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PRESS INFORMATION

13 May 2008

PLASA 2008 AGM Marks Watershed Year for Association

PLASA's 2008 AGM and Members Lunch will mark a milestone in the Association's campaign to enhance the political influence of the entertainment and installation technology industries - after a year that saw a stunning success in the fight against OFCOM's proposed radio frequency sell-off and PLASA's appointment by the QCA as an awarding body.

The PLASA AGM, which by popular request returns to the Hurlingham Club in West London on Tuesday 3 June, is every member's chance to have his or her voice at the Association's annual forum. In addition to a review of the considerable achievements of the last 12 months, members will also hear about PLASA's future plans addressing core member services, the development of industry skills, a campaign to put green initiatives at the top of the agenda and a commitment to stronger industry representation, to which members' input will be invaluable.

After official business is over, it will be time for the lunch that's now a hugely popular fixture on the industry's calendar, thanks in part to some illustrious and highly entertaining past guest speakers including Tony Benn and Michael Portillo.

This year it's the turn of journalist and political commentator John Humphrys: renowned as a tough and tenacious interviewer, his work on Today and for many years on BBC1's On the Record, has made him one of the organisation's most respected journalists and presenters.

The rest of the afternoon, according to tradition, affords members an opportunity to socialise and network in the elegant glass-roofed Palm Court of the Hurlingham Club's Georgian clubhouse and enjoy its 42 acres of landscaped gardens.

It comes against a background of a momentous year for the Association: since last June the PLASA-led battle over OFCOM's proposed RF sell-off has culminated in substantial concessions from Government for our industry, and seen PLASA's political influence grow through its part in the QCA employer recognition pilot and its new awarding body status. PLASA's active campaigning on green initiatives and its lobbying remit have also grown.

April saw the launch of the first regional event, PLASA Focus - Leeds 2009. As if that wasn't enough, the past year has also brought a fundamental, long-awaited restructuring of the Association's membership, and the launch of an all-new PLASA website with new member services.

"At last year's AGM we set out an agenda for change, with a great deal of optimism," says PLASA Executive Director Ruth Rossington, "because we felt that both the desire and the will to make major changes happen were there, both within the Association and among the members.

"PLASA's success in the RF spectrum licensing battle has established a remarkable awareness of our industry and its voice in Parliament, as has our recent appointment as an awarding body giving PLASA the same status as City & Guilds and Edexcel. This is a major development for the industry as it means all future qualifications developed by us can be submitted for National Accreditation in the same way as A-Levels or NVQs.

"We are on track to achieve all the other objectives we outlined, and ready to add fresh ideas for next year's agenda. The AGM and Lunch have become an important part of the industry year and with so much momentum behind us, it's an opportunity for members to celebrate, as well as to look forward."

Notes to Editors:

PLASA is the lead professional body for businesses that supply technologies and services to the event, entertainment and installation industries. Operating from offices in Europe and North America, the Association provides business support services to its growing worldwide membership, writes industry standards, leads the development of qualifications and focuses on improving the business practices adopted by the industry. With over 1100 members worldwide, it represents one of the largest member networks in the industry.

PLASA also runs successful media and events divisions and is responsible for the industry-leading magazines Lighting&Sound International, Lighting&Sound America and Protocol and the PLASA Show in London, together with the European and North American regional PLASA Focus events.

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