Countdown to 30: An interview with Justin Phillips
As our 30th Birthday is just around the corner, we sit down with our friend Justin Phillips, the European Sales Director at Freeman, to find out more about their role at the BDC…
As you know it is the BDC’s 30th Birthday next month, can you tell me a little bit more about how long Freeman has been around and what they do?
“We’ve been around for nearly 90 years! Freeman was founded in 1927 in the US, and entered the EMEA market in March 2013. Freeman is a global business, and employs more than 7,000 people throughout the world, 250 of whom work out of our Ryton facility in the Midlands.
We are recognised by Advertising Age as one of the world’s largest brand experience companies, and specialise in connecting people through integrated digital and live brand experiences.
Collaboration is key at Freeman, and we work with event organisers, exhibitors and venues as their strategic partners to connect people in meaningful ways. We provide core general contractor services and various bespoke services from strategy and creative to production – including state-of-the-art graphics and custom-built stands, as well as digital and event technology services to amplify brand experiences beyond the show floor. We really are a one-stop shop for event organisers and exhibitors.’
Freeman is committed to the continuous improvement of our processes and operations, to ensure we continue to deliver meaningful and measurable brand experiences for our clients and their customers into the future.”
Freeman has been a BDC partner for quite a while now, what’s so great about working at the BDC?
“I really admire how the BDC embraces all of its partners, so you feel as though you’re a part of their team. They treat everyone in the same way, which is really great for on-site morale and ensures we all work together to achieve a common goal – the best experience for the visitors and event attendees, as that’s the ultimate measure of a successful event. Everyone at the BDC is proud to work under the brand.”
You work across a few different venues, what makes us stand out?
“The BDC is steeped in tradition and family-owned like Freeman, plus its size and back-to-back, fully sold events make it quite unique to London.”
Tell me a little bit about what events you work on at the BDC and which is the most exciting?
“We are proud to be such a longstanding partner of the BDC and work on every event that the venue hosts, which makes this question quite a tricky one – they are all great in their own unique way!
I particularly like Country Living magazine’s London Christmas Fair in November, because it has a really nice festive feel to it. It’s always a busy one and looks and smells great. I am also a fan of the annual London Art Fair event in January, where more than 100 pieces of carefully curated contemporary art, which have been sourced from across the globe, are put on show for all to see.”
The BDC culture is very unique and we’ve heard that Freeman is a fun place to work at too. Tell me more… (I heard about the Dominoes delivery on Thanks Giving!)
“Freeman is a family-owned business that is passionate about its people, and we’ve got a great company culture as a result. As a relative newcomer to the EMEA market at just three years old we offer a fresh and unique take on the exhibitions industry, yet at the same time our people have years of industry experience, and we’re all passionate about delivering the best possible events for our clients and their attendees.”
I really love working with the talented people across all of our departments, and there is a great social side, too, with various employee events held throughout the year, from appreciation days to Great British Bake Off-themed baking competitions! We’re very similar to the BDC in that way – our people are key.”
Why not take a look at our other Countdown to 30 blogs to find out more about the venue!
Posted by Charlotte.