DMG acquires Atticus Events and HI Design

DMG Events Middle East, Asia & Africa has acquired boutique business forum organiser Atticus Events Ltd, the owner and operator of the leading forums for hospitality interior design, HI Design.

DMG Events are part of the broader Daily Mail and General Trust PLC and operate around the world with offices in Dubai, London, Singapore and Calgary. Amongst other events, DMG own and operate The Hotel Show, Index, ADIPEC and the Big 5 series of exhibitions. HI Design will compliment this existing hospitality and design portfolio.

“The HI Design forums dovetail perfectly with the work our teams do with Index and the growing selection of Hotel Shows,” comments Andy Stuart, Vice President of Design & Hospitality, DMG Events. “The acquisition of HI Design gives us another way to serve our market, bringing suppliers together with buyers from four- and five-star hotel projects in a well-controlled atmosphere primed for doing good business.”

Focused specifically on the interior design of luxury hotels, HI Design majors on specialist business meetings between key buyers from active hotel projects and a curated selection of international FF&E suppliers. With each event held in a different hotel location every year, HI Design forums currently run annually in Europe, Asia and MEA.

HI Design EMEA (Now Europe) ran for the first time in 2006 in Stockholm. HI Design Asia was launched in 2009 and the MEA edition debuted this year, with a first event held in Oman.

Key features of HI Design include a pre-arranged one-on-one meetings programme, a world-class seminar programme, a supplier product showcase and an abundance of carefully planned networking opportunities.

“It is absolutely fantastic to be able to integrate HI Design’s unique approach to business matching with our own established portfolio of hospitality and design events,” continues Stuart. “This latest acquisition is just one part of our ongoing expansion plans, as we boost the geographic breadth of our portfolio, while delving deeper into the key verticals we serve. The model of business matching developed by HI Design’s founders – Jonathan Needs and James Burke – is one that we will continue to evolve as we embrace multi-channel, interactive platforms for getting business done quickly and efficiently, but still with plenty of that vital personal touch.”

The sale marks the culmination of over 17 years of developing and running business meetings forums for Jonathan Needs and James Burke. Their previous company, Pelican Events, was sold to Questex in 2007, involving the acquisition of their two previous forums, Hotec Asia and Hotec Middle East.

Having just completed the 22nd HI Design event in Kota Kinabalu during the first week of November, they will be fully involved with the rest of the Atticus team in delivering the 23rd event in Bahrain (HI Design MEA, 4-6 March 2018) before bowing out at the end of April.

Needs and Burke comment: “Having nurtured and grown the HI Design events into the leading forums they are today, we look forward to seeing the next stage of their development. We are extremely proud of how HI Design has established itself over the last 12 years, developing and growing in different parts of the world, and during some very challenging global economic times. We believe the DMG Events hospitality and design portfolio will provide an ideal environment for HI Design to continue to flourish. It is also great news that a number of our colleagues, in particular Sofi Khan, Charlie Gilmour and Guy Dittrich, who have worked with us for many years, will carry on doing so with DMG.”

They continue: “We have enjoyed our time immensely working with this wonderfully creative industry and will of course miss the many friends we have made. But now is the time for a new chapter and we hope that the many supporters of HI Design around the world will continue to support it for many years to come.”