When Bankstone News confessed to a colleague this week that we were sorely afflicted with BIBA Fever, they professed themselves similarly afflicted and launched into a torrent of luridly lascivious amatorial anecdotes. Quickly apprehending that the person in question had misheard our confession, we interrupted to explain that the febrility to which we alluded related to the imminent prospect of attending a trade conference for insurance folks in London’s Docklands, to whit: BIBA 2013 ‘Mee^ing ^he Grow^h Cha££enge’.

Spread languorously over two days and a vast acreage of brightly carpeted indoor concrete within the cavernous ExCess conference centre, conveniently located alongside East London’s Royal Victoria Dock, the BIBA conference was much more than just a racy catwalk show highlighting the latest BIBA lingerie range and some skimpy pole dance outfits gamely modeled by employees of one London market broking team. There were also fascinating speeches by luminaries such as former Labour minister David Millipede, former cyclist Chris Ahoy, and former tv dragon Cruella Devey, who cracked a great joke about hedgehogs, Porsches and prickles.

In the time honoured BIBA tradition, lots of middle aged men (and they were mostly men) in grey suits drank free-flowing booze from plastic cups whilst discussing “football and music and wine and whatever you want to talk about” and eating things, of course. Post Magazine’s Andy Pearce took the eating thing to heroic extremes in a Man v Food style attempt to eat as much free food as possible inside half an hour – a feat memorably recorded (with Wagnerian soundtrack) amongst other things here.

The standard of stands was outstanding, with Ageas (Formerly Group Armagh) winning the best big stand award and Home & Leprosy romping home in the best small stand category. Staff on the Ageas stand, however, were less than thrilled with lapel badges too easily confused with those of London Transport employees – with the unfortunate consequence that they spent much of the show responding to travel-related enquiries and complaints.

Next year’s BIBA conference, delegates learned, will be heading north again to Manchester on the 14th and 15th of May. If this year’s conference is anything to judge by, that’s one event that’s sure be very very similar!



No responses yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *