Digital Signage Summit Europe Draws Big Crowd In Munich

May 23, 2024 by Dave Haynes

I am in Munich, Germany this week for the Digital Signage Summit that the consultancy and publishing company invidis has put on for many years in its home city, which explains why the volume of posts is maybe down a bit.

This is my second time here, and it continues to impress me as a model that could and probably should be used by the industry for North America. The event runs for two days at a Hilton directly located at the city’s airport, which makes it very easy for attendees to get to and from, and effectively puts them on an island for those two days.

If this was in the city, people would scatter to various bars and restaurants for dinner and drinks, and overnight at a variety of hotels. At this event, pretty much everyone stays at the Hilton, eats here, and hangs out in the evening at the bar.

At big events, I see CEOs in a corridor and don’t do much more than shake hands or hug, and have quick chats. Last night, I had long, long chats with those folks, and also met a pile of people who also had time to socialize.

I don’t have a headcount but can say the opening session and keynote was jammed. My friends at invidis put a lot of effort and money into the way it all looks and works. This is not some presentations run in a banquet room, down a back hall of a hotel. The event starts in the hotel atrium, and the mini-trade show runs through that atrium and into the meeting room hallways.

The main sessions are run with a giant fine pitch LED as the backdrop and the AV team at the back was five or six people, at least. The principals at invidis are front and center for the event but the summit’s other organizer/owner is Integrated Systems Events, which is also Munich-based and runs ISE in Barcelona for owners AVIXA and CEDIA.

Google is a main sponsor and some big manufacturers like Samsung, PPDS and Dynascan have stands … not ISE-level stands, by any means, but a lot more than draped tables.

I was run off my disappearing old-guy butt all day, and didn’t have time to take notes. But I recorded a few sessions and will throw those into Otter to get crappy but passable transcriptions AI’d for me. I also moderated three sessions and have the audio files for use as future podcasts.

The funny one was cybersecurity, which I will freely admit is not a subject I know well. But we had a good discussion, nonetheless. I just had to ask semi-intelligent questions, which helped.

I have three more sessions this morning, so busy-busy again.

It’s a bit surprising there aren’t more people over from the US and Canada, but Q1-Q2 is full of trade shows and flying over is not cheap. If those wanting to go are not execs at companies, requests for budget and time to fly to Europe might get greeted with suspicion … as Munich is lovely and a one hour train ride puts you in the Alps.

That said, there are several folks here like Jeff Weitzman of Navori, Marc Kline of Screenfeed, Rick Mills of CRI and Alan Kaufman, who runs Dynascan. Industry vet Steve Nesbit, now 74, also made the trip, as he advises CRI.

Late to bed and up too early, but time to get myself together for day two!

Here are some pix shot by an invidis photographer …

More pix here …

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