The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) annual conference in 2021 is going virtual.
BIBA 2020, scheduled to be held in May this year, was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The 2021 event will focus on strengthening the resilience of both the insurance sector and the UK.
Commenting on the decision to take BIBA 2021 virtual, conference director Lindsay Campbell said: “We were overwhelmed with the support given to us following the forced cancellation of BIBA 2020 and are determined to come back to give the sector a great event in 2021.”
“After much consideration around the current situation in the UK we have reached the conclusion that it is impossible and unwise for us to hold a physical event next May. However, we have invested in researching the means to bring you an amazing digital conference and exhibition experience at BIBA 2021.”
Next year’s conference will take place on 12 and 13 May via a customised platform providing artificial intelligence-powered, profile matchmaking to connect delegates with exhibitors easily and with the certainty of shared objectives, to make networking and deal-making easy.
Attendees will be able to schedule appointments, live-chat and video conference within the platform, making the experience as close to past BIBA events as possible.
The full line-up of keynote speakers and panellists for BIBA 2021 will be announced in the new year.
Steve White, chief executive officer of BIBA, said: “This has been the most challenging year that our sector and our customers have ever faced. What we have seen is the importance of resilience and how organisations, people and government will need to ramp it up in the coming months and years.”
Commenting on BIBA 2021’s theme, White described insurance brokers as “solution makers” that build resilience in their own businesses while helping their customers to weather the storms they face.
He said: “We intend to examine this, providing inspirational speakers and sessions where you can have your say. BIBA 2021 will help to drive a resilient culture and find a successful road through the challenges and changes brought about by, amongst other things, the pandemic and Brexit.”
Shaun Hinds, chief executive at Manchester Central, the venue where the BIBA annual conference is traditionally held, said: “The BIBA annual conference has been a real highlight of Manchester Central’s calendar for many years. Whilst we understand and respect the decision to shift the 2021 event to a digital conference, we know that all the delegates, exhibitors and visitors truly value the live experience that makes this event so unique. We can’t wait to welcome the association back to our venue, and our great city, in the years to come.”