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LCT Headed To Europe Next Year

Martin Romjue
Posted on December 5, 2018
Frankfurt, the German city with the big city skyline, serves as a major global financial and corporate hub that attracts business events and conferences from around the world. (Photos by Chelle Culp)
Frankfurt, the German city with the big city skyline, serves as a major global financial and corporate hub that attracts business events and conferences from around the world. (Photos by Chelle Culp)

It’s been evolving for years: An industry trade show and conference in Europe. In the last decade, LCT has drawn a steady increase of diversity in global attendees at the annual International LCT Show in Las Vegas, with many hailing from all over Europe.

The crowd at the international reception packs the events room, and stands as one of the most popular networking venues on the show schedule — no matter when or where it’s held. LCT has come to realize if so many European and foreign operators are finding regional affiliates partners and business leads at the Las Vegas show, why not add a forum and venue in the center of Europe?

First Show Abroad

After LCT Publisher Sara Eastwood-Richardson and events director Chelle Culp took an exploratory visit in early October, they scheduled Sept. 23-25, 2019 for the first official LCT Show Europe in Frankfurt, Germany. The three-day event will feature a schedule tailored to the uniqueness of the attendee mix and location, focusing on the demands and needs of European and global operators while enhancing affiliate connections worldwide among all operators. The target audience is owners of luxury transportation companies and tour operators. LCT projects several hundred attendees, with 75% hailing from Europe and other global regions and 25% from the U.S.

Technically, LCT Show Europe will be the second industry event hosted outside the U.S. LCT held a Canadian conference in Toronto in July 2008.

LCT has reserved a conference spot at the Messe Frankfurt fairgrounds, which consists of a series of convention halls and buildings. The site hosts the biannual International Motor Show Germany, also known as the Frankfurt Auto Show, which is the busiest automotive exhibit in the world. The show, held there in September of odd-numbered years, will be held Sept. 12-22, just before LCT Show Europe. The timing gives U.S. operators the opportunity to attend both and double up a European vacation and/or business trip to visit continental affiliates.

Frankfurt has long stood as a convenient global gathering hub for all types of businesses, industries, and events. The modern city with skyscrapers, mostly rebuilt after World War II, is a financial and corporate global center with the seventh busiest airport in the world, which has direct connections to major U.S. cities. Since most residents and expatriates speak English as a second language, Frankfurt draws trade shows and conventions with its cosmopolitan, unitary atmosphere.

Still in the early planning stages, LCT Show Europe will likely include exhibits, general sessions, offsite dinners and receptions, and excursions. Ideas being considered are a trip to the Heidelberg Castle, about 55 miles south of Frankfurt, and to the Mercedes-Benz factory in Stuttgart, about 125 miles south of Frankfurt. The city is a two-hour drive from primary destination points in Italy, France, and Switzerland, and there are also thousands of castles within a few hours. The capital of the province of Hesse also lies to the east of the Rhine River Valley region known worldwide for its winemaking, just like the scenic Napa and Sonoma regions in California.

To advance and plan the event, LCT has lined up an advisory board of international operators from Germany, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Hong Kong, France, Ireland, United Kingdom, Greece, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Spain, and the United Arab Emirates. The advisory group and LCT staff are working together on an agenda that speaks directly to most European chauffeured transportation operations, which consist of small fleets. Unlike in the U.S., a European fleet of 20 vehicles is considered large.

The world-renowned Rhine River region boasts numerous medieval castles, churches, and hamlets complemented by thriving wineries and river tourism.
The world-renowned Rhine River region boasts numerous medieval castles, churches, and hamlets complemented by thriving wineries and river tourism.
A Niche Industry

That makes the European industry more of a boutique niche compared to U.S.-style chauffeured and black car companies and networks. European operators are known for their sophistication and pride in luxury and personalized service. Due to the proximity of so many geographically smaller nations compared to the U.S., the industry is more collaborative and reliant on networking. Companies are used to working among different borders, currencies, customs, and languages.

The go-to sedans of choice for most chauffeured car companies are Mercedes-Benz models, with BMW, Volvo, and Audi in the mix as well as minivans and Sprinter vans. Black vehicle operators do not run buses and coaches in their fleets, preferring to team up with charter motorcoach operators. The market generally does not attract minibus and cutaway models common to American fleets.

One of the primary purposes for LCT going to Europe is to strengthen business relationships among European operators and their American colleagues while offering B2B education that addresses their challenges. Like many small fleet U.S. operators, European counterparts are looking for more knowledge and technological advancement. Among the common issues and how-to topics that could provide likely subject matter for seminars: Mobility, regulations, client communications, business practices, technology, and how to improve bonds with motorcoach operators.

Regardless of borders and cultural traditions, businesses need to make and save money while always providing high quality service.

FAST FACTS: LCT Show Europe

Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Dates: Sept. 23-25, 2019
Conference facility: Messe Frankfurt trade fair
Format: Sessions, exhibits, receptions, excursions
Expected attendance: Several hundred
Website: www.lctshoweurope.com
Sponsorships: Auto manufacturers, vendors, and luxury transportation operators
INFO: LCT sales/events, (253) 983-0515

2019 International Motor Show Germany

(IAA: Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung)
Location: Frankfurt
Dates: Thursday, Sept. 12 to Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019
Audience: Professional visitors and general public
Exhibitors: 994 (2017)
Visitors: 931,700 (2017)
Countries represented: 35 (2017)
Rank: No. 1 Largest Car Show In World
Founded: 1897
Information

Related Topics: automakers, Europe, European operators, German operators, Global operators, industry events, international, international business, LCT Events, LCT Show Europe, networking, OEMs, tradeshow preparation

Martin Romjue Editor
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