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The UK Exhibition and Outdoor Event Industry in Numbers


What is the UK Event Industry Worth?

If you’re still unsure about that next exhibition stand or outdoor event stand then check out this handy blog post with loads of event industry facts and figures. The UK events industry is worth a whopping £42.3 billion taking into account direct spend by event delegates, attendees and organisers. The value of the UK’s event sector by direct spend is made up as follows:

  • Conferences and meetings £19.9 billion
  • Exhibitions and trade fairs £11.0 billion
  • Sporting events £2.3 billion
  • Music events £1.3 billion
  • Corporate hospitality and corporate events £1.2 billion
  • Incentive travel and performance improvement £1.2 billion
  • Festivals and cultural events £1.1 billion
  • Outdoor events £1.1 billion

There are in excess of 1.3 million business events held in the UK every year with just under £40 billion spent by those attending these events. For the purpose of this blog post lets concentrate on exhibitions and outdoor events (not that we are biased in any way).

Exhibitions and Trade Fairs

In 2010 exhibitions and trade fairs generated over £11billion in spend and contributed £5.6 billion in value added to the UK economy, equivalent to 0.4% of UK GDP. This activity supported 148,500 jobs in the UK, equivalent to 0.5% of the total employment. The exhibition sector brought in over 13 million visitors to the UK, in the same year over 265,000 exhibitors participated in events, with 20% coming from outside the UK. Exhibitors spent £2.7 billion on related goods and services to demonstrate at events. 

Outdoor Events

In 2010 the outdoor events industry generated £1.1 billion in sales. The UK is recognised by Europe and the USA as a world leader in outdoor events and every year we host over 7000 major outdoor events including agricultural shows, festivals, charity events and craft events.

Exhibition stands and outdoor event stands provide exhibitors with a unique outlet for their products and services. The Vivid Interface survey of exhibitors finds that, across all exhibitions, over a third of respondents expect to generate between £10,000 and £50,000 in additional sales, while trade exhibitors expect on average to generate over £800,00 in additional sales from attending an event.

For more information on how you can get the best from your next exhibition stand or outdoor event stand please call us on 01536 265823


FaceTime – The Economic Impact of the UK Exhibitions Industry, Feb 2012

Eventbrite Blog – An Introduction To The UK Event Industry In Numbers, August 2016



Exhibition Stand Stats

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Tags: Exhibition Stands, Outdoor Event Stands

Posted in: Exhibitions & Events,

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