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 06-08 March 2018 / ExCeL, London

ecobuild: embracing offsite technology innovation

04 September 2017

Following its acquisition of ecobuild, Futurebuild Events Ltd is making big changes to the 2018 event to ensure a fresh and relevant format. This includes the further investment in the collaboration with Explore Offsite and the expansion of the Offsite District within the show.

ecobuild is all about ensuring that it is truly designed by and for the industry, with the offsite sector being engaged on a number of levels, thereby setting the agenda and engaging with the most innovative, exciting and inspiring brands, companies and speakers to ensure the best possible visitor and exhibitor experience. 

Explore Offsite at ecobuild

Offsite represents the future direction of construction technology and will be a key element in the vision for Ecobuild 2018. The opportunities are immense. Offsite construction is rapidly expanding, with a 35% increase per annum. Yet at the same time, an estimated 90% of the construction market is still to adopt offsite technology. There are so many opportunities offsite construction offers to both private and public sectors – a bespoke solution to the housing shortage, delivery of rapidly required school buildings, shorter build times, less waste and lower costs for buyers.  The challenge is educating and inspiring the wider built environment about this potential – which is why Ecobuild are working with leaders in the sector to make Explore Offsite at ecobuild bigger and better than ever before. 

Last year, Explore Offsite was one of the most popular elements of ecobuild, with many of the most innovative and forward-thinking brands from around the globe representing the sector including well-known brands such as EOS Facades, Wernick, B&K Structures, Portakabin and Hadley. The area was also supported by leading offsite experts Cogent Consulting and key industry media – Offsite Magazine and Offsite Hub.

Scaling up this success, ecobuild 2018 will see the offsite focus return and grow - it will include more exhibitors and have masterclasses showcasing the latest offsite innovations. New partners include key associations such as the Structural Timber Association (STA), the Modular and Portable Building Association (MPBA) and British Precast. 

Explore Offsite at ecobuild will focus on key industry innovations and provide a comprehensive and balanced perspective on this rapidly emerging sector from a host of UK and international suppliers. During the three day event, a number of offsite solutions will be showcased including: framing systems in concrete, timber and steel, modular and volumetric systems, bathroom and kitchen pods, offsite roofing technology, pre-engineered building services and a range of prefabricated building components. 

There will also be daily CPD-accredited Masterclasses, facilitated by the Offsite Academy, where visitors will be invited to learn about the latest in offsite technology and lean manufacturing processes, plus hear from leading architects on how to embrace design for manufacture and assembly (DfMA) and the impact of BIM in the context of offsite construction – these Masterclasses will offer an independent perspective on the offsite construction sector as a whole.

Co-location of established events

New to Explore Offsite at ecobuild in 2018 will be the co-location of the annual Offsite Construction Awards and the Offsite Construction Summit.  The Offsite Construction Awards are recognised as the ultimate endorsement of innovation and achievement in the offsite sector.  The Awards will take place on the evening of 06 March in the ecobuild Arena within the main show area and will be complemented by an Awards Gallery that will showcase each of the shortlisted projects, products and people. 

Ahead of the Offsite Construction Awards, the Offsite Construction Summit will bring together leading offsite specialists from around the globe to deliver a comprehensive programme of case study based presentations, demonstrating global best practice and thought leadership.  Summit speakers will be assembled from all areas of the globe including Australasia, North America and mainland Europe.

Offsite Buyers and Specifiers Forum – the easy and efficient way to do business
Also new for 2018 will be the introduction of the Offsite Buyers and Specifiers Forum – a dynamic meeting environment exclusively for exhibitors at the show to meet face-to-face with leading contractors, architects, specifiers and purchasing managers.

As time is at a premium - too much work, busy schedules and not enough hours in the day, show visitors may miss out on making contact with significant key people that could have a huge impact on the future success of their business. The Offsite Buyers & Specifiers Forum provides a solution to this by offering a structured, highly effective way for buyers to meet with new and existing vendors/suppliers from within the offsite industry by pre-booking meetings to take place in the dedicated Forum business centre.

The ecobuild team will organise a bespoke programme of hand-picked supplier meetings, seminars and networking events to help fulfil the buyers immediate to longer term project needs – enabling them to exploit the best of business opportunities from visiting Explore Offsite at ecobuild.  The Offsite Buyers & Specifiers Forum will be located at the heart of the Offsite District in the main exhibition hall and a dedicated and customised timetable of activity will ensure that buyers get the most out of their time invested in visiting the show.

Ask the Expert

Explore Offsite at ecobuild in 2017 demonstrated the insatiable appetite of visitors to acquire as much offsite knowledge as possible when visiting the show.  This can be done by talking to exhibitors or sitting in on Masterclasses, but in 2018 Explore Offsite at ecobuild will also now include a dedicated Ask the Expert facility, whereby visitors will be able to meet one-to-one with leading industry experts to discuss live projects and explore design efficiencies, engineering challenges and supply-chain development.

The Ask the Expert facility, located in the heart of the Offsite District, will permit visitors to ‘drop in’ with scheme concept details and drawings – without the need to pre-book meetings and without any consultation fee.  Leading offsite industry experts will be on hand to discuss project objectives and to make recommendations on design efficiencies, value engineering, comparable case studies and supply-chain opportunities, or just provide endorsement of current strategies.

What is already lined up for Explore Offsite at ecobuild in 2018 is exciting, but the show organisers want to challenge the offsite sector to move the technology even more to the forefront of construction thinking by getting more diverse and cutting-edge technologies on display or discussed within the Masterclass seminar programme. ecobuild want the offsite sector to help shape the event and ensure that Explore Offsite at ecobuild is showcasing the very latest thinking and innovations in the sector.  

Get involved and share your thoughts on how you want Explore Offsite at ecobuild to look.  Contact the ecobuild team on social media using the hashtag #Ecobuild2018 or email Martin Hurn – Managing Director at: martin.hurn@ecobuild.co.uk   

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