India Africa Forum Summit 2015 - A huge success for Encompass and ICE India
by Rakhi Jerly Business Events | November 10, 2015 | Feature
With 42 heads of state and 54 countries participating, never has India hosted an event of such magnitude as the India Africa Forum Summit 2015 (IAFS). The successful conclusion of this big event is the result of immaculate planning, precision and passion on all levels, with years of experience put to good use by Encompass Events Pvt Ltd and ICE India (A division of TUI).
The IAFS is a celebration of the close partnership between Africa and India and an acknowledgement of our shared history as well as future prospects. Sukrit Singh CEO, GG Encompass Network said, “It’s a rare honour and a privilege to be a part of events that go down in history. Encompass and ICE are proud to put India on the global map of power partnerships by organising the INDIA AFRICA FORUM SUMMIT.”
The vision for an event of this stature is stated to engage in dialogue with African countries and set a new benchmark in the way summits are hosted in India. Given a task of this magnitude, Encompass and ICE India found an immense opportunity with vast scope for creativity. The endeavour was to feature the best of India, from building a world class convention set up to showcasing Indian art, culture and the history of Indo-African partnership. Needless to say, the agencies has a colossal task ahead.
“To represent India at a global level is a matter of pride, we needed to capture the essence of the India Africa summit, from the design of the logo, to the ceremony to the planning and execution! Tanu Randhawa and Hema Bhagwani led this from the front and created a splendid memoir of India,” says Roshan Abbas, MD GG Encompass Network.
Logistically, the challenges started with the search of a venue that could host and accommodate the entire event. Indira Gandhi Indoor stadium was found to be best suited for this. But then the real task was to convert a massive stadium like IGI into a dynamic convention centre. Existing structures were dismantled to create leaders’ lounges, stadium spaces designed to become senior official meeting halls, while the main stadium served as plenary sessions’ area and games practice areas became lunch areas with corridors being transformed into cultural galleries or art exhibition areas.
More than 100 days went into designing and planning every detail to perfection - from landscaping to city branding. This involved innumerable hours of meetings with the ministry, multiple recee trips to map every detail of the stadium, a 20,000 sq.m built up area, 100 event professionals onsite for 30 days, thousands of manpower and crew working 24X 7 to deliver on production, collaboration with industry professionals on every aspect, working together with CPWD, SPG, international security agencies, interpreters and more. Encompass states, “We had to put all our years of experience in a nutshell and deliver the best.”
Tanu Randhawa, Encompass’s VP – Client Servicing and Project Lead for the Summit commented, “More than size and scale the India Africa Forum Summit was one of the rare moments when one gets the opportunity to articulate the vision of a nation. As a host, India had to put her best foot forward. She had to wow the guests with her scale and stature and yet remain humble as a host should. Making the statement come alive was what we did.”
Another exciting proposition for the agency was producing an opening ceremony with over 200 Indian and African dancers. “While putting together the opening, one realised that boundaries truly blur when music and dance come together, no matter where one comes from, we all speak one language, that of rhythm and unity,” says Hema Bhagwani – AVP- Engagement Planning, Encompass.
The success of the event is credited to the incredible collaboration with the Ministry of External affairs that delegated a dedicated and passionate organising team. The specially appointed IAFS summit team from the Ministry worked tirelessly with the agency to give them enough creative freedom.
“Not only was this one of the biggest projects for us and India, it was also a historic one. IAFS was a classic example of private - public partnership which is what India needs right now and I am glad that I could be a part of it,” said Karan Chaudhri, Client servicing director – Encompass.
The biggest and boldest state event hosted by India in three decades concluded on Oct 29, at New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi Stadium complex.