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Offshore Europe – As told by the ThinkPR team

Now that the dust has settled on OE23, the team has had a chance to reflect on their experiences across the week. For some, the show was their first Offshore Europe and it was quickly understood why there is such a hype around this event for the north-east.

Meeting clients, attending events, engaging in panels and discussions, and getting the chance to celebrate the community of leaders and innovators within the industry - there were plenty of highlights, so here is what the ThinkPR team thought of the week...

Annabel Sall, CEO:

I have been fortunate to attend conferences globally including ADIPEC in Abu Dhabi and OTC in Houston. Over the years, Offshore Europe has always been an important event for the ‘Oil Capital of Europe’ but has sometimes fallen short of providing delegates with networking and social opportunities. However, the 50th anniversary show felt incredibly positive with a lot of events out with the conference too. It was a fantastic chance for the whole team to meet clients, business contacts and the media and I felt proud to show visitors around the city and what it has to offer.

I have always reinforced the importance of building relationships and the OE23 week was a perfect example of how positive this can be. With new business opportunities following the conference and our clients being the best ambassadors for the work we do, I am now looking forward to doing it all again at ADIPEC next month!

Leigh-Ann Rogie, Managing Director:

OE23, what a week this was! Quite possibly the busiest Offshore Europe I have experienced throughout my time working in the energy industry. The concept has never really changed, nor has it needed to, it has just had to evolve alongside the industry it represents, and to be honest when you are in one exhibition you could be at any other across the globe. But on home ground, OE hits different!

It is so important to be a part of the conversation and attending the panels and techincal sessions has given me a lot of food for thought moving forward with supporting our clients through their own transition. As we move to a decarbonised future with CCS (Carbon Capture and Storage) and hydrogen, it is vital that we are a part of the story and can assist and guide our clients with best practices and help mould their voice and messaging as the focus shifts.

We have helped several clients already move their focus and how best to spotlight their progression as a company in a very highly competitive environment. I am proud to work within the energy industry and event prouder to be a part of its next phase.

Becky Orlinski, Brand & Design Manager:

The energy industry is a dynamic and constantly evolving sector, so Offshore Europe was a great opportunity to immerse myself in the latest technologies and trends.

As a designer and brand manager, I was particularly impressed by the innovative ways that companies showcased their products and services on a global stage. From the stand designs to the promotional and printed materials, it was clear that a lot of thought and creativity went into this year's exhibition. Walking around the show, Wood’s homely presence stood out immediately. Set up to look like a café/living space, their stand offered an inviting atmosphere to sit down and have a chat. The juxtaposition compared to the other more traditional stands was spot on for the Wood brand, and of course the use of wood as a key material didn’t go unnoticed!

Another favourite was the Net Zero Technology Centre (NZTC) stand that can only be compared to a spaceship. Perfectly conveying its futuristic innovation-focused messaging, the stand was an immersive experience that gave visitors a unique opportunity to opportunity to explore the pioneering work of the NZTC and its technology developers.

Matthew Forsyth, Senior Account Executive:

As a member of the team who got their first experience of Offshore Europe this year, it was great to finally see what all the hype was about. Synonymous with the north-east, there was never any escaping just how big a deal OE is for all walks of the energy industry, but even so, the scale still blew me away. A positive for Aberdeen to have so much footfall; there was a definite buzz around the city.

Throughout the week, it was encouraging to hear and see so much focus on the journey to a Net Zero future, whether through panel discussions, chatting to people across the show, or on stands and displays. Although it's a long journey ahead, we’ve got to start somewhere. By supporting clients with messaging and helping them to understand that journey, we can spotlight the leaders and initiatives that have the power to make a difference.

Additionally, alongside the actual show, I also had the chance to strengthen my event management experiences by organising and supporting our client, 3t, with its pre-OE rebrand event at OGV Taproom & Podium. The perfect way to kick off the return of OE, the planning for 'The Future of Training: A 3t Summit' allowed me to exercise the experience I had gained during our role as event partner for our A-ND dinner earlier in the year and apply them in a new context. A fantastic night, it was great to deliver an event that helped announce the new era of 3t.

Hollie Knox, Senior Account Executive:

Having attended other exhibitions and conferences in the past, I hadn’t quite anticipated the increased scale and capacity that Offshore Europe would have in comparison. Getting out and about and meeting clients both current and potential is a huge part of our job, and the connections this creates are so rewarding. The value that in-person conversations have is not comparable to emails and video calls.

With that in mind, we are always thinking of new and trendy strategies that link back to the services we offer for clients and how we can showcase our brand. This year, our Brand and Design Manager Becky came up with the great idea of creating the SPE Offshore Europe X Think PR shades, following the viral TikTok trend. While not having a set stand or area within the exhibition, the branded shades were a great way to put our stamp on the show and share our presence in a unique way.

Whether you were attending the event or active on socials, I am sure you have seen these shades somewhere! This was a fantastic talking point with everyone at both the event and networking nights and was a great excuse to speak to new faces, removing any awkward small talk! There is always a method and strategy behind our thinking!

Hayley Milne, Senior Account Executive:

Offshore Europe 2023, luckily, landed on my second week working at ThinkPR!

Being new to the ever-evolving energy industry, OE was an extremely valuable learning opportunity, to soak up industry knowledge. It also gave me the chance to make new industry connections, attend panels and listen in on technical discussions between industry experts, on the opportunities and challenges around the energy transition.

It was exciting to get out and about, meeting clients face-to-face, who were attending and exhibiting, rather than just having had contact over an introductory email or Teams call! I had never attended OE before, so I hadn’t quite prepared myself for what to expect or the bustling schedule and networking events that came with it.

On reflection, I thoroughly enjoyed OE. It really allowed me to hit the ground running, learn about the industry, agency life and integrate further into the Think team, and not forgetting, completing OE with minimal blisters...

Ross Shewan, Junior Account Executive:

I really enjoyed my time at Offshore Europe 2023, especially considering that it marked the event's 50th anniversary where this milestone emphasised the event's importance to the region. As someone who has never attended such a conference before, it was eye-opening and inspiring to experience the significance of OE in its impact for the north-east and across the globe – all eyes were on Aberdeen!

It was also a good chance to meet and engage with our clients, showcasing each role that they play within the sector and put a face to a name! I engaged with various presentations and panel discussions, where I not only learned about the industry's future but also gained invaluable insights into addressing current challenges. It was encouraging to see such a high level of activity over the week in Aberdeen as the city welcomed people from all over the world.

I had the opportunity to learn a lot during my time at OE, with one particularly valuable lesson being the importance of correctly reading the bus schedule. It became especially evident when I accidentally ended up outside a hotel in Dyce instead of Union Street.


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