More than 1,500 people from the retail property world met at Completely Retail & Leisure Marketplaces’ new home in Old Billingsgate Market for the first of this year’s two major dealmaking events.
The crowds – a who’s-who of the business – thronged the historic market building and spilled out onto the terrace next to the Thames to network, exchange ideas and move deals closer to completion.
For the first time, the event featured the new Soapbox sessions – a chance for expanding brands to pitch their requirements to agents and landlords. It proved to be a brilliant format with each brand given only three minutes to get their story across. During morning and afternoon sessions, a total of 18 brands stepped up onto the Soapbox to make their case while a few struggled to hit their time limit, the content was always compelling and a hugely efficient way of getting an overview of some great innovative brands.
All of which gave everyone an appetite – and a thirst – but thanks to the generosity of Tortilla, Corona and B&M there was no shortage of free burritos, beers and coffee. And at 4pm a further influx of guests arrived for the post-event evening drinks sponsored by Westfield and Meyer Bergman.
Thirsty (and hungry) work…During the event, delegates ate and drank:
900 Tortilla Burritos, 4000 Bottles of Corona, 1000 Litres of Pimms, 3000 Cups of Coffee, 600 Sandwiches.
As the sun set on a still packed terrace, Completely’s Dom Millar commented: “It really felt like the event came of age today. Crucially, we now have a substantial core of retailers attending the event – there were almost 500 here today – in addition to the cream of the retail property development and agency sector.
“This is the dynamic that we’ve always been focused on since the first event and we now want to build on this momentum to bring in more people from every area of the retail and leisure property business. “We are now planning to make the September Completely Retail & Leisure Marketplace even more essential and vibrant.”
The next Completely Retail & Leisure Marketplace will take place on September 30th at Old Billingsgate Market. Core sponsors for the event are LaSalle Investment Management, Cushman & Wakefield and The Gym Group. There are already 60 exhibition stands confirmed plus more than 600 delegates and we are catering for up to 2,000 delegates.