Events industry stalwart, Toby Wand, has acquired Scotland’s ScotHot and Northern Ireland’s IFEX foodservice exhibitions via 365 Events Ltd – a company co-owned by Wand and events specialist, Billie Moore – from London-based Montgomery Group.
IFEX is one of NI’s longest-standing trade exhibitions and is home to 6,500 visitors every 2 years. The show hosts NI Chef of the Year and the ChefSkills competitions which see over 200 student and industry chefs compete over 3 days.
Showcasing food, drink, tourism and hospitality in Scotland, ScotHot welcomes 5,700 industry professionals to the SEC in Glasgow, with the event featuring the Scottish Culinary Championships and Scottish Chef of the Year.
Previously owned and managed by the Montgomery Group, Toby Wand – a former MD of Fresh Montgomery – has much experience, successfully directing both events, and many other major food, drink and hospitality events, over the last decade.
The last IFEX took place in 2018 at the Titanic Exhibition Centre, when the show was a sell-out with record visitor numbers. For 2020, the event was on track to exceed expectations before the arrival of the pandemic, when everything came to a halt.
As the pandemic took hold, IFEX was postponed and then cancelled. Now with the re-building of industry, and particularly hospitality businesses, IFEX will return in 2022, and ScotHot will return in March 2023.
Wand commented: “As the world of hospitality recovers and realigns post-pandemic, vibrant business events like IFEX and ScotHot will provide vital meeting places for the industries to reconnect, uncover new learnings and discover relevant technologies to improve their businesses and customer focus.
“These are hugely important events for the hospitality and foodservice industries in both Northern Ireland and Scotland, and I’m proud that 365 Events Ltd will now be well positioned to drive these events forward.”
Lori Hoinkes, MD of Montgomery Events commented: “It’s been our privilege to grow and nurture IFEX and ScotHot over many years into the vibrant and feature-rich events that they’ve been recognised for, with IFEX winning the AEO Excellence Award for Best Tradeshow Exhibition under 2,000metre² in 2016.
“The last 14 months have been extremely difficult for us all, but especially our colleagues in hospitality and the wider events industry. As we move forward at Montgomery Group, growing our biggest trade events across the globe, we’re delighted that the new owners have such strong experience in events, specifically in foodservice and hospitality. I wish Toby and Billie well with their future events as we all look towards a brighter future.”
ScotHot is scheduled for March 2023 at SEC Glasgow, with IFEX’s dates for Spring 2022 to be announced next month.