Big changes are underway at Conferon Global Services. The Twinsburg, Ohio-based meeting and event management company has recently announced a restructuring and new executive appointments, as well as plans to expand its reach in the corporate meetings market.
As part of the reorganization that took place in April, CGS has integrated the three arms of the company, Conferon, ITS, and ExpoExchange, into a single enterprise—Conferon Global Services. The intention is to streamline operations and to “leverage the close to 3,000 events we do in a year for our clients,” Ed Shartar, president and chief executive officer, said at a May 11 press conference. He said the change also seeks to eliminate confusion in the marketplace that came from having three distinct brands.
There are now three main groups within the organization: sales and account management, operations, and marketing. Brad Weaber, chief customer officer, heads up sales and account management; David Erich, chief operating officer, leads the operations group; and Rick Binford, chief marketing officer, heads up the marketing operation.
Erich joined the company in March from British Airways where he was senior vice president of U.K. customer service and operations. Binford, who has been with CGS since 1999, replaced David Peckinpaugh as CMO in early May after Peckinpaugh left to become president and CEO of the San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau.
According to Shartar, the goals of the reorganized “customer-centric” company are to: produce distinct event experiences; deliver the highest quality efficiently; be a partner and advisor with clients and business partner with suppliers; be thought leaders in the industry; and expand into new markets.
CGS will focus on four markets—association, corporate, government, and trade shows. Associations represent the bulk of CGS’s clients, with corporations accounting for about one-third. “There’s a huge opportunity for us in the corporate market,” Shartar said, primarily because of all the “initiatives that are going on in the corporate world.”
The company has hired Atlanta-based public relations firm Manning, Selvage, and Lee to explore rebranding or changing the name of the company. The examination is based on the concern that the current brand, Conferon, is only recognized in one area of the business, meeting management.