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Successful 71st IUCAB Delegates Meeting in Vienna, Austria

From 9th to 11th May 2024, Vienna, IUCAB’s headquarters, was the backdrop for this year’s Annual Meeting. Presidents, secretaries and lawyers of 15 Member Associations came together and discussed the ongoing issues referring to the profession. Many thanks to the Austrian member association WKO Sales Agents, which hosted the perfectly organised annual conference.

One day before the Delegates Meeting, on 9th May, the Secretaries met and gave an overview of the activities in their national associations. Furthermore, the Members of the Legal Working Group exchanged information on the recent case law according to the commercial agents.

The event on Friday, 10th May began with a warm welcome from the IUCAB President, Olivier Mazoyer, who set the tone for a day of co-operation and progress. Rainer Trefelik, President of the Austrian Federal Trade Division, then transmitted his greetings and emphasised the importance of cooperation in the global trade landscape.

The agenda was comprehensive and reflected the complexity of today’s trade. Christian Rebernig, the IUCAB Secretary General, presented the annual report with insights into the organisation’s activities and achievements over the past year. IUCAB will continue with the social media activities and is still increasing the number of followers on LinkedIn. One highlight was the presentation of the relaunched IUCAB website including a SEO optimisation to increase traffic and to improve the ranking. Additionally, the Associations were asked to send short video clips from their members to use it on social media and the website.

Axel Sturmberger and Ralf D. Scholz’s terms as IUCAB Vice-Presidents expired in May 2024. They both were elected for a next three-year-term. Also Enric Enrech’s 4th term expired. He did not candidate for a next term. Ricard Penas has applied for the office of Vice-President and was unanimously approved at the meeting. Christian Rebernig was confirmed as Secretary General for another term of two years.

Marco Righetti is the new chairman of the Training Selection Committee as Jaques Delétang retired. 15 National or Regional Member Associations fullfill the requirements according to IUCAB Training Standards and are allowed to use the IUCAB Training Label. The following association received a confirmation: APAC (France), ARAA (Southeast-European countries), ATPS (Sweden), CDH (Germany), CAMEX (Peru), CCRA (Cyprus), The MAA (United Kingdom & Ireland), CGAC, COAC Barcelona, COAC Valencia (Spain), FNAC (France), USARCI, USARCI Piedmont (Italy), VNHI (The Netherlands) and WKO Sales Agents (Austria).

In a rapidly evolving global economy, knowledge exchange and innovation are paramount. Therefore, IUCAB applied for an EU Erasmus+ project called LUCA (Leveling Up Commercial Agents’ Competencies). The 2-year project has started in November 2023. The aim of this project is to elaborate an online training tool for commercial agents and to create a certification system that can be offered to agents around the world. Christian Stadlmann, who is the coordinator from the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria, gave an overview of the project, the current status quo and showed first results of the survey regarding “agents activities”.

Addressing the complexities of the contemporary economic landscape, Tobias Thomas, Director General of Statistics Austria, delivered a keynote speech on navigating global trade in times of multiple crises. His insights shed light on strategies for resilience and adaptation, empowering delegates with valuable perspectives for the road ahead.

The International Agent of the Year 2024 is Mr. Tommy Garnett, owner of Garnett Component Sales Inc. and member of MANA, USA. He was selected by the Executive Committee during its meeting in February 2024. The agency has 4 employees, represents 18 principals and is providing custom engineered electromechanical compononents. MANA President Charles Cohon received the trophy on behalf of Mr Garnett.

Next year the Annual Meeting will take place from 29th to 31st May 2024 in Tallin, Estonia hosted by the IUCAB Member Association in Finland (FFTAF).

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