Seybold Events Cancelled

RENEE DIIULIO, SENIOR EDITOR
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San Francisco — MediaLive International has confirmed that the remaining 2005 Seybold Seminars have been cancelled, citing insufficient vendor and attendee interest. The event, which has a 30+year history, focused on new technologies for content management  and publishing workflow,   and drew editors, publishers, production managers, art directors and  IT professionals.  Registration fees for the event were a steep $1,995. Weak market conditions and the industry’s transformation from print to digital were partially responsible for the event’s demise.

The company will continue to support the print and Internet publishing markets with the bi-monthly The Seybold Report, according to Leslie Brand, Vice President, Corporate and Client Marketing for MediaLive. The portfolio also includes The Seybold Bulletin, a weekly online news summary.

No reference has been made to a strategic repositioning of the shows, unlike the company offered when it first postponed COMDEX  Fall  in  Las Vegas in June 2004. Though some COMDEX shows have been held overseas, the venerable show, once one of the largest, has not returned to the U.S.

Only one related event, COMDEX Greece, is currently on the MediaLive docket through September 2006. Of the 18 shows owned by Media Live  and listed on the company’s calendar of events, 11 take place outside of the U.S. with 7 in Japan.

Interop and VoiceCon, with 5 and 4 events respectively, comprise half of the currently scheduled events. Both brands are showing growth. MediaLive premiered VoiceCon Fall in August and expects to launch Interop New York in December and Interop Moscow next year.

The last Seybold event  was held September 11-14 at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Center in Chicago. It was co-located with PRINT® 05 & CONVERTING (SM)   05 at McCormick Place which are  produced by Graphic Arts Show Company and owned by NAPLNPES, and PIA. The PRINT  show is on a strong growth curve.  Exhibitor participation grew 7% and the show drew over 62,000 attendess to 750,000 square feet of exhibits.

Drew Miller was General Manager of the Seybold event series, hired this  past May after 15 years of experience with  Miller Freeman Publishing and Paperloop. Seybold Seminars was founded in 1971 by John Seybold and his son Jonathan.  John Seybold, who passed away in March 2004,  was called the “Father of Computer Typesetting.” He was the first in the world to tackle the entire process of editing, manipulating and formatting text  into commercial-quality published materials.

Reach Robert Priest-Heck, President & CEO, MediaLive International, at (415) 905-2300 or pbh@mlii.com.