UK comic cons continue to boom as MCM visitor and exhibitor numbers hit record levels in 2016
MCM’s 2016 events saw a record total attendance of 489,600 visitors – 13 per cent up on last year’s total of 431,700 – new figures from the UK’s leading comic con organiser have revealed. Meanwhile, exhibitor number at MCM shows saw a whopping 32 per cent year-on-year growth, soaring from 596 exhibitors in 2015 to 787 exhibitors in 2016.
Attendance at MCM’s flagship London Comic Con, now the third largest event of its kind in the world behind San Diego and New York, broke the 130,000 visitor mark at both its 2016 editions – with May’s show attracting a record 133,150 and the October show 131,300.
Other established MCM events enjoying increased visitor numbers in 2016 include Scotland Comic Con, with the Glasgow show attracting 32,000 visitors compared to 28,000 in 2015; Manchester Comic Con, where attendance rose from 36,300 to 38,600; and Northern Ireland Comic Con, whose attendance jumped from 10,400 to 12,400.
The year also saw MCM launch a number of brand new shows at home and abroad, including comic cons in Liverpool (which brought in crowds of over 23,000) and Hannover (which saw c.10,000 visitors). However, MCM’s biggest expansion of 2016 was its acquisition of Summer in the City, the UK’s largest and most prestigious YouTube festival.
Away from the show floor, MCM’s 2016 saw the company restructure to meet its expanding role – taking on more staff, adopting ‘MCM Central’ as its new core brand and appointing experienced events professional Gital Tete as its Chief Operating Officer. Formerly Business Development Manager at Artexis Easyfairs and Head of Events at Artexis Nordic, Gital Tete officially takes up the post on 1 January 2017.
“2016 has been an extremely busy year for MCM, but also one that paves the way for an even more successful 2017,” said MCM Central CEO Bryan Cooney. “Not only have London Comic Con and our other core comic con events continued to grow, but the company has expanded its portfolio of events through the acquisition of Summer in the City – an event we’ve long admired – and the launch of new shows in both the UK and mainland Europe.
“In addition to an increased focus on online video thanks to our new links with Summer in the City, MCM has worked throughout the year to up our shows’ appeal for families with children – promoting our ‘kids go free’ offer and adding a new Kid Zone to our comic cons.”
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