TEA Connect Blog

12 February 2020

February 2020: TEA gatherings in Europe and Saudi Arabia - Owen Ralph reports

The Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) Europe and Middle East Division’s first networking opportunities of 2020 took place on February 4. In addition to TEA Tuesday gatherings in three European cities, this included TEA's first networking event in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, an emerging market. 

SEA Expo

The latter event coincided with the second day of the new Saudi Entertainment and Amusement Expo (SEA). Around 30 themed entertainment industry professionals met at the Crowne Plaza hotel close to the Riyadh International Convention & Exhibition Center. Over lunch, TEA International Board member Bob Chambers of The Producers Group spoke to our group about the association and its goals. With tens of billions of dollars of entertainment projects set for the Kingdom as part of Vision 2030, there’s clearly great potential for TEA members over the coming decade. This was a nice opportunity for those working, or hoping to work, in the region to meet. Another event is planned soon. Thanks to Yael Coifman (Leisure Development Partners) and Mike Rigby (WhiteWater) for their organizational work.

Paris, London and Den Bosch

Over in Paris, it was a most convivial evening at the Wall Street Bar in Pigalle. Just like the New York Stock Exchange, the drinks prices here constantly change, which made for some fun conversation. With a bit of luck, a few attendees also made some new clients.

At London’s King’s Cross Station, just footsteps from the Harry Potter Platform 9¾ retail store, TEA members met for drinks at The Parcel Yard pub. One of the great things about TEA Tuesday, other than having quality time to talk and get to know one other in relaxed surroundings, is the availability of events in different cities.

There was a fun moment this time as attendees in London linked up live with those at the Dutch gathering in Den Bosch. Also known as s’Hertogenbosch, the city’s Cafè Bar le Duc was the location, and as always with any TEA mixer in the Netherlands, there was a strong NextGen presence.

Coming up

On February 12, a TEA mixer was set to take place at the massive AV industry event ISE in Amsterdam. The next TEA Tuesday will be March 10, with events again in France, the UK and Netherlands but this time including two new cities. Watch the TEA Events Page for updates.

Report provided by Owen Ralph. Images by Chris Willrich, Cynthia Vergon, Matt Barton and Ifat Caspi

Posted by Judy Rubin

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