Event buyers short on supplies ahead of London 2012

6 February 2012

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6 February 2012 | Adam Leach

Nearly a third of buyers in the events industry think they don’t have enough equipment in stock to deal with heightened demand resulting from the London 2012 Olympics.

Supply Challenges: London 2012, published today by the International Special Events Society (ISES) and Crewsaders, found 29 per cent believed they would be caught short of resources when the Olympics caused a spike in demand.

Glastonbury Festival organisers cited potential supply shortages and extra costs, resulting from the games, as part of the reason for taking a year off in 2012. There was concern, for example, that it would not be able to get the required number of portable toilets because they would be needed for London 2012.

A total of 30 per cent of buyers said they would need to substitute products to continue to meet demand for their goods and services.

The research found that of those who believe they will be resourced enough, 60 per cent will only achieve this by establishing new operational processes to increase the productivity of supplies. Key to this method, it said, is establishing a mechanism to improve stock allocation.

The report suggests that one of the main impacts will be an increase in equipment hiring and subcontracting. It found that 87 per cent of buyers are willing to ‘dry hire’ (equipment-only hire) or contract other companies with equipment surpluses to meet their operational needs. As demand in the UK will be increased, companies said they will look to work with or establish partnerships with European companies.

Discussing the potential impact of the games on suppliers, a respondent said: “I can see there may be a bit of a fight for equipment.” Another said: “There will be shortages and long delivery times, and prices will go up.”

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