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10 Nov 2022

Event Manager (Defence)

The Opportunity:

Clarion is renowned for being entrepreneurial and flexible in our approach to focusing on our customers and ensuring we only deliver platforms of the highest quality within our markets. We also look to innovate and create new offerings to directly meet the ever evolving needs of our wide ranging customers.

The Defence & Security Portfolio has a series of market-leading events currently based in the UK, USA, Europe and Asia. These range from confex style events to large scale exhibitions. All are market leaders within their ‘space’ and the next 12 months will see us continue to expand and innovate both in new geographies and on new platforms.

A new addition to this portfolio is the US-based, SOF Week (previously SOFIC) who is held annually in May in Tampa, Florida. We have won the management contract to execute this event alongside an existing partner of ours, Global SOF Foundation. The event has been running for over 30 years and 2022 (when it was organised by another party) saw 16000 attendees and 600 exhibitors. This is the focal point of the US special forces calendar and supposedly has had a waiting list of over 300 companies year after year. We have won this contract by outlining exciting plans for maximising stand space and developing numerous new initiatives that focus back on the special forces community. We also currently run a European based event for this community alongside the GSOF Foundation. This role will cover both events.

With this new addition and also some exciting growth plans for the wider portfolio – now is an exciting time to be joining both this portfolio and Clarion Events.

The Candidate:

We are looking for an experienced sales and project management professional who has a proven track record in key account management, achieving new business targets and overall project management of a trade exhibition. This pre-dominantly exhibitor facing role will support the Director by assuming full responsibility for a number of key areas within the event, including guiding and driving the sales to achieve and exceed target with the management of the sales executives, international sales agents and sponsorship agents.

This candidate must also have experience of working with the marketing function to deliver an ex-prom strategy to ensure revenue milestones are achieved. This role will also lead on an exhibitor customer care programme alongside marketing and our customer service team to ensure that the highest standard of care is provided to all exhibitors and sponsors irrespective of their size of investment.

The role will also involve liaison with the VIP, operations and content teams to ensure all the key event elements are on schedule and delivering value, whilst contributing to P&L management and forecasting.

Key Responsibilities:

Achieve/exceed sales targets:

  • Maximise all potential revenue
  • Maximise sponsorship sales via third party agent from existing and new clients
  • Write, execute and manage the sales plan
  • Write and action major account plans and competitive strategies

Reporting and forecasting:

  • Report on sales activity and sales results
  • Maintain an up to date pipeline document with accurate forecasting
  • Deliver weekly and monthly sales forecasting
  • Ensure P&L is continuously updated with accurate revenue forecasts


  • Recommend marketing initiatives to promote product to potential and existing exhibitors globally
  • Work with marketing to organise ex prom activities, ensuring they are carried out efficiently and within agreed budgets, including presence at other events
  • Provide on-going recommendations to the visitor campaign that will deliver exhibitor benefits

Stakeholder and Key Account Management:

  • Work with external stakeholders to manage and increase all areas of their engagement with the event
  • Development of KAM plans with US partner to ensure ROI and ROE is achieved by key customers
  • Represent the event at key UK and international functions and groups

Operations & Sales Admin:

  • Maintain and manage the floorplan and ensure sales team update it correctly
  • Fully support admin and processes day to day and lead the sales team by example with SF reporting, pipelines
  • Ensure the exhibitor list is correct and the team maintain, develop and manage database records and sales communication
  • Liaising with accounts to ensure invoicing and revenue collection is taking place in a timely fashion
  • Ensuring critical event functions are informed of event timelines and key event initiatives to maximise their effectiveness across each event cycle
  • Supervise key account management across marketing, sponsorship and customer service team

Knowledge, Skills, Attitude and Behaviour:

You will have a proven track record in key account management, achieving new business targets and overall project management of a trade exhibition

Knowledge/Experience of:

  • Sales management and coaching
  • Lead sales best practice across team using sales data & insight tools to drive better results and decisions
  • Man management & team motivation
  • P&L budget management, reporting and forecasting
  • Salesforce experience an advantage 

Experience of:

  • Excellent leadership, management, interpersonal and communication skills
  • Experience of detailed sales planning
  • Maximising the opportunity by accurate analysis of competitors
  • Demonstrate Clarions core values - Passion, Care, Imagination and Trust

About Clarion Events

Clarion Events is one of the world’s leading event organisers, producing and delivering innovative and market-leading events since 1947. (

Clarion Events embrace diversity and equal opportunities in all that we do. We are committed to building a team that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills. The more inclusive we are, the better our work will be.

Clarion is private equity backed and owned by Blackstone. Blackstone is one of the world’s leading global investment funds, investing capital for the long term in order to build successful, resilient businesses. (

Our purpose is to deliver exceptional customer outcomes and experiences, by making every connection count.

Our vision is we want every one of our products to be a market leader in customer satisfaction and delight

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