Last week marked an epic “first-time” for IPPAG: as we hosted our first Virtual Partner Supplier fair.
To our deep regret, we haven’t been able to meet as usual @PSI and we know that the April @HKTDC fairs are unlikely to happen for a second year: so we needed to reinvent.
And to be honest: when we first started considering a virtual space as an alternative to our annual gatherings with our Partners: we weren’t very convinced or keen. Within the multitude of online events and formats that have sprung up these past months: we weren’t sure where we fit in, or whether we even wanted to.
However, we’re super pleased to report that whilst ‘online’ will never replace ‘in person’: if you embrace it as an opportunity, really rethink and reset your objectives AND find the right platform to enable them: ‘online’ definitely has its merits…
Our virtual fair hosted on the Hopin platform (https://hopin.com/): adapted to and optimised the way we connect. During the course of a day, IPPAG participants from all around the world (and many more than those who would normally travel to attend our events): had a beautifully curated space where they could visit our Partners virtual booths, get all the latest on product ranges and new designs / attend a series of seamless and well moderated live sessions according to their interests / interact and conduct one on one meetings with the people they needed to talk to.
All within the space of a few hours, across time zones, on an easy to use and fun platform.
The objectives we had set were for each person attending to: learn something new (educational content and industry focused speakers) / find a new product they had never seen (partner supplier expo space) / and to start or strengthen their collaboration (online chats and one to one appointments), but also… and most importantly… to ENJOY themselves…
The feedback has been tremendous…
“best virtual fair I have attended (and I have been to a lot)…”
“beautiful organization and experience which comes as a fantastic surprise, well done”
“unbelievably great performance today: from the idea to the implementation”
So looking back at where we started: we’re really proud of this achievement, and would like to thank the 250 people that took part!
IPPAG is committed to creating and delivering value for its members and partners and for our industry, at a time where we all need it most. So here’s to a very successful first, which will by no means be the last!
Like other organizations all over the world, the Coronavirus pandemic has disrupted our ‘usual’ way of doing things…
For us, this has meant not holding our annual meetings.
But being online, doesn’t mean not being together!
Instead we have been challenged to find new and in fact better ways to continue to “share / exchange / have vision / and care” all together.
Since March: IPPAG members have never been so connected.
Our monthly group calls became weekly and we’ve hosted a series of innovative and inspiring online events.
We alternate between internal catch-ups and inviting in external speakers from within and outside our industry to gain extra perspectives.
We’ve used facilitators to transfer processes online, with the advantage of opening up our circles to include people who wouldn’t normally attend our physical meetings.
And most importantly: we’ve all been supporting each other, learning from each countries situation.
And just like in our physical meetings: we’ve also sparked a bit of magic along the way: looking beyond the current pandemic to the future we can all create together:
“Togetherness as a lifeline: for IPPAG and its members to survive… and thrive… How can we help each other meet the future?”
THE IPPAG CARBON TRACKING INITIATIVE
We have created an internal ‘Carbon Tracking Tool’ to be used by all IPPAG members: to calculate / demonstrate / compare / reduce / and compensate the carbon emissions related to the products that we propose and sell. Through meticulous calculations: we are accountable and responsible for our emissions… We are « on track » towards a lower carbon impact.
For IPPAG and its member companies: Sustainability is about making better choices:
One product at a time… Day by day… Action by action… Choice by choice…
By making BETTER product choices, and continually improving our supply chain: We are « on track » to a more Sustainable Promotional Items Industry
The goal is clear : IPPAG and its member companies are « on track »
The IPPAG Board is pleased to welcome its newly appointed Board Member: Ms Geanina Ioan
Founder and CEO of our Romanian member company Chilli Ideas, Geanina’s skills, talents and experiences will provide valuable perspectives and bring new energy to the table .
We look forward to her contributions as the IPPAG Board continues to work on achieving its objectives and enhancing value for its members.
The IPPAG Board is currently chaired by Mr Thomas Davidsson from Sweden, who is also seconded by Mr Wolfgang Boasch, Austria and Mr Byron Chavarria, Guatemala.
What if 2020 was the best of times to connect?
When 2020 started, like many organizations: we were caught up in a whirlwind, and everything we had taken for granted was turned upside down.
For IPPAG: this meant not being able to hold the annual meetings that regularly bring our member companies together from all around the world.
And it also meant that these member companies were struggling, and that we needed to be there for them more than ever.
So we focused on taking ‘intensive care’ of our member companies, and put other projects, like integrating new members, on hold.
6 months later and 6 months wiser:
we’ve realized that 2020 and the year ahead are in fact the best of times to open the doors of our group, and travel to new territories!
2020 has in fact been a fantastic year for IPPAG…
We are more active, and creating more value for our member companies than ever.
Our four pillars “IPPAG shares, IPPAG exchanges, IPPAG has Vision, and IPPAG Cares” are proving to be essential.
So: we’d like to offer you the opportunity to join our organization.
No company should be alone in these times.
And despite not being able to hold physical meetings, as a global organization spread over all continents:
collaborating online efficiently and creatively has become our day to day.
We’re offering special first time membership conditions for 2021 and would be delighted to discuss this with you: firstname.lastname@example.org
For their 2019 annual meetings: IPPAG members from all around the world converged in India, at the invitation of Gifting Ideas
In line with IPPAG’s focus for the year, General Manager Florence Mosnier had drawn up a program centering on Sustainability. Members from all IPPAG countries have fully recognized the upmost importance of this issue. We see this impacting end-user and client behavior in all markets, and personally affecting our member companies: our managers and their staff at all levels.
IPPAG is endeavoring to embrace this global call for Sustainability: by raising awareness, providing guidance and helping its members, but also all its partners, to step up to the challenge. We seek to drive positive change throughout our industry.
Within the breathtaking setting of the Neemrana Fort in Rajasthan and building on the strength and value of local knowledge: the group welcomed a selected panel of Indian Partner Suppliers: and listened to their perspectives on what Sustainability means to them, and how this is incorporated into their businesses.
The conversation was then directed towards the Indian mindset of ‘Jugaad’ or ‘Frugal Innovation’ which is highly relevant and inspirational in the context of bettered Sustainability. As a country, India has always operated with this mindset: ‘seeking opportunity in adversity / doing more with less / thinking and acting flexibly / and keeping it simple’.
Members were able to apply these principles to their own processes, particularly regarding product selection: by co-creating a ‘PLE(A)SE be more SUSTAINABLE’ scorecard: a thought process that can be applied to all product choices by looking at ‘Packaging / Location / Essentiality / Alternatives / Story / and End of life…’
Making better choices, product by product, combined with an unwavering focus on ‘Audience – Intent – and Purpose’ is the key to more Sustainable practices within our Industry, and IPPAG is supporting its members, partners and suppliers to do so.
The week continued with member testimonies on their latest company highlights: again with a focus on Sustainability: sharing internal plans, client campaigns, and supplier collaborations.
IPPAG’s annual Autumn meeting is also the opportunity to dig deep into how each of our member companies are led: and the week culminated in a workshop orchestrated by a renowned Indian speaker Nilima Bhat, a leading figure in the Conscious Capitalism movement and author of ‘Shakti Leadership’: a concept that reaches into ancient spiritual and mythical teachings: to revive feminine qualities in leadership: generative, cooperative, creative, and empathetic. As explained by IPPAG’s Chairman Mr Thomas Davidsson (Wackes AB, Sweden): ‘with Sustainability as the top challenge for our industry, and being in India: we felt that it was the right time and place to explore this theme. A well-known quote from Albert Einstein says that ‘No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it’ and this was perfectly experienced throughout our week in India.’
For General Manager Florence Mosnier, who was also celebrating her ten years with the group, with its wide scope of activities and committed efforts, IPPAG is truly embodying its four pillars:
‘IPPAG shares, IPPAG exchanges, IPPAG has Vision and IPPAG Cares.’
‘Our India meetings were the culmination of several years of discussions on the future of our industry and how each and every individual can and must play their part. Leaders are those who ‘know the way, go the way and show the way’: which is what IPPAG stands for in this industry.’
During IPPAG’s Annual General Assembly in Hong Kong on April 26th, with members assembled from 33 countries: a new IPPAG Board was appointed.
Mr Thomas Davidsson (Wackes,Sweden), is taking over as IPPAG Chairman from Mr Thibaut Fontaine (mcs Kick&Rush, Belgium) after the completion of his four year term.
Also elected, and joining Mrs Fanny MARTIN (Versopub, Mauritius) on our Board are : Mr Wolfgang Bosch (Mitraco, Austria) and Mr Byron Chavarria ( Gimmick Company, Guatemala)
Alongside his Board members, and the IPPAG central office, Thomas Davidsson will be steering IPPAG within the new paradigms of our industry and global economy: with a chosen focus on Sustainability. Under his guidance, IPPAG continues to create a forum for its Members and Partners to think big and expand their perspectives: uniting the best minds in our industry, and designing the future.
#IPPAGshares #IPPAGexchanges #IPPAGhasvision #IPPAGcares
The 2018 IPPAG Convergences Awards: we have our winner!
At IPPAG, we want to: act more… / act better… / act differently…
… by investing together to offset our activities and give back.
That’s why, this year, we have teamed up with Convergences: an international think-tank focused on advocacy and mobilisation to promote the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the development of a “Zero Exclusion, Zero Carbon, Zero Poverty” world.
Projects were submitted from around the world, and out of these: 25 were qualified for the 2018 IPPAG Convergences Awards. After a phase of online voting from the public, our Jury composed of public, private, institutional and charity sector representatives shortlisted 5 projects, which were all further reviewed during a semi finale.
We are therefore now delighted to announce that the winner of the 2018 IPPAG Convergences Awards is ‘PROJECT WEEECAM’ a sustainable e-waste recycling initiative in Cameroon.
WEEECAM received the award during a ceremony in Paris at the annual International Convergences Forum on September 3rd, and will also benefit from a financial grant, on-going support from IPPAG and Convergences: visibility, networking and mentorship…
The WEEECAM project aims to design and set up a large-scale, sustainable WEEE recycling activity in Cameroon. The ultimate goal is to demonstrate that the sustainable recycling of WEEE (Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment) can be profitable in developing countries today.
The objective is a large-scale, replicable activity of e-waste collection and recycling in Cameroon’s two major urban areas. 10.000 tons of WEEE will be recycled over a 5 year period.
IPPAG and its members wanted the award winning project to be:
Feasible, Relevant, Impactful, and Effective
…….and WEEECAM fits our criteria perfectly.
IPPAG and its members have adopted standards for the safety, quality and integrity of our products and processes and we are committed to respecting not only the rights of individuals, but also of our environment.
The United Nations University (UNU) estimates that the global flow of electronic waste, or WEEE (Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment), was 41.8 million metric tons in 2014, with an estimated growth rate of 4-5% per year. This specific type of waste poses a serious threat to human health and the environment.
WEEECAM and IPPAG believe that the sustainable recycling of WEEE can be viable in developing countries, and that this emerging global threat can be turned into a driver of green growth
At IPPAG, we are very proud to be supporting this project. The expected outcomes include:
- the ecological treatment of 10.000 tons of hazardous waste
- the sale of thousands of tons of strategic raw materials and tens of thousands of refurbished appliances
- the creation of 157 local full-time jobs as well as hundreds of contract jobs
- improved income and working conditions for informal e-waste workers
- and a carbon offset close to 100.000 tons.
To find out more about this project (English version pending):
In parallel to the yearly HKTDC Gifts & Premiums fair which is the prime sourcing event in our industry, IPPAG and its members once again had the opportunity to meet up in Hong Kong for our General Assembly and a series of meetings and events.
Board elections were held:
– Mr Thibaut Fontaine has been renewed as Chairman of the Board for 2018
– and Mr Kaspar Benz (Pandinavia, Switzerland) was elected in replacement of Mr Andy Ducksbury (Lesmar, UK).
Our meetings then covered a series of IPPAG updates followed by a presentation by guest speakers Mr Paul Bellatone / Mr Dale Denham from PPAI giving us updates on the US Promotional Products industry.
Focus on the US continued with a presentation from Mr Jeff Lederer, Prime Resources giving his fellow members valuable insight on the strategies and changes that have led to his company’s success.
Best case stories from the past months were then presented showcasing the best of member’s sales operations, products, and creative ideas
The day rounded off with our official IPPAG dinner in a friendly and lively atmosphere and with our awards ceremony:
Congrats to our Best case stories winners:
– Chilli Ideas, Romania for the ‘Most innovative Promotional solution’
– Gimmick company, Guatemala for the ‘Most original product idea’
– Pandinavia, Switzerland for the ‘Best marketing Campaign’
IPPAG also hosted a Partner Supplier reception at the HKCEC on April 27th. This event is an opportunity for our members to meet with our dedicated, trustworthy and long term Partner Suppliers to develop existing ties and create new ones. Partner Suppliers are also rewarded for their collaboration with IPPAG members over the year with social awards for the best resultsn the best progress, the best CSR status and the best creative capabilities.
Last of IPPAG’s events in Hong Kong was our traditional ‘Products’ meeting where our members exchanged the latest and most inspiring products they found during the fair: this will be the source for our upcoming IPPAG ‘trends’ collection! Keep a lookout…
The 2018 IPPAG Convergences Awards:
At IPPAG, we want to:
act more… / act better… / act differently…
… by investing together to offset our activities and give back.
We want our chosen project / supported charity to be:
feasible… / relevant… / impactful… / and effective…
And that’s why we have teamed up with Convergences:
an international think-tank focused on advocacy and mobilisation to promote the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the development of a “Zero Exclusion, Zero Carbon, Zero Poverty” world.
Every year, the Convergences Awards reward the best projects initiated by public, private and solidarity-based partners seeking to build a fair and sustainable future. Award winners receive multiple benefits:
- A financial donation to support their project
- Visibility, networking, support and mentoring
IPPAG is proud to be supporting and sponsoring this years Convergences Awards: All of the IPPAG member companies and our Partner Suppliers are getting involved and you can too!
The first step, which is now launched, is the call out for applications:
This is for projects that are connected to the following UN SGS
We will prioritise projects in low cost production countries most relevant to IPPAG
- high social and/or environmental impact
- innovative and replicable
- projects carried out by solidarity-based organisations in partnership with other public or private organisations
- 2 years of existence
- Economic viability
- Effective impact measurement process and sustainability demonstration
Once project applications are closed and validated, at a later stage, our members and the public will be called upon to vote for their favoured project…
An international jury will also assess the projects and place their official vote: leading to a semi finale, and then a finale…
The award-winning project will be announced in June, and will then be presented at the Convergences World Forum in September.
IPPAG and its member companies will continue to lend their support to the designated charity project.