AIPC Delivers Ongoing Legacies Through Future Shapers Program

"The AIPC Future Shapers are sharing solutions to create a more productive and effective convention centre management industry."
31st Jul, 2023

AIPC’s second Future Shapers intake graduated on Tuesday 18 July, following a competitive on stage pitch to solve convention centre industry challenges, at the AIPC Annual Conference in Luxembourg.

In the grand finale of their eight-month accelerated leadership programme, two teams competed to convince the industry’s CEOs and senior leaders to invest in and choose their solutions to challenges currently faced by the industry.

AIPC Chairman Greg O’Dell said the association was proud of the results being delivered by the industry’s future leaders: “The AIPC Future Shapers are sharing solutions to create a more productive and effective convention centre management industry.

“With last year’s concepts already being invested in for application today, I know the ideas we heard during the conference will be tomorrow’s legacies. At AIPC, we are proud to be raising the skills of our high performing talent and sharing pathways to better industry solutions,” Mr O’Dell said.

Following a programme of masterclasses featuring member experts, global entrepreneurs, project managers, and motivational speakers, as well as opportunities to meet with industry mentors and build business paper writing and presentation skills, the Future Shapers each presented their individually developed solutions to industry challenges.

These ideas were voted upon by the Future Shapers and the top two ideas led to the formation of Team Visionary and Team E:QUAL, who were judged by the conference audience on innovation, presentation and their ability to outline their analysis of the product, market and financial viability.

AIPC CEO, Sven Bossu said while every participant contributed a range of applicable ideas, with many solutions overlapping with the top choices, only two made it to the final business paper development and pitch presentation to the conference delegates.

“I am delighted to announce Team Visionary, and their concept to develop a '4-D space visualisation tool to bring to life venue spaces and limitless configurations in real-time during client site visits and event planning', as the winner of the AIPC Future Shapers Annual Challenge.

“With the goal to increase the conversion rate of event enquiries by 15-20%, Visionary’s solution also aims to save on planning time and allows clients to up-spec their events by imagining every opportunity before the event is committed.

“I would also like to acknowledge Team Equal and their solution to develop a global membership community for event professionals to raise standards of health, wellbeing, welfare, safety, recruitment, and training.

“The AIPC Future Shapers Taskforce and I have witnessed the growth of each of the program participants. They have all engaged with the course and one another to collaborate on two exemplary solutions to challenges faced by our industry today that we anticipate will now also be practicably applied," Mr Bossu said.

Below are the thirteen graduates of the 2023 AIPC Future Shapers programme:

Team Visionary:

  • Arisha Sukaloo, Revenue Manager, Cape Town International Convention Centre
  • Arthur Mok, Event Manager, Hong Kong Convention Centre,
  • Dana Fish, Senior Manager, Business Development, International Convention Centre Sydney
  • Fiona McGibbon, Head of Sales, Levy UK&I at Scottish Event Campus
  • Katie Tinetti, Commercial Lead, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
  • Sathyan Chandrasekhar, Financial Controller, International Convention Centre Sydney
  • Wadhah A Al Harthi, Events Planner, Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre.


  • Kate Abbott, Head of Customer Experience, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
  • Jacqueline Elder, Operational Project Lead, Scottish Event Campus
  • Sibongiseni Gcelu, Executive Sous-Chef, Cape Town International Convention Centre
  • Laurel Gray, Senior Event Manager, International Convention Centre Belfast
  • Anna Szabo, Director of Business Development – International Hosted Events, HUNGEXPO
  • James Walker, Head of Technical, Scottish Event Campus.


The Future Shapers program supports the development of high performers within the AIPC community to think and act like leaders. This is the only program of its kind, unique to the venue management industry.

Participants are senior managers on a path to the highest leadership roles within their organisations. Through education, a community of peers and mentors, and a platform to perform, the program will support these future leaders to become future shapers of our industry.

The Future Shapers program supports the venue management industry to identify future venue leaders and prepare them for success by offering professional education and inspiration, an ability to demonstrate excellence and a framework that provides value creation for the entire AIPC community.

The Future Shapers platform allows high performers to connect, share and learn. The program adds further value to AIPC members, nurturing their top talent and providing another reason to remain in this dynamic and future focused industry.

The third edition of Future Shapers will be launched in October – details on the application process will be soon published.

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