View All News
May 18, 2016

Sustainability Efforts in Cobo Center Are Attracting Green Events

DETROIT May 18, 2016 -- Claude Molinari, general manager of Cobo Center reports today that Cobo will host the flagship Sustainable Brands® conference in 2017. This event, held in San Diego the last few years, has relocated to Detroit.

“We are having a terrific year for events in Cobo,” said Molinari. “And with the improvements in our sustainability program, including kitchen and food court composting, we expect to attract more green events in the near future.”

In 2015, Cobo achieved the Green Meetings Industry Council’s APEX/ASTM standard certification, and was the ninth convention center to do so. Local recognition for sustainability includes awards from Detroit EcoWorks, Keep Michigan Beautiful and recognition as a Michigan Green Leader by the Detroit Free Press.

“Sustainable Brands has been committed to reducing and managing the environmental impact of our flagship conference for years now and we are excited to be bringing our community to Cobo Center in May 2017,” states David Fiss, Executive Producer of Live Events at Sustainable Brands. “In 2013, we were the first event organizer in North America to achieve conformity to the ISO 20121 Standard requiring event organizers to identify and understand the effects that their activities have on the environment, society and the economy. We embrace the opportunity to work with the team at Cobo in the coming months and support their continued sustainability leadership in this industry."

The number of events at Cobo Center continues to increase year over year, as reflected in the increase in total event income of approximately 15% after the first six months of the 2016 fiscal year. And customer satisfaction is at an all time high at 90% or above in all areas of operation, according to the recent quarterly customer survey report, compiled by e-autofeedback, a standard event industry survey provider.

“We consider our sustainability measures part of our overall technology offering in Cobo,” said Greg DeSandy, director of sales and event services at Cobo Center. “Every aspect of technology in Cobo now creates an integrated tool set for event branding. Green events and all events can use these branding tools to promote sponsors, generate revenue and report event sustainability data to their constituents.”

In 2014 Cobo Center added giant exterior digital signs and 100 meeting room message boards to the technology offering and both are used to eliminate paper use and highlight sustainability to local, national and international attendees and media.

“We believe it's important for a facility, that generates such a great amount of waste, to do something to offset its carbon footprint,” said Molinari “This came to the forefront of our operation as something to differentiate Cobo from our main competition in trying to procure events. Green event support at Cobo is provided at no charge to the customer.”

About Cobo Center: With 723,000 square feet of exhibit space, Cobo Center boasts one of the largest contiguous exhibit floor spaces in North America and is the 17th largest convention center in the country.  Visit online at www.cobocenter.com  View the Cobo Green Initiatives at: http://www.cobocenter.com/green_initiatives_1

About SMG: Founded in 1977, SMG provides management services to 233 public assembly facilities including convention and exhibition centers, arenas, stadiums, theaters, performing arts centers, equestrian facilities, science centers and a variety of other venues. With facilities across the globe, SMG manages more than 15 million square feet of exhibition space and more than 1.5 million sports and entertainment seats. SMG provides venue management, sales, marketing, event booking and programming, construction and design consulting, and pre-opening service. . For more information visit www.smgworld.com.

About the DRCFA: On 9/15/09, operational control of Cobo Center transferred to the Detroit Regional Convention Facility Authority, under a collaborative agreement by the Michigan State Legislature, the City of Detroit, and Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. Each of these entities has an appointed member on the DRCFA Board. Larry Alexander is Chairman the Board as the member appointed by the Governor of the State of Michigan. For more information visit: http://www.drcfa.org/