The Australian Sign and Graphics Association (ASGA) & FESPA HP National Conference, which was scheduled to take place in Sydney on 19 February, has been cancelled as a result of COVID-19.
In place of the conference, the ASGA will present a series of webinars this year.
ASGA president Julie Rochester said although disappointing, both the ASGA and FESPA boards decided that due to the continuing disruptions caused by COVID, it was best to cancel the conference.
“We were also concerned that we may not be able to match exhibitor and visitor expectations of the event if we were to go ahead in February,” she said.
“[But] with an ongoing demand for information and training, online webinars and training courses have proven popular in 2020. For this reason, it didn’t make sense to delay the delivery of the conference material. Instead, the ASGA will present a series of webinars in 2021, which we’re really excited about.”
FESPA Australia president Nigel Davies agreed.
“Although restrictions are lifting, conditions are still unpredictable and uncertain. Originally scheduled for the 1st of May 2020, we are very grateful for the patience of the sponsors and award entrants,” he mentioned.
On the other hand, both associations mentioned that the HP Awards For Excellence will continue to take place and has been rescheduled to 28 September in Melbourne, to the opening night of PacPrint21.
“Delaying the awards night to coincide with a major industry event makes sense. We believe that by September 2021, there will be minimal event disruptions due to COVID and there will be an eagerness for people to network and celebrate the industry’s successes in person,” Rochester said.
“As well as being a night of nights to recognise outstanding achievements in the industry, it will also be a great kick-start to Visual Impact / PacPrint21.”
Davies added that consultation with sponsors on this latest delay has been positive as too has initial feedback from award entrants.
“All 2020 awards finalists will receive a digital badge which can be utilised for marketing purposes until the category wins are announced at the presentation dinner, which we believe will be seen as a win-win for this latest postponement,” he said.
“Our industry has shown, more than ever, resilience, creativity, diversity and more importantly patience in adapting to the changes that have been forced upon us. However, we are finding that at last, there is an air of hope and optimism as we look towards 2021.”
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