It was simply a perfect match – PACIFIC 2015, the biennial Pacific International Maritime Exposition, and Sydney Exhibition Centre @ Glebe Island (SEC@GI).
As one of Asia Pacific’s most prestigious and comprehensive international maritime events, PACIFIC 2015 required a venue that would deliver a premium exposition and congress with the capability to host three interrelated events in a stand-out Sydney Harbour location.
Held 6 – 8 October at SEC@GI, PACIFIC 2015 attracted 494 exhibiting companies and the largest number of overseas naval delegations ever to visit the Expo, part of the 14,979 decision makers and key players in the maritime industry who attended the event. Both figures are records for PACIFIC.
“We set new participation records in our new venue with extensive international presence, strong business visitor profile and continued involvement from high level government and naval organisations. Significant business alliances were formed between providers of new technologies and services and potential buyers – it was a great success,” said Tom Bennett Executive Manager, Media of Maritime Australia Limited (MAL), organiser of PACIFIC 2015.
“The scale and multi-layered nature of PACIFIC 2015 presented complex operational challenges which were all met, thanks to the combined outstanding efforts of MAL, the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) and the SEC@GI team,” Bennett added.
SEC@GI has deep-water berths alongside it, which allowed the RAN’s warship HMAS Sydney IV to dock directly adjacent to the Expo. A mobile ferry pontoon – the Beatrice Bush – also moored at the Centre to provide an exclusive wharf for navy and other VIP arrivals. PACIFIC 2015 hosted a number of senior naval leaders from all over the world led by the Australian Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Tim Barrett and his overseas counterparts. Admiral Swift, Commander US Pacific Fleet, was one of a number of VIP speakers to address the VIP Lunch functions.
Two of the most advanced naval combat helicopters – the MRH-90 Taipan and the MH-60R Seahawk Romeo – were on display on the wharf next to HMAS Sydney IV, while on the bustling 15,600m² expo floor, exhibitors from 22 countries showcased a wide range of commercial maritime and naval defence technologies. Exposure to global opportunities was especially important for Australia’s innovative marine industry SMEs. Over 70 custom designed stands made the expo floor a feast for the eyes.
Two concurrent high calibre conferences – the prestigious Royal Australian Navy Sea Power Conference and the science and technology focused International Maritime Conference – were held in five purpose-built meeting rooms in the Centre’s 4,400m²Hall 4. In all, 18 conferences, symposiums, forums and seminars were held in conjunction with Pacific 2015.
“We have the largest indoor event space in the Sydney CBD – 20,000m² – which allowed the seamless integration of the conference spaces to the expo floor,” said SEC@GI General Manager Malu Barrios.
The large scale event also boasted an unprecedented, multi-faceted catering program which drew praise from MAL CEO Ian Honnery who said, “The catering quality and seamless delivery throughout several varied functions over the three days were commendable.”
Event catering featured VIP lunches hosted by Vice Admiral Tim Barrett and cocktail receptions at the specially built Sydney Room marquee, a dedicated conference delegate dining area which required 30 minute turnarounds, catering for 33 stands, organiser rooms and VIP suites, and daily closing drinks for 1,000 people.
Vice Admiral Tim Barrett attended the event finale, which ended on a festive note complete with fireworks and a ceremonial sunset band performance. Neighbouring communities enjoyed vantage points to the festivities.