Eric Faurot, who joined CMP with the acquisition of MediaLive International in January, is responsible for the strategy and management of the events portfolio of CMP's Business Technology Group. He was hired as VP-general manager of Comdex in March 2003 by Key3Media, the producer of the giant IT show. Key3Media filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 in February 2003, with its assets forming the foundation of a new company, MediaLive International, in June of that year.
Media Business: Comdex was "postponed" in 2004 and has not been held since. What did you learn while trying to revive it?
Faurot: There was a huge downturn in the IT marketplace [in the early 2000s], but that wasn't the biggest problem. The [previous] Comdex producers abused the power they had when Comdex was big. They forgot exhibitors were their partners.
MB: Last month, CMP Technology and O'Reilly Media hosted their third Web 2.0 Conference, renamed the Web 2.0 Summit, and announced a new trade show, the Web 2.0 Expo, for next April. What is the thinking behind this?
Faurot: CMP's event strategy is to have the leading brands in emerging, accelerating and established technology markets that matter. The emerging and accelerating events are vertical in nature, and we leverage the relationships in each vertical market to strengthen our position in the adjacent and umbrella markets. Web 2.0 is incredibly powerful part of our portfolio as it allows us to have really strong relationships with the people and companies that are defining the next-generation Internet.