Could you tell us something about the EVER Monaco trade show?

The EVER Monaco trade show, a professional and international meeting place on the theme of Ecological Vehicles and Renewable Energies, is a three-day event that has been taking place at the Grimaldi Forum Monaco (GFM) for fifteen years. In addition to its exhibition space with around forty stands, EVER Monaco also hosts high-level exchanges with scientific conferences that bring together researchers, academics and industry stakeholders. The event is punctuated by round tables that are open to all, bringing together personalities from the worlds of renewable energy and electric-powered vehicles.  Finally, EVER Monaco stands out for its unique events, such as the final of the METHA Europe competition organised by the Ecoles de l'Instituts Mines Telecom, or the organisation of the sixth edition of the “Riviera Electric Challenge, Cagnes for EVER”, a test of best practices that incorporates three countries: France, Italy and Monaco.

What were the objectives for this fifteenth edition? 

The EVER Monaco trade show usually takes place in May. This fifteenth edition was to have confirmed its evolution toward becoming a larger, more qualitative trade fair and the development of new major partnerships such as the one forged with the Yacht Club of Monaco for the “Responsible Boating” section of the show. Unfortunately, the health crisis forced us to postpone our event until the start of the school year in September, but all of us did our best to keep the show running in 2020, something that remained possible despite the difficult context.

What problems did you encounter during the postponement of the event? 

The major problem was to find a date. Subject to the great unknown of the post-isolation situation, we had to make exhibitors wait for a while before confirming the event. The problem was two-fold. The Grimaldi Forum, in fact, welcomes around a hundred events a year and most of the organisers of events planned for the spring wanted to postpone until the start of the school year in September and the autumn, as did we. On the other hand, exhibitors that were available in the spring had to be available in the autumn as well, something that was not easy!

In the end, even though to be totally frank we did lose a few exhibitors, the change of date was beneficial to us since we gained more than ten new ones!

How has the Grimaldi Forum supported you throughout this process?

I am very satisfied with the collaboration with the Grimaldi Forum. It demanded a great deal of flexibility on both sides. After having succeeded in choosing dates, we still had to think about the most suitable format for the show and whether the exhibitors would follow along. We changed plans several times. We even considered other areas of the Grimaldi Forum, both smaller and larger, to provide for all possible cases. In the end, though, and thanks to the enthusiasm of or exhibitors, we kept the initial space which was also in compliance with health standards. I really felt the enthusiasm of the GFM teams. EVER was indeed a milestone in regard to the resumption of professional events in the principality and breathed new life into all parties involved.

In this context, has the Principality of Monaco provided added value to your exhibitors? 

Yes, I am convinced it was beneficial to us; Monaco is widely recognised for its security. In addition, the Grimaldi Forum and EVER Monaco received the “Monaco Safe” label guaranteeing that visitors are welcomed with the greatest respect for current health standards. No exhibitor or visitor has expressed any concern in this respect. This label was really an element of additional attractiveness for the EVER trade show.

Finally, do you have an anecdote to recount? 

On the Tuesday before the event, my colleague and I arrived to settle into our organisational space. When we got there, the Grimaldi Forum teams were gathered in the reception hall to meet with Sylvie Biancheri, the Managing Director of the GFM. Having no other choice but to pass through this space to get to our offices, we tried crossing discreetly and, to our surprise, the 145 employees of the congress centre accompanied us on our passage with thunderous applause, expressing their joy at finally seeing the resumption of events. It really warmed our hearts considering that we really doubted the feasibility of this 2020 edition of the event just a few months ago. But our determination paid off and we managed to turn EVER Monaco 2020 into a great success!