June 10, 2021 | By Bronwen Largier

With continuing uncertainty in Melbourne – despite its lockdown set to lift tonight at midnight – Meetings & Events Australia (MEA) has postponed its national conference, Evolve, from July 1, 2021 until September 8.

The flagship live event hub for Evolve 2021 is Sofitel Melbourne on Collins, supported by satellite hubs in Sydney at Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour and in Brisbane at Sofitel Brisbane Central, alongside a virtual option for those who can’t join in person.

“It’s important to support live events and we want more delegates to travel to Melbourne to support the state, its venues and our sponsors, which is why we will still host Evolve 2021 in Melbourne in September,” said MEA Chair Nigel Collin.

“It’s a great opportunity for the industry come together and focus on best practice and rebuild confidence.”

Melbourne Convention Bureau Chief Executive Julia Swanson said there was no denying the latest circuit breaker had been disruptive.

“But we know the business events sector is incredibly resilient and ready to return to in-person events when the time is right,” she said.

“We welcome MEA’s continued support and leadership in championing in-person events and driving recovery of our industry. The Evolve 2021 live hub in Melbourne will lead this action and drive confidence in hosting and attending events which is right at the heart of this year’s conference theme Building Confidence through Best Practice.”

MEA’s annual industry awards ceremony, which will combine the state and national accolades for the first time, will round out the one-day conference in Melbourne on September 8.