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25 March 2021
The lessons learned during the year of the pandemic are no good if they are not put to good use. Transforming the physical events world into virtual venues and digital meetings cannot -and must not- remain as a mere solution to a socially distanced world but must rather evolve into a new way of understanding how we interact and that platform-based events are just as real and valid as the real-world conventions we all knew a and loved. With 40 years of experience in the events sphere, TOC Events took the hint to go digital and managed to transform the format of the maritime industry’s leading conference all over the world while still delivering the same unique high-quality experience, with top-level content and renowned speakers.
This 2021 is no different. COVID-19 is still as much a threat as it has always been, despite vaccination efforts around the globe. But the fact remains that the world’s population is far from going 'back to normal’ any time soon, and the benefits of staying home have proven to be many more than simply avoiding the virus. In this context, executives all over the world are still ‘grounded’ from flying and going back to their usual business trips that would take them to a wide variety of hotel conference rooms learning about the latest trends and talking over coffee or cocktails about business plans and so on. We may not get to share a drink or two, but we will definitely not miss out on the chance to chat. “The event landscape is changing. We at TOC now aim to combine virtual and physical assets to deliver value to our customers and keep the market connected. Our service menu will broaden and allow us to offer a multitude of routes to market for our stakeholders. Digital and virtual products are a critical part of the product mix, but we are also aware that the power of face to face is still as strong as it ever was. We look forward to returning to live events in the Autumn, starting with our flagship event TOC EUROPE. This will be closely followed by an eagerly awaited return to Latin America in partnership with our friends and colleagues at MundoMaritimo,” says Paul Holloway, Event Director at TOC Events Worldwide.
All the TOC conferences discuss the hot topics in the regional context, but somehow, COVID-19 more than emphasize differences has made the industry more in synch, kind of ‘we’re all going through this together’. The seafarer crisis, the container shortage crisis, vessel gridlock, automation, and other technological advances -such as AI, blockchain- in the midst of ‘accelerating digitalization,’ climate change, IMO2020, decarbonization, maritime traffic downfall, lockdowns, freight rate increase, drop in the economic performance of shipping, etc… these are all current issues that affect the industry, some date pre-COVID, some are because of COVID. Addressing these issues, discussing repercussions, sharing actions and solutions, are part of a healthy debate.
That is precisely the focus of TOC Global Showcase, TOC’s new virtual online experience for stakeholders in the port and terminal industry to come together, share experiences and expertise and map out solutions to common current and future challenges. “Continuing to provide the market-leading content from TOC, this global virtual event will showcase the latest innovations being implemented into operational processes in ports & terminals across the globe”, says the TOC Events organizing team that has put together a series of 10+ webinars streaming from 31st May to 18th June 2021, focusing on the most pertinent issues facing the sector alongside a plethora of other content including podcasts, interviews and equipment demonstrations.
Among the topics covered during the global showcase, there will be sessions dedicated to automation, digital transformation, standards, the green transition, PortWatch, market intelligence, Port Operations: Shaping the New Normal.
The leading conference for the maritime, port & terminal industry in Europe will return to Rotterdam, the Netherlands in September 2021 under a hybrid version, combining physical presence and virtual participation. The content agenda for all regional TOC Events, such as TOC Europe and TOC Americas will also consider the TOC Global Showcase pillars that encompass the main concerns for the industry today. Lima, Peru, will host the 2021 hybrid version of the conference in October, just as it did for the 2020 edition and 2017.