Speaker Bios

David Boon, General Manager International Business Development, Brussels Expo, Brussels (Belgium)

David Boon

David Boon has joined the Brussels Expo Group in 1994 and is responsible for international business development. Prior to this function he was responsible for a portfolio of events at BFE - Brussels Fairs & Exhibitions, which was a subsidiary in the past from the Brussels Expo Group. Prior to that, David worked in various sales and operation roles within the Brussels expo Group. He has a degree in export management. David has been with the Brussels Expo Group for 21 years.

Mark Brewster, CEO, Explori (United Kingdom)

Mark Brewster

Mark is CEO and founder of visitor satisfaction research specialists, Explori. In this role he works closely with exhibition organisers who know that visitor and exhibitor experience is key to their success. With clients including ITE, Informa, Clarion Events, Reed Exhibitions and Messe Frankfurt, Mark and his team help organisers around the world understand and refine their visitor experience.

Luca Favetta, Regional Business Director EMEA, Professional Convention Management Association PCMA (USA)

Luca Favetta

Since January 2017 Luca Favetta serves as Regional Business Director EMEA at PCMA (Professional Convention Management Association) and is responsible for developing PCMA Brand and Educational Services in the Region. With broad experience in Integrated Marketing Communication, Strategic and Operational Events Management Luca Favetta is a recognized leader within Meeting and Travel Industry and related Professional Associations. He is focused on strategic event planning, logistic operations and vendor management and is highly skilled in managing large-scale events, hospitality programs and sponsorships. With 25+ years of Corporate events experience, Luca has previously served as Senior Director Global Events and Programs at Hewlett-Packard International as well as Senior Director Global Events EMEA at SAP SA. He seats on the advisory board of EuBea (European Best Event Award) and has also served as a faculty member at Master in Tourism Management, IULM University Milan, Italy and at ECM (European Cities Marketing) Summer School.

Arun Madhoc, CEO, Suntec (Singapore)

Arun Madhoc

Mr Arun Madhok is the Chief Executive Efficer of Suntec Singapore and Suntec International. Mr Madhok joined Suntec Singapore in 2009 as the Director of Business Development and was promoted to the position of Chief Operating Officer at the beginning of 2012. Mr Madhok had spearheaded the review of the venue’s operational activities and implemented changes, enabling the venue to maintain its reputation as a world class venue. He has also been instrumental in developing and leading the modernisation programme that was completed in 2013.

Prior to his appointment at Suntec Singapore, Mr Madhok had garnered extensive experience in the airline and computer industries. His expertise includes strong change management and strategic planning in the area of business development, customer service, operations and information technology. His strong business acumen led to significant growth in several major new markets across Eastern Europe, Mediterranean and North Africa during his tenure with British Airways.Mr Madhok is a graduate of the Spicer Memorial College and the Osmania University in India.

Denzil Rankine, Executive Chairman, AMR International (UK)

Denzil Rankine

Denzil Rankine is Founder and Executive Chairman of AMR International, the world-leading strategy consultancy firm that is guiding the transformation of the events industry. His experience spans over 30 years of advising companies globally on strategic development and acquisition.

Denzil has been involved in all the major deals in the events industry around the world over the past two decades, as well as dozens of smaller transactions. His work has also supported the turnaround and transformation of organisers in Europe and the Americas, as well as numerous other growth and performance improvement initiatives. Denzil is recognised as a thought leader in the events industry and is a regular speaker at events industry conferences. He is the author of six M&A related books, including Commercial Due Diligence - A guide to reducing risk in acquisitions (Financial Times), Why Acquisitions Fail (FT Prentice Hall) and Acquisition Essentials (FT Prentice Hall).

Dr. Stefan Rief, Head of the Competence Centre Workspace Innovation, Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO (Germany)

stefan rief

Stefan Rief studied Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Stuttgart and received his doc-torate in occupational safety from the same university. Mr. Rief is Head of the Competence Centre Workspace Innovation at the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO. The centre´s research activities focus on the effects of spatial and technical work environments on performance, motivation and well-being. Based on these results, the scientists of the Competence Centre are developing innovative concepts for office buildings, innovation and educational centres as well as hotel environments. Mr. Rief is co-author of various publications such as “Working Environments 4.0”, “Future Hotel SmallMedium” or the book “The Fascination of Coworking – Potentials for Companies and their employees“.

Matthias Schultze, Managing Director, German Convention Bureau (Germany)

matthias schultze LR

Matthias Schultze is the Managing Director of the GCB German Convention Bureau e.V., which is the central marketing organisation representing the meetings and events destination Germany. Matthias Schultze studied business management at Heidelberg Hotel Management School and started his professional career in the hospitality industry working for various hotel chains. He has been an executive board member of the World Conference Centre Bonn. Matthias Schultze has held the position as Vice President of the European Association of Event Centres (EVVC).

Deborah Sexton, President & CEO, Professional Convention Management Association PCMA (USA)

deborah sexton-LR

Deborah Sexton joined the Professional Convention Management Association in March 2005 as President and CEO. In conjunction with this role, she also serves as President of the PCMA Education Foundation and Publisher of Convene magazine. Under her leadership, the organization’s membership is at an all-time high. It is a financially successful organization exceeding revenue goals annually and the PCMA annual meeting has broken attendance records for the last 5 consecutive years. A 30+-year veteran of the meetings and convention industry, Deborah previously served as President of the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau [now Choose Chicago]. She is also a past Chair of the Convention Industry Council, and the Foundation Board of Trustees of the International Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus. She is an active member of the American Society of Association Executives, and on the board of the Center for Exhibition Industry Research [CEIR.]