Today, it is 800 members strong and includes event marketers from global brands such as Cisco and Oracle.

PCMA, formerly the Professional Convention Management Association, was incorporated in 1958 and has grown into an association of 7,000 members across North America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. With 17 chapters and activities in 30 countries, it bills itself as the global leader in business events. Its broader audience, including followers of its content, spans 50,000 people.

The relationship is a logical evolution of a strategic alliance cemented in January to introduce each organization to new audiences. CEMA members will soon be able to tap into PCMA’s research and have access to PCMA programs such as its Digital Event Strategist certification. Meanwhile, PCMA members can access CEMA’s community of senior corporate and technology event marketing experts as speakers and collaborators. Perhaps most important, PCMA members will benefit from connections with event marketers who have pioneered business events as omnichannel engagement platforms for their brands.

“Every aspect of our business, and the industry in general, are being redefined at this very moment,” said Sherriff Karamat, CAE, PCMA President & CEO. While the struggle has been obvious, there has been little focus on the enormous improvements and opportunities this time has provided. Our alliance with CEMA earlier this year proved to be high-value experience for both members and the PCMA organization. With their membership’s approval, we hope to include CEMA in the PCMA family and redefine the post-pandemic world of business events together.”

The final agreement is expected in January of 2021.

Reach Sherriff Karamat at skaramat@pcma.org or (312) 423-7210.