IACC Cancels its Annual Conference 2020 Amidst COVID-19 Concerns
Washington, DCÐ February 17, 2020 – For the first time in its history, the International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition (IACC) canceled its Annual Conference scheduled for April 22-24 in Singapore due to growing concern of the COVID-19 outbreak’s and the virus’s impact on the health and safety of its attendees. The IACC’s Annual Conference is the premier international anti-counterfeiting event and has hosted thousands of anti-counterfeiting experts and professionals for more than 30 years.
On February 7th, Singapore’s Ministry of Health raised its Disease Outbreak Response System Condition to “Orange,” which indicates the virus’s moderate to high public health impact, and issued advice to event organizers to “cancel or defer non-essential large-scale events.”
In light of the Singapore Ministry of Health’s advisory and after in-depth discussions with the organization’s leadership, including its Board of Directors, the IACC informed its network of contacts on February 14th that it would cancel its Annual Conference.
Given the considerable number of registrations, sponsors and exhibitors already committed to the Annual Conference, the organization’s decision to announce the cancellation was further complicated by the fact that the International Trademark Association (INTA) had not yet made a public announcement cancelling or postponing their event. The IACC’s Annual Conference has preceded INTA’s meeting for decades, and while the size of IACC’s event is just a fraction of INTA’s, there is substantial overlap in attendees. Although canceling the event would pose logistical issues to many attendees, the situation called for decisive action.
“Our attendees’ health and safety are our utmost priority,” said Bob Barchiesi, IACC President. “This was a truly difficult decision for us considering the significance of the event for the IACC and for anti-counterfeiting professionals worldwide.”
Over the next few weeks, the IACC will work with the conference venue and hotel to determine alternative options for its Annual Conference.
“We offer our support and sympathy to all of those who’ve been impacted by the virus around the world, and we are thankful for the support of our Conference Co-Chairs, sponsors, exhibitors, and conference attendees. I want to thank everyone for their patience as we work to resolve this issue,” said Mr. Barchiesi.
The World Health Organization (WHO) reported over 71,000 laboratory confirmed cases of the COVID-19 across 25 countries, resulting in over 1,700 deaths.
About the IACC Annual Conference
The IACC’s Annual Conference combines the industry’s most up-to-date information and best practices with top leaders from the frontlines of the business, security, government, and legal communities. The Annual Conference not only convenes the organization’s close-knit community of industry experts and senior level law enforcement to network and share ideas, it also brings together the organization’s strategic partners and industry attendees to forge and strengthen collaboration.
The IACC (www.iacc.org) is a Washington, DC-based not for profit organization representing the interests of companies concerned with trademark counterfeiting and the related theft of intellectual property. The members of the IACC include many of the world’s best-known brands across all product sectors. The IACC has played a leading role in raising awareness about the dangers of counterfeit products to consumers, highlighting the issue in national media, such as The Dr. Oz Show and in international media, such as Russian Television.