Cable Tech

IBC 2020 canceled due to COVID-19

IBC has joined a growing list of major trade shows to cancel their 2020 events due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

IBC 2020 was originally set to run September 11-14 in Amsterdam, but show organizers decided to pull the trigger on the cancellation after determining there's still too much uncertainty about whether the event could be held safely this fall even as Europe assembles plans to reopen.

"Even as some governments announce the route forward, it has become clear that a return to (a new) normal is unlikely to be achieved by September," Michael Crimp, the IBC's CEO, said in a statement. "It has also become evident, through our dialogue with the IBC community, that an early decision is preferential for the industry so it can plan for the future. Right now, despite the best work of the IBC team and our Dutch colleagues, there are still many unknowns. Therefore, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to deliver a safe and valuable event to the quality expected of IBC."

IBC, a show with a strong focus on video and media technologies and services, drew almost 57,000 attendees last year.

With the on-site show for 2020 now canceled, organizers said they will continue to engage with the industry through its digital platform, IBC365, and will announce more details soon.

IBC could end up following the digital path taken by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) after its annual trade show, originally set for mid-April, was forced to cancel due to the pandemic. The organization replaced the on-site NAB 2020 show with an online event called NAB Digital Express, which took place last week.

Other major industry trade shows still set to take place later this year include Cable-Tec Expo. SCTE/ISBE president and CEO Mark Dzuban announced last month that the organization was still planning to host the event, which has added a workshop focused on lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic to be jointly produced by SCTE/ISBE, CableLabs and the NCTA – The Internet and Television Associations.

"We are continuing to monitor the situation while we work toward gathering the industry Oct. 13-16 in Denver," the organization said Monday in a statement to Light Reading. "We are following the guidance of CDC, the WHO and local, state and national officials, and are collaborating with our event partners and the cable telecommunications industry to present a best-ever Cable-Tec Expo experience in a safe, onsite environment."

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— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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