Everyone is familiar with one side of Stuttgart’s story—its fame as the birthplace of the first car and its dominant presence in the automotive sector. Yet, there’s a less explored narrative that’s now emerging.
There’s a lot happening in Stuttgart right now, especially in its transformation into a leading destination for sustainable events.
Attending Urban Future event
A prime example of Stuttgart’s green transformation is the Urban Future event I attended last June. It drew over 2000 participants dedicated to sustainable urban development. I listened to speakers discuss efforts to make the city livelier for its residents.
One of the sessions I attended was called ‘If Stuttgart must not become Detroit, what will it become?’ and it highlighted city transformations that can be seen also in Stuttgart.
The city attracts new talent to avoid population decline and brain drain and besides the automobile industry there are other clusters in the Stuttgart region. These include quantum computing, green tech, medical technology and AI.
Munich is a prime international MICE destination. It’s a superbly connected and modern city where tradition meets a cosmopolitan lifestyle.
Today Munich welcomes a new venue highlight with the opening of the Munich Marriott Hotel City West.
The hotel brings an additional 398 rooms to Munich, along with 2,326 square meters of event space. Only a few hotels in Munich offer such a large capacity in both rooms and event space, making this hotel’s size a game changer for the city.
The 15-Minute City concept is the biggest trend right now in the events industry. It refers to creating urban environments where residents can access their essential needs within a 15-minute walk or bike ride from their homes.
This trend is gaining popularity as more people seek to:
- Reduce their carbon footprint
- Enhance their overall well-being
- Have deeper community engagement
While the concept applies to private lives, it has a big influence on the events industry, too.
Siemens Healthineers, a healthcare company, acquired Varian Medical Systems, a company with a mission to create a world without fear of cancer. The merger was completed in April 2021 and to launch their combination, the executives of both companies organised an event called The Combination of Siemens Healthineers and Varian – Day One Digital Event. The event aimed to achieve a feeling of unity among all colleagues, which was especially challenging given the different cultures and sizes of the two companies.
The event team, made up of professionals from both Varian and Siemens Healthineers, faced several challenges, and despite these challenges, the team was able to come up with creative solutions to create an emotional and engaging event which was inspired with their combined potential of saving lives. This project was a sub-project of a larger workstream that spanned all internal and external communications channels and addressed all internal and external stakeholders from both companies.
The Global Event Team at Siemens Healthineers is led by Eszter Mattiassich-Aszody, who brings a wealth of experience as Head of Global Events and is committed to elevating the team’s offerings to new heights. Her team is a dynamic group responsible for delivering end-to-end digital, hybrid, and onsite events for both internal and external audiences. Based in Erlangen, Germany, they are dedicated to developing events on a global scale, with a focus on innovation and excellence and are dedicated to creating impactful experiences for attendees.
When I was invited to be part of the jury at the International Corporate Events (ICE) Awards, I jumped at the opportunity. I was really excited to join this international jury, as it gave me a front row seat to see what some of the best corporate event planners are doing, but there was another reason. This year was the first time that the ICE Awards took place in Germany, after six successful editions in London. The awards ceremony took place in Munich, which is one of my favourite cities in Europe. It’s always a pleasure to visit Munich, and the awards were in June, which is mid-summer, so that was a bonus.
I was blown away by the quality of the events and their execution. I judged two categories: Best Customer Experience – Live; and Best Transformational Change. I read through all the submissions, narrowed down my selections to three finalists in each category, and then got together with the other judges to choose the winner. There were so many excellent entries that it was hard to pick just one, but eventually we decided on SAP Sapphire 2022 in the Best Transformational Change category, and Siemens Energy Business Conference 2022 in Best Customer Experience – Live.
SAP Sapphire 2022 event stood out for the way they ‘retired’ the old event format and designed a novel event concept to adapt to new times and changing customer needs. This is a prime example of what you can achieve if you have vision and are willing to make big changes to bring that vision to fruition.