LDC Top 50 2021
The G7 Summit, Cornwall. NATO Leaders Summit, London. The upcoming UN Climate Change Conference, Glasgow. What do all these events have in common? Michael Gietzen’s Identity, the specialist agency in big-ticket, high stakes events.
“We have rapidly become one of the events industry’s major players,” he says. Michael is a former chartered accountant who fell into events when he joined his father’s exhibitions business. He has grown Identity into a global powerhouse. He says: “There’s nothing that motivates me more than seeing our events televised and reported on to millions around the world.”
There’s nothing that motivates me more than seeing our events televised and reported on to millions around the world.”
How did you get into the events industry?
I am a chartered accountant by profession. I got involved with my dad’s business in 2009; he’d been in the events trade most of his life. I rebranded it as Identity, Dad retired, and began targeting really big projects for big brands.
What’s your proudest moment in business?
We delivered the G7 Summit in Cornwall this year. That was a very big complex event. The first international live event since the pandemic. Biden’s first visit. It was extremely high profile and it couldn’t have gone better. There’s nothing that motivates me more than seeing our events televised to millions around the world. I go home to my family and tell my kids, ‘Daddy did that one.’
How do you champion sustainability?
Championing sustainability is a huge part of our agenda. We are pioneers in a sector where it’s notoriously difficult to manage waste. We look at supply chain management, the way we’re travelling, the materials we use… Every element of our events is scrutinised and we challenge clients on the brief we receive. ‘Do you need it?’ is the first question we ask. That goes against the grain because we don’t make money from the things we don’t sell. We are also sustainability and plastic-free champions – certified in 2019.