Event in the spotlight: Citrix APJ Partner Conference

Forum Group successfully executed the Australiana-themed conference, complete with a Mick Dundee impersonator, repurposed Vegemite jars and Aussie wildlife.

Presented early in the 2019 event calendar, the team at Forum Group Events & Marketing produced the Citrix APJ Partner Conference with great success.

The Australiana-themed event was designed to launch software company Citrix’s 12 month business strategy to international partners, key stakeholders and regional representatives.

The details:

Event: Citrix APJ Partner Conference
Event dates: 25-28 February 2019
Agency: Forum Group Events & Marketing

The challenge:

Working in collaboration with Australian- and New Zealand-based clients at Citrix and the wider team in their Asia Pacific HQ in Singapore, the project team at Forum Group Events & Marketing, (led by Meetings and Events Australia’s National Event Manager of the Year – Stephanie Vercoe), was challenged to showcase the best of Australia to the Asia Pacific Japan (APJ) audience all within a limited budget.

After successfully tendering to deliver full event management services, Forum Group was given two months to plan and execute the multifaceted conference. The team’s project management skills and experience proved essential in producing the event for 350 delegates arriving from 16 countries.

Delegates raise a glass at the Citrix APJ Partner Conference

Collectively, Forum Group coordinated over 60 executive transfers, 60 hours of arrival meet and greets, an exhibition, simultaneous interpretation of the business program into three languages, 48 meetings across six breakout rooms, memorable social events including an offsite executive dinner at the iconic Matilda Bay Restaurant, an outdoor Australiana BBQ, Women in IT cocktail function and a gala awards dinner – all over four event days!

The execution:

To kick off the event, the Welcome Reception was a marvelous display of outback Australiana theming and an all Aussie style BBQ. Australian wines and beers featured exclusively on the menu and Milo tins and Vegemite jars were used as vases for native flora. Delegates were treated to an Australian wildlife encounter, meeting koalas, a python, wombat, and kangaroo joey. Forum Group created the script for a brilliant Mick Dundee impersonator who roved around and entertained the crowds.

Forum Group also delivered on Citrix’s ‘Game On’ conference concept, with thematic links to the Australian Grand Prix Formula 1 sporting event. The Citrix APJ Partner Conference presented a powerhouse line-up of internal and external VIP speakers and stakeholders who launched the upcoming year’s strategy and promoted the annual star sales performers competition to win highly sought after Formula 1 trip packages.

An Australiana theme was carried throughout the event

Crown Towers Perth, the conference headquarters, was home to the business sessions, Welcome Reception and gala awards dinner. Catering for the Asia Pacific delegations, the organisers offered simultaneous interpretation including Japanese, Korean and Mandarin languages.

AV quality and technical direction were a critically important part of delivering the conference sessions. Creatively utilising a 16-metre by 16-metre screen for the conference content and 6-metre diameter round screens for the logo projection, the technical delivery of the event was spot on.

Theming and branding were delivered to perfection with groups of delegates styled in colour-coded lanyards and shirts reflecting their region of origin. The conference logo and branding were carried through all mediums including signage, place cards, AV, event app, presentations and lighting.

Forum Group also organised the Women in IT satellite cocktail function at the Crown Towers Crystal Club. Presented as a platform to celebrate the contribution of the women attending the conference, the function provided them with an opportunity to connect with other female delegates.

Delegates got up close with Aussie wildlife

Quick turn-around

In an incredible operational feat, the team turned the plenary room around in as little as two hours in preparation for the gala dinner. The space was completely transformed when the team put in a dance floor, set up dinner tables each with their own floral centrepieces specifically created to reflect the delegates regional groups.

Inspired by the overarching Grand Prix Formula 1 conference design theme, black and white checkered flags featured throughout the dinner styling as well as pin spotting lights that highlighted the regional groups and their décor elements. Forum Group arranged for two local Perth acts to entertain the delegates including a divine Kylie Minogue tribute artist and the Diamond Road band.

The event was hosted at Crown Towers Perth

Wellness and sustainability 

Staff wellness and team building activities featured in the program with Forum Group organising the ‘Citrix Fit’ personal training session on the Wednesday morning, leaving delegates rejuvenated and ready to continue the conference sessions soon after.

Sustainable solutions were incorporated into the event delivery as Forum Group arranged for the Aussie beverage and food jars used in catering to be repurposed as floral vases. The team was conscious of hiring as many styling elements as possible to reduce custom production and the waste associated with it.

Logistics and transfers were an important aspect of the plans with the Forum Group team coordinating executive car and shuttle airport transfers across all days of the conference. The team opened the registration from Monday 25 February and managed all accommodation bookings for each VIP, delegate and stakeholder.

With such a complex program, Forum Group enlisted the assistance of their Perth-based event management partners E&C who became an extension of the core team.

A Mick Dundee impersonator was on hand to entertain guests

The results:

This event was extremely well received by the client, sponsors, delegates and stakeholders in attendance. Forum Group’s team delivered and key achievements include:

  • Only two months from planning to event execution;
  • 350 guests connected at the conference;
  • Delegates represented 16 countries;
  • The engaging event was delivered over three days;
  • The program included conference sessions, exhibition and social events.

Feedback from the client was extremely positive. Forum Group received the following response from Karo Esmaili, senior manager, partner marketing Asia Pacific Japan, Citrix Systems Asia Pacific.

“[We were] absolutely thrilled with how the event turned out. From the initial briefing session to actual event execution, the Forum Group team provided exceptional expertise, creativity and professionalism to help organise our largest annual event in Asia Pacific and Japan. This was labelled by many attendees as a ‘world class’ event and that wouldn’t have been possible without the outstanding commitment and execution delivered by the Forum Group team.”

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