Fan Expo Canada Sold to Informa

One of the biggest stories to come out of Fan Expo has nothing to do with comic books or video games but rather the convention itself. Fan Expo Canada has been acquired by the multinational Informa; see the press release below or download a PDF.

Fan Expo

What does this mean for the stars, fans, artists, and dealers at Fan Expo? We’ll need to wait and see.

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Anthony Falcone
Anthony Falcone is a freelance writer living in Toronto and he is the Ayatollah of Rocknrolla. You should definitely follow him on Twitter.
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7 Comments

  1. If this report is true and Informa was involved in the presentation of this years show, I think we are in good hands.

    My wife and I have attended the show the past 3 years and last year was the least pleasant. Everyone seemed to have the same issues. Long wait times, narrow rows, over crowding, lack of places to sit and a general lack of coordination. This year we found the show (on Friday) to be far better organized and we were able to move through the show and take our times at the various vendors to shop, talk to the artists and generally take in the atmosphere. Moving the celebrity guests to the North building along with the vendors dedicated to that part of the business also freed up a ton of space and allowed the bulky video game people a place to expand without taking over the other areas. It is amazing how much space the celebrity area takes up and wastes in the South building just for line ups.

    Maybe it was me but I also felt that the rows were widened a bit and allowed for a better flow of people through the area and while bumping and shoving still existed, you could actually stop and shop without being run over.

    If Informa had any role in this years show and these changes, then I look forward to seeing what they can bring next year.

    My only concerns involve the lack of either a DC or Marvel booth at the show which concerns me as a comic fan. I hope that they can bring the big two back into the fold, and please do something about the drink prices. I appreciate making a profit, but 2.50 plus tax for a .35 cent can of pop is wrong.

    I am curious what others thought of the show this year, and if you attended last year did you find it better or worse.

  2. So is $10 for a $2.35 can of Labatt Blue at the Jays Game… but at least Fan Expo lets you bring in food and snacks into the MTCC.

  3. I think altogether, based on my one day of Con experience, this year’s show seemed much more organized than last year’s affair. The lineup that slinked down through the parking garage near the south building, leading into the south end of the Convention Centre, was much more organized and controlled than last year. Where it took me close to two hours to get into the show last year (on Saturday), I made it from street level to the Convention Centre in about 40 minutes.

    The Con itself was less congested, largely due to using the north building for celebrities, who let’s face it, caused the congested walking space at past Fan Expos. This was a great addition, and it hardly took any time to travel between buildings. Given that I spent most of my time in the south building, I think continuing this is a good course of action.

    Finally, as for the transaction, I feel like we should have all known this sooner. It’s strange to announce the sale formally during the event versus as it happened. I think we have to wait and see how next year’s show evolves to gauge the impact of Informa.

  4. I think that Informa’s involvement in 2013 was more in the way of adding more $ to the budget for additional guests, that’s the only thing I noticed as being different (I kept thinking HSM was worried that there wouldn’t be enough people coming to support the move to 2 buildings so had gone over budget to do it). That and my renewal check for 2014 was to Informa.

    Moving the celebs to the north was great, in that the people in the south wanted to be there, they weren’t just killing time between celebrity signing times. The floor seemed much more manageable, but the crowds on Friday were as big as they were on Sunday.

    As for the timing, not sure why it was saved until the weekend – probably so as not to rock the boat too much going into this year’s show. They would have been flooded with questions that would have distracted them from doing this year properly.

  5. I’ll be a bit of a wet blanket and say that I like to see some improvement in the traffic flow within the south building. There is a choke point between the area that has rooms 71x and the escalators and rooms 70x. Saturday is Fan Expo’s largest crowd and with everyone leaving the panels at approximately the same time, you cannot leave the area in a timely manner. They closed off one side of the escalator and need to open it to relieve this choke point.

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