- Say Hello to Steve McLaughlin
- Well earned retirement for Pete Rowley
- Icon – providing international quality, top class service from just down the road in Cannock.
- Our new Vans
- Eve’s work experience
- Our new sign
- New Job for Will
- New job for Josh
- Icon gives local businesses an international edge
- “Build it and they will come”
Say Hello to Steve McLaughlin17.11.17
We’re excited to welcome Steven McLaughlin as our new Business Development Manager at Icon Exhibitions.
With years of business-to-business experience, Steve’s a good fit for our company, as he’s also experienced our industry from a client perspective having been responsible for arranging exhibitions in his previous roles.
A former Cannock Chase High School pupil (although it was called Chenet Comprehensive when he attended) Steve lives in Cannock with his wife and 2 older and 2 younger children. Outside work Steve likes to keep active, enjoying hobbies such as cycling, skiing, running and walking.
Steve says: “I’ve really enjoyed my first month with Icon getting to know everyone – there’s a really good team spirit here. I’ve been made to feel very welcome and supported whilst I learn how the company operates. The job is really varied, with a good deal of travelling involved, and the quality of Icon’s work is exemplary, with many happy clients. There’s lots of energy in the company to drive it forward and build for the future, and I’m really excited to be a part of it.“
Well earned retirement for Pete Rowley16.12.16
We’re sad to be saying goodbye to one of our carpenters, Pete Rowley, who is due to retire just before Christmas.
Pete’s worked at Icon for 15 years, but now he’s turned 65, Pete’s looking forward to spending more time in his garden, working on his flowerbeds rather than crafting bespoke items for exhibitions.
Pete’s worked in the exhibition industry since the NEC opened in 1976. In fact, one of Pete’s earlier jobs was as a shop and bar-fitter, and he was actually part of the team that worked on fitting out the refreshments areas in the NEC. Since then, whilst working for Icon as an exhibition carpenter, he’s spent even more time at the NEC, building bespoke exhibition stands there, and at other exhibition venues around the world, for Icon’s clients.
Pete says: “I’ve really enjoyed working at Icon, as the work is so varied and the people are a great team to work with. The best thing about working as an exhibition carpenter is that you never quite know what you’re going to be asked to make next. I’ve been asked to make some strange things in my time, but probably one of the oddest things I’ve had to make is a replica cow’s udder!”
MD of Icon Exhibitions, Wayne Ball says: “We’ll all really miss having Pete around. He’s been a loyal member of our team over the last 10 years, and his carpentry skills and hard work have definitely played a part in helping Icon develop a reputation for high quality exhibition services.”
The team have presented Pete with a watch and tankard as a token of their appreciation of his efforts over the years.
Icon – providing international quality, top class service from just down the road in Cannock.25.07.16
It goes without saying that our customers want good quality and service, but many of them also want an exhibition company that’s on their doorstep. 2 of our clients, Hainbuch UK Ltd and STOBER Drives Ltd are fellow Cannock manufacturing businesses, both based in Hednesford, who’ve used Icon for years – and here’s why in their own words:
Nick Peter from Hainbuch UK Ltd says: “Our first exhibition was in 2010, only 2 years after we set up the business. Having never exhibited before, we needed a company with the expertise to guide us and provide us with a solution that would make our first exhibition a success. Icon fitted the bill, as the team design, manufacture and build great stands, so all we needed to do was turn up and talk to customers. We did our 3rd show with Icon in April 2016. As our business grows, so does our exhibition presence, and every year our stand has increased in size. The great thing about working with Icon is not having to worry about anything – just knowing that when we turn up on the day, everything will be OK, and when we’re finished, Icon will get it all taken down and stored safely.”
Martin Preece from STOBER Drives Ltd says: “It’s great having Icon just down the road, as it means we can always nip round if we need to discuss anything, and we’re all close to the NEC where we regularly exhibit at the Drives & Controls Exhibition. The team at Icon is fantastic – professional, efficient, amenable and they all work so hard to make each project a success. The stands they create for us always look fantastic- we’re really glad we’ve got them on board!”
Our new Vans17.06.16
Eve’s work experience15.02.16
We’re delighted to introduce Eve, who has joined us to gain some work experience after graduating with an honours degree in Interior Architecture & Design from Nottingham Trent University.
Originally from Shropshire, she took the opportunity to travel the world after completing her studies, and spent time exploring America & Canada, taking the opportunity to photograph some of the amazing buildings and artwork she saw on her travels.
Eve did a 9 month work experience in an architectural practice in Birmingham as part of her degree, but is keen to expand her existing skills and gain extra valuable experience during her time at Icon Exhibitions.
Eve says: “I was really pleased to hear that I could work at Icon. So far, I have found the experience very enjoyable, and feel that I’ve learned a great deal already. The team has been very helpful, and also been very patient with me whilst I learn the ropes. I really appreciate working with such great people, and am so grateful they’re happy to share their expertise with me”.
Outside work, Eve loves spending time with family & friends – especially seeing a good film or having a nice meal out, as well as enjoying the time she gets to spend doing photography, swimming, skiing and travelling. She’s also a self-confessed Pinterest addict, and likes storing her interior design inspirations.
Our new sign15.01.16
New Job for Will28.09.15
A chance meeting on a recent project has resulted in 22 year old Will joining the team at Icon Exhibitions. Originally from Uttoxeter, Will has recently finished his degree in Media and Communications at Birmingham City University and is now working towards a career as a graphic designer. He’s starting his career as a graphics assistant at Icon, helping with the team with its busy workload whilst gaining valuable work experience.
Will enjoys taking regular trips to the cinema to catch the latest movies and listens to a variety music styles outside of work.
Will says: “I am so grateful for the opportunity to work with such a great team and gain skills and experience that can only help me further my career as a graphic designer. There is always new and exciting work to get stuck into working for Icon and it makes working here all the more fun.”
New job for Josh29.07.15
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd has added a new member of staff to its team.
21 year old Joshua Fletcher-Johnson from Cannock has recently joined the team, having previously worked at a local screen printing business. Josh can utilise and enhance his current skillset for the work he’ll be involved in at Icon. For example, he’s enjoying looking at new print processes, including design, preparation, print and finishing techniques – and how this will help Icon improve its graphics department by offering other solutions from exhibition use to van graphics and producing visual displays of all shapes and sizes. He’s also enjoying working on-site and helping with the installation of exhibition stands at exhibition venues such as the NEC and Telford International Centre. Outside work, Josh enjoys drawing, photography, walking and spending time playing computer games.
Josh says: “I’m really enjoying working at Icon Exhibitions. Everyone is really friendly, and there’s lots more variety in what I do here than where I worked before, so I’m learning lots of new things and gaining valuable experience. It’s great!”
Icon gives local businesses an international edge21.05.15
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd is building a reputation for helping local businesses promote their brands internationally. It has recently helped two local businesses, Burntwood’s RGK Wheelchairs and West Bromwich based Majorsell exhibit at European trade shows to promote their products and services abroad.
RGK Wheelchairs needed to promote its bespoke, hand-made wheelchairs at Rehacare, the leading international rehabilitation and care exhibition in Dusseldorf, Germany, whilst Majorsell was looking to promote the company’s airbrake parts and compressors at Automechanika in Frankfurt.
Both RGK Wheelchairs and Majorsell received recommendations to speak to Icon Exhibitions, which has its head office and manufacturing facility on Watling Street Business Park, just off the A5 in Cannock.
Tiffany Clowes, Creative Marketing and Media Co-ordinator at RGK Wheelchairs says: “Rehacare is the biggest exhibition in our sector, so it was exceptionally important that our stand looked the best it possibly could. Despite a very tight time frame, the team at Icon Exhibitions went the extra mile and produced an exceptional stand for us – which generated a lot of interest and new leads.“
James Darwin, Purchasing Manager at Majorsell says: “We’ve exhibited in Frankfurt a number of times before as it’s the main show in our industry, but we felt we needed a fresh approach and some professional expertise to take the quality of our stand to the next level. Icon Exhibitions developed a design that made us stand out from the competition, and we got loads of positive feedback about the stand, plus lots of good leads. The best bit was that everything was all done for us – our team pretty much just had to turn up and start talking to potential customers!”
MD of Icon Exhibitions, Wayne Ball says: “It’s always difficult for companies needing a new supplier, especially when exhibiting at an important show when so much is at stake. We’re glad that Icon Exhibitions was recommended to RGK Wheelchairs and Majorsell, and are pleased that both companies are delighted with our work, as we’ve really enjoyed working with them on their projects.”
“Build it and they will come”04.12.14
The team at Icon Exhibition & Display Ltd get a very different view of popular exhibition venues like Telford Exhibition Centre, the NEC and Earl’s Court, as when they arrive, the halls are completely empty, except for lorries and contractors!
MD of Icon Exhibitions, Wayne Ball says: “It’s the only time you really get to appreciate the enormous size of some of the venues, as you can see the whole space before it gets filled with exhibition stands. It’s amazing seeing the transformation, as the stands get built and the carpet goes down ready for the doors to open and the visitors to come flooding in.”
Over its 20 years in business, Icon Exhibitions has built exhibition stands in probably every major UK venue, including the NEC, Earl’s Court, Olympia, Excel, Business Design Centre, Manchester Central, Harrogate, Ricoh and Stoneleigh (NAC), as well as in many venues abroad.
Udderly amazing display10.11.14
The team at Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd was udderly amazed to be asked to produce a replica model of a cow’s udder for a client who needed to demonstrate dairy cleaning equipment at an exhibition.
The model was put together at Icon’s 10,000 square foot manufacturing unit in Cannock for a client, before being delivered and set up at the show.
MD, Wayne Ball says: “Amazingly, a replica cow’s udder isn’t the strangest thing we’ve ever been asked to produce. The finished display looked good, and certainly created an interesting feature on the stand.”
Icon Exhibitions makes smart investment13.10.14
The team at Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd are now as smart in appearance as they are in their working practices, after the company invested in new branded clothing for its staff.
MD, Wayne Ball says, “We’re in the business of making companies look good and stand out from the crowd, so it’s important that Icon Exhibitions staff working on-site do the same. It gives us a professional appearance which matches our world renowned reputation for creating excellent quality exhibition and display solutions. We’re very pleased with the result.”
Icon Exhibitions works with local children to create out of this world display07.10.14
Icon Exhibition & Display Ltd recently helped a local school win a prize in the Great Wyrley 2014 carnival, by producing some display items for the school’s ‘Out of this World’ themed float.
The theme of this year’s carnival was ‘Space’, so the children enjoyed learning all about the solar system in their lessons, then used their new-found knowledge in an art project to create stars, moons and planets out of cardboard and other materials.
Other more complex display items, including stylised rockets and the sky backdrop and banners were created by the team at Icon Exhibition in its manufacturing unit in Cannock, before being delivered to Moat Hall Primary School for the teachers and children to put on the float with their other items to complete the display.
MD of Icon Exhibitions, Wayne Ball says: “Icon’s first commercial premises were in Great Wyrley, and we were located there until 2012 so we were delighted to be asked to help the school out with the carnival.”
Carol Parr, float organiser, said: “The float looked amazing, with a combination of the children’s creativity and Icon’s professional finishing touches. Many children became little spacemen and aliens for the day and you could say we were all ‘over the moon’ with the end result!”
Grand gesture for charity06.08.13
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd has donated £1000 to Birmingham Children’s Hospital, as an apology for sending out a postcard to some potential clients with underpaid postage.
MD Wayne Ball explains: “I’m sure we’re not the first company to make this error, and probably won’t be the last – but we’re glad some good can come out of bad, and are pleased it’s resulted in us donating money to a very good local cause.”
The donation has been made to Birmingham Children’s Hospital’s Cancer Centre Appeal. The £4m appeal aims to improve the lives of the 3,000 cancer patients and their families who are treated each year, by totally transforming the cancer unit facilities and accommodation at the hospital.
Emma Bryant, Corporate Partnerships Manager at the hospital said: “It’s refreshing to hear of a company admitting to a mistake and making a donation to apologise. We are grateful to Icon Exhibitions and Display Ltd for their kind donation, which will help our young cancer patients and their families.”
Praise for Icon from celebrity15.04.13
A stand produced by Icon Exhibitions has received praise from the UK’s best-selling cookery writer, Delia Smith.
Icon designed and manufactured a 10 x 4 metre stand for Birmingham bakeware company Alan Silverwood Ltd at the NEC’s Spring Fair, to launch Silverwood’s new range of ‘DeliaOnline’ branded bakeware.
Managing Director, Simon Silverwood says, “We were very happy with the exhibition stand Icon produced for us – it showcased our company and products superbly and provided the perfect backdrop for our new DeliaOnline range. This was the first time ever that Delia had put her name on a product, and we were very anxious that we should demonstrate our appreciation of this fantastic opportunity by exceeding her expectations. When Delia attended the fair, I was delighted to see that she was clearly impressed with the stand. In fact, she took the trouble to say how much she liked the design and presentation. Just as important was the reaction of our customers: since the Fair, we have seen a huge increase in orders. Thank you Icon: Job done!”
The exhibition stand was designed and produced in Icon’s new 10,000 square foot premises on Watling Street Business Park, just off the A5, that the company moved to at the start of 2013.
Wayne Ball, MD of Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd says, “It’s great that we’ve had chance to be involved in such an exciting product launch, and are thrilled that everyone was pleased with the end result, including Delia herself!”
Iconic fun for little tikes11.10.12
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd is working with an international toy manufacturer to create a new experience in high street stores.
The company has been commissioned by Little Tikes to create a ‘Little Tikes Village’ experience area in Mothercare’s flagship store.
Little Tikes is known for producing durable, imaginative fun products for kids, including the iconic red and yellow Cozy Coupe® car. The Little Tikes area in the store in Edmonton, North London, takes up 387 of the 30,000 square foot space in Mothercare’s largest UK store. The area has been built to create an area for parents to spend time with their toddlers and learn and play together.
Icon’s brief was to make the area look like an outside play area, and the team has certainly achieved that. The floor has artificial grass, with painted flowers and a road running along it. There’s a backdrop of a countryside scene, complete with rolling hills, sunshine and bright blue sky, and the area has a white picket fence around the perimeter. As well as the infamous Coupe® cars, kids can have fun playing with other Little Tikes products including slides, play-houses and swings.
MD of Icon Exhibitions, Wayne Ball says, “We’re delighted to be involved in such a wonderful project, working with such famous brands as Little Tikes at Mothercare. It was a fantastic project to work on!”
Gerry Tekerian, European Marketing Manager from Little Tikes says, “It’s been great working with Icon, and we’re over the moon with the superb quality craftsmanship that’s gone into creating such an eye-catching space. We’ve had an excellent reaction from both Mothercare management and store staff, and hope to extend this concept further. “
Display made in Cannock receives international acclaim14.09.12
A local business is putting Staffordshire on the map, gaining international acclaim for an exhibition stand manufactured in Cannock for a business in Lichfield.
The exhibition stand was built for client, One-LUX, in Icon Exhibition & Display’s 10,000 square feet premises in Great Wyrley, before being transported to Germany in time for the Light + Building show in Messe Frankfurt.
So eye-catching was One-LUX’s exhibition stand, with its black and bright green branding, large overhead arrows and 3D ‘running man’ character that a reporter from the show has been in touch wanting to run a piece about the stand in a German magazine!
As Glynnis Murray, Managing Director at One-LUX explains, “Although we were impressed that our stand was chosen to be featured, it didn’t come as a great surprise. We received so many compliments about the stand from customers and competitors whilst we were at the show, and even had a number of people asking if they could take photos of it. As well as being visually striking, the stand worked well from a functional perspective too, with plenty of display space, seating and storage.”
2012 is only the second time that One-LUX has exhibited at Light + Building. The company, which designs, develops and distributes a range of components for use in emergency lighting and lighting control applications, will be attending its first UK exhibition later this year, at Lux-Live in Earls Court in November, and will be calling on Icon’s exhibition expertise again then.
Wayne Ball, MD of Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd says: “We’re delighted that the stand has attracted so much positive attention for One-LUX, and helped put the company, and Staffordshire, firmly on the map.”
Dual dream for work duo17.04.12
A local MP has made childhood dreams come true for two workers at a Cannock business.
As well as sharing the same surname, colleagues Wayne Ball and Robert Ball both share a love of rugby, and had a dream that one-day their boots might run on the hallowed turf of the home of England rugby – Twickenham.
Thanks to the Conservative MP for Cannock Chase, Aidan Burley, their dream was realised recently, when both played in a game at the 82,000 seater stadium on April 17th 2012, watched by their family and friends.
Having thought any chances of glory at Twickenham had passed them by years ago, Wayne and Robert were selected to take the field in a combined XV, facing Common and Lords Parliamentary rugby team opponents at the largest dedicated rugby union venue in the world, in a game organised specifically to raise money for the RFU Injured Players Foundation.
The pair, who work for Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd in Great Wyrley, were thrilled to learn that they were both picked to play. Both play for Cannock Rugby Club, where Wayne usually plays as a back row flanker and Robert plays scrum half. The team that played at Twickenham was put together from Aidan’s constituency, which contains two local rival rugby clubs, Cannock and Rugeley. Icon Exhibitions provided blue and black rugby shirts for the Cannock and Rugeley team, as well as being the team’s shirt sponsor.
Wayne Ball says, “It’s every rugby player’s ambition to play at Twickenham, and the fact that we raised a lot of money for a good charity at the same time was just a bonus. This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us to play on the pitch and the whole experience was just amazing, from being in the changing rooms to walking out of the tunnel, to the game itself. We enjoyed meeting new team mates from the Rugeley club and giving the Commons and Lords Parliamentary team a challenging game.”
MP Aidan Burley comments, “I was delighted to have been able to offer this opportunity to Cannock and Rugeley rugby clubs, and I know how much it meant to the lads to run out on the pitch at Twickenham.”
The match raised £10,000 for the RFU Injured Players Foundation, and a cheque was presented on the day.
All hands to the pump at home AND abroad18.04.11
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd had to pull out all the stops recently when one of its clients needed a stand for a show in the UK, and one in Dubai – at exactly the same time!
As a worldwide player in its marketplace, BAE Systems needed a presence at the UITP (International Association of Public Transport) exhibition in Dubai but also needed a stand at the Commercial Vehicle Show at the NEC. Both events were happening in the same 4 day period.
Fortunately, the experienced team at Icon is used to dealing with multiple projects and has a plethora of international exhibition experience – so knew exactly what had to be done to ensure success for BAE Systems at both shows, home and abroad!
From its manufacturing premises in Great Wyrley, transporting the exhibition stand and components for the working product demonstrations to the NEC was no problem, being just a short trip down the road.However, planning the stand at the UITP World Congress in Dubai took somewhat more planning. With gearboxes, and truck and bus engines to transport, one very heavy container had to be transported by sea, in plenty of time before the show. This was then followed by the team of Icon exhibition builders who flew out to erect the stand in time for the opening, then dismantle the stand and ship everything back to the UK at the end of the show.
MD of Icon, Wayne Ball says, “This could have been a nightmare for a less experienced exhibition company, but fortunately it’s all in a day’s work for us. Our years in the exhibition business mean we’ve got good systems in place to project manage each exhibition from start to finish, including building in some necessary contingency plans.”
Icon Exhibitions are ‘Good to Go’02.12.10
A local company is helping to increase workplace safety in its own business and others, through an innovative safe equipment management system.
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd has become the local distributor for ‘Good to Go’, a system which helps to increase workplace safety and reduce the risk of accidents.
Wayne Ball from Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd explains: “ ‘Good to Go’ is necessary because many accidents are caused by operatives assuming equipment is safe to operate, just because it seemed to worked fine the last time it was used. Statistics show that more than 200 people are killed at work in the UK each year. Employers have a duty of care to ensure all employees are adequately informed of potential hazards, and ‘Good to Go’ is a simple way to do this.”
The ‘Good to Go’ system eradicates these assumptions by attaching a small, yet robust, sealed pod to all equipment. The pod contains a record of all safety checks and other relevant information. This can easily be referred to by operatives before use, to give them accurate information about the state of the equipment, whether it’s ‘good to go’ or not safe to use. There is also an auditable trail, with a duplicate copy of each safety check recorded separately for easy reference.
The show must go on11.04.10
A local company battled against nature to complete their international contracts when European planes were grounded due to the Iceland volcano last week.
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd were working on three stands at the Light+Building show in Messe Frankfurt when they heard the news about the potential volcanic ash problem. Icon immediately put contingency plans into place, and booked spaces on ferries to ensure they didn’t let their clients down.
One of the stands was for One-LUX Ltd, a Lichfield based company that started up in the recession, so who’s presence at the show was crucial to raise awareness internationally and help business growth.
Wayne Ball, MD of Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd says: “Even though this was a natural disaster that no-one could plan for, we acted early and did as much as possible to ensure we were able to fulfil the promises made to our clients. I’m glad to say that we succeeded.”
Glynnis Murray, Director at One-LUX says: “We’re very grateful to the team at Icon for helping ensure everything went to plan and there were no issues. The stand Icon created for us exceeded our expectations and looked phenomenal, and was so eye-catching that many visitors and exhibitors actually stopped to take a photograph of it!”
Better leads as a result of recession15.09.09
Despite the recession, one local business owner is being told by his customers that every cloud has a silver lining and, amongst the doom and gloom, the downturn is creating at least one positive effect on business.
The team at Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd iwere anticipating that customer feedback from exhibitions this year would be less positive than usual – but instead their customers are telling them just the opposite!
Although visitor footfall at shows might be lower in 2009 than in other years, many of Icon’s customers are saying that the quality of leads being generated at shows is of a much better quality than normal.
One Icon customer said, “In our experience of exhibiting during this year’s recession, it seems that the people who are continuing to attend exhibitions have serious business enquiries, resulting in good quality leads being generated for exhibitors despite the lower visitor numbers.”
Wayne Ball, MD at Icon Exhibitions says, “Exhibitions remain a vital way for companies to meet new customers. If budgets are limited, businesses should first think about downsizing their stand presence rather than pulling out of an exhibition altogether. That way, companies can still continue to generate new business leads, keep in touch with customers, and sell and promote their products and services”.
New technology for Icon Exhibitions20.09.08
A local company is investing in state-of-the-art technology to speed up production times for their clients.
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd recognised the need to invest in an AXYZ A008 CNC router to replace the hand-held routers, jigsaws and band saws currently used in the business.
The investment in the £30,000 machine will help the company with their exhibition, shopfitting and signage projects and will improve the way work is undertaken at Icon – by reducing cost and increasing performance and quality. The investment in the CNC router will also enable Icon to increase the number of services and the range of products on offer to their clients, due to the machine’s immense flexibility.
Wayne Ball, MD of Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd says, “CNC routing is the way forward for us to continue to grow our business and offer an enhanced range of services to our clients. The benefits are already exceeding the investment, in terms of decreasing production time, enabling us to take on more jobs, and allowing us to undertake work we couldn’t do before”.
All aboard for exhibition abroad02.02.08
A local company is working on an exhibition that will showcase both at home and abroad for a leading British manufacturer.
Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd is building two stands for Alexander Dennis, the UK’s leading bus and coach manufacturer.
The first show, APTA (American Public Transport Association) will be held in San Diego, America during October. All elements of the exhibition stand will be manufactured in the UK and shipped out to the United States ready to be assembled at the San Diego Convention Centre.
Closer to home, the second stand is for the Eurobus Expo exhibition in November at the NEC.
Wayne Ball, MD of Icon Exhibitions & Display Ltd says, “Despite being shown at different exhibitions across the pond, both stands have a uniform look, tailored to the different markets. We’ve undertaken work for Alexander Dennis for several years, and it’s great that we’ve been asked to manage their exhibitions for them again, utilising our years of experience in the exhibition industry.”