RealTime IT News

Internet World Israel Expecting Big Crowd Despite Economic Slump

Tel Aviv -- Organizers and exhibitors of Internet World Israel 2001 were busy with last minute preparations at the Tel Aviv Fairgrounds on Sunday.

The three-day event, which features displays from more than 170 exhibitors, begins Monday.

Dahlia Pelled, chief executive officer of People and Computers, organizers of the event, said that 23,000 people had registered for this year's Internet World, with more than 1,000 new registrants on Sunday alone.

She said that the organizers had taken great care to ensure that the event draws a quality audience.

"Internet World is not for the general public, but for business professionals," Pelled said. "According to our records, approximately 60 percent of attendees are high-tech professionals. The other 40 percent are in management."

Pelled said that the event has proven to be a big draw even during this time of crisis for many high-tech companies.

"Times are difficult for high tech. We believe the technology will continue in spite of all that," she said.

Exhibitors will be showcasing innovations in the Internet, IT and eBusiness fields and range from big-name international corporations such as Microsoft, IBM and Oracle, to Israel-based companies such as Check Point, Sivan, Teldor and Yael Software.

Exhibitors were putting the finishing touches on their displays, girding themselves for tomorrow's opening, while hoping for big crowds.

"We're hoping a lot of people will come and see us," said David Friedland of Karatsoft, a graphic and publishing software company. "That's really the only reason why we're here."

Friedland said that although Karatsoft's business is not exclusively involved with the Web, it is "very Internet oriented" which is what makes Internet World an important event for them.

For Israel Kleinberger of business-to-business online marketplace provider Effective Purchase, Internet World is as much a networking opportunity as a chance to improve their exposure.

"We're here to speak with other companies in our field, and others," Kleinberger says, "as well as to be seen."

Besides business displays and presentations, Internet World will feature more than a dozen mini-conferences, featuring lectures from major corporate players on the Internet scene.

Topics such as "Facing the Current Crisis in High Tech" and "No e-security, no e-business" will be punctuated by speakers including Microsoft EMEA chairman Michel Lacombe, Backweb Technology chief executive Eli Barkat, IBM Israel general manager Meir Nissensohn and Compaq director of business development John Ingvarsson.

The new feature for this year's Internet World is eBtoB Live, a central exhibition that focuses on eCommerce and eMarketplaces. EBtoB Live is indicative of the changes in Internet World in response to changes in the face of the Internet itself, said Sarah Crawford, director of international relations for People and Computers.

"Internet World has been moving away from business-to-consumer in favor of business-to-business," she said. "eBtoB Live is an outgrowth of an eBusiness conference we held in Tel Aviv in February."

Crawford said that registration for Internet World was roughly the same as last year, which she said was encouraging in light of the economic situation. However, she said, the organizers have had to work harder this year.

Visit israel.internet.com's exhibit at Internet World Israel 2001, Building 31B. We'll give you a gift if you tell us you saw the reference on this Web site.