Advanstar moves event boss

Advanstar Communications has appointed a group events director in the wake of a shake-up of its UK operations last year.

Tess Pearson took up the role earlier this month. She will be responsible for all UK and European activity including the Brand Licensing Show, Applied Clinical Trials exhibition and a portfolio of conferences.

She was formerly event director at Advanstar's New York office and has been with the company for more than five years. Pearson will be based at the firm's London offices in Richmond, which opened in January.

New features at this year's Brand Licensing Show, which takes place at Earls Court from 26-27 October, include a sports zone with interactive demos, a food zone, and a fashion zone complete with catwalk.

The organiser booked 90% of stand space for this year's event at the 2003 show, where visitor figures jumped 30% to 4,700. The 2004 floor plan is expected to grow by 30% and visitors by a further 10% to 15%.

Pearson's appointment follows the sale of Advanstar's medical and automotive portfolios in December. The magazines and events went to Octomedia - a company formed by Advanstar's former European chief executive officer Simon Timm and Pearson's predecessor Karen Parks - and Ultima Media, which Timm set up with former automotive group publishing director Jeremy Richardson.

Advanstar UK general manager Helen Gardner said: "We are refocusing our European activity on the pharmaceutical, licensing and science sectors. We want to reinforce our commitment to those core markets."

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