Feb 14, 2020 • 4 min read

Recapping the 2020 IABSC Summit

by Cassandra McAllister

In January 2020, the International Association of Baggage Handling System Companies (IABSC) hosted their annual summit. This year’s theme was ‘A Call to Action’. It was a chance for industry leaders to come meet and discuss the current state of the industry, as well as to prepare for the future.

Recapping the 2020 IABSC Summit

The International Association of Baggage Handling System Companies (IABSC) consider themselves the sector’s foremost ambassador—hosting a summit every year. At the end of January, industry leaders met in Dallas for 2020’s event. The theme was “A Call to Action”. This was evident in the presentations and panel discussions that took place over the one-and-a-half-day conference. Throughout, it was recognized how rare it is for stakeholders to meet and discuss the previous lessons learned, talk about the current state of the industry, and plan for innovations as well as the future. However, everyone in attendance also agreed on the value this brought to the whole industry.

The event provided a combination of educational presentations, open-forum panel discussions, and great networking opportunities. A few key themes that were very evident were:

  • Creating a continuity of knowledge by sharing experiences between industry veterans and newcomers across equipment manufacturers, airports, airlines, etc.
  • The importance of cyber security within the industry as data and technology become more prevalent in baggage handling systems, airports, and airlines in general.
  • The power of data and technology in the industry and the potential growth the two will influence within the coming years.

Highlights from some of our team who attended:

Garrett Kelly: Garrett Kelly is the Sales Manager for Daifuku Airport Technologies’ North American Division. Garrett most valued the chance to meet with other industry professionals. He noted that it is not often representatives from so many companies across the BHS sector are all in the same room, at the same time. However, Garret believes the IABSC did an excellent job of providing a variety of opportunities for attendees to network. A particular highlight f was a private networking event held at the Perot Museum, where attendees were able to walk through the museum and connect with one another throughout the evening.

Terry DiSalle: Terry DiSalle served on the IABSC Board for the past two years. He is a member of Daifuku Airport Technologies’ North American Division’s sales team. Terry believed the most important part of the summit had to do with airport planning. Terry valued the “Building the Airport Around the Baggage System” presentation by Mark Duebner, Director of Aviation at Dallas Love Field, which spoke of the cost-savings that would occur if airports were built around the BHS instead of the other way around.

Cassandra McAllister: Cassandra McAllister is Daifuku Airport Technologies’ North American Marketing and Communications Coordinator. New to the industry, Cassandra’s favorite part of the conference was the Young Professionals Networking Event. As a committee member, Cassandra assisted in planning the event that took place the night before the summit began. It was a unique opportunity for young professionals to gather and discuss their various roles in the industry. She also enjoyed the panel discussion on “Airport Lessons Learned” from recently completed airport projects. Representatives from airports and airlines briefly discussed their recently completed projects, and what they learned throughout them. Cassandra found it fascinating to hear the various lessons and explore how the industry might apply these in future projects. Afterward, the panel was open to questions and discussions facilitating a deeper dive into project specifics.

Don Simmons: Don Simmons is the Director of Business Development for the Operations and Maintenance division of Daifuku Airport Technologies. Don said two quotes from a day-two panel presentation strongly resonated with him. “If we want to be a smart organization, we must be willing to learn.” And, “If we want to do more than survive, we must adapt and differentiate to grow. Otherwise, we will be passed by.” Don said he intends to apply these sentiments into his sales efforts and future initiatives.

Daifuku Airport Technologies is a proud member of the IABSC and looks forward to watching the organization’s continuing growth. We offer a sincere thanks to the IABSC’s Board of Directors, as well as to all who played a role in planning the year’s summit. Attendees unanimously agreed that it was an incredibly successful event.

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