Tarsus acquires Connect Meetings


Tarsus Group plc has acquired 80 per cent of the issued share capital of Connect Meetings, a market leading US business travel and meetings event organiser, headquartered in Atlanta, GA.

Connect Meetings is a leading provider of trade shows in the United States, serving the business travel and meetings sector through a combination of national, regional and vertically focused events which are supplemented by a media offering and marketing arm.

Connect Meetings has developed and manages a series of events across the United States held throughout the year that bring together meeting professionals and planners with suppliers to the business travel and meetings sector.

The meetings are arranged on an invitation-only, appointment-based format for both suppliers and planners.

Connect Meetings live events (or Marketplaces) are exclusive and invite-only, bringing together a curated group of meeting planners with suppliers, including destination marketers, hotels, convention centres and technology providers, for a series of appointment-based discussions.

Business travel spending continues to rise in the US and has increased from US$234m in 2009 to an estimated US$310m in 2017, a compound growth rate of 4.3 per cent.

This growth has been supported by strong expansion in hotel stock and growth in US GDP over the period.

Connect 2016 Marketplaces – a combination of national, regional and vertically-focused events - are expected to have brought together more than 6,000 suppliers and planners, resulting in 85,000+ pre-set appointments.

Connect Meetings’s current CEO will remain in place, with an intention that he stay with the business in the long term.

Connect Meetings’s established senior management team will also be retained as part of the acquisition.

Douglas Emslie, Tarsus group managing director said: “Following the recent acquisition of Intex in China, which brought two world class exhibitions into the Group – Music China and CES Asia, we are delighted to be acquiring Connect Meetings in the US. The US and China are two of the world’s largest exhibition markets and both are a key area of focus for Tarsus. These acquisitions tick all of the boxes of our Quickening the Pace strategy. We are also pleased to have acquired Connect Meetings as companies of this size and quality are increasingly difficult to find.

“Connect Meetings is a strong brand, led by an entrepreneurial team with a track record of delivering exceptional growth. There is a great opportunity to quicken that growth further by expansion and replication within the US and other selected territories and to launch into new verticals. I would like to warmly welcome the Connect Meetings team on board.”