Here's Why IME South Will Be a Game Changer

IME will take place June 14-16 at the Charlotte Convention Center.

MDDI Staff

June 8, 2022

6 Min Read
Image courtesy of Formatoriginal / Alamy Stock Photo

IME South is just a few short days away – taking place June 14-16th at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, N.C. MD+DI caught up with Steve Everly Group Event Director, MD&M South to discuss what the event means for the southeast.

MD+DI: Thanks for speaking with us; I know that you’re very busy these days. IME South is upon us in just a few days. Talk about the genesis of this event. How did IME South come about?

Steve: The manufacturing industry is undergoing immense disruption with the rapid adoption of advanced technologies and digitization, renewing investment in re-shoring manufacturing efforts to the U.S. And many OEMs across applications, particularly in the automotive, medical and pharmaceutical, and aerospace sectors, are investing in new factories and manufacturing plants in the Southeastern region of the U.S. Global and domestic manufacturers are relocating their production facilities to North Carolina and the surrounding states, turning the locale into a burgeoning manufacturing hub as the industry recovers from the pandemic and addresses workforce shortages and supply chain instability. 

Significant trends of note driving this boom include state and local governments incentivizing manufacturing and employment booming in the Southeast, further fueling increased manufacturing output in the region.

Such growth requires industry connection, new partner discovery, and peer-to-peer education to help companies and professionals overcome growing pains. We’re so excited to debut IME South, which comprises six renowned trade events ATX South, D&M South, MD&M South, Plastec South, Powder & Bulk Solids South, and SouthPack, to unite engineers, manufacturers, and suppliers and promote new technology discovery.

The all-new exhibition and conference is set to take place in Charlotte, North Carolina, at the Charlotte Convention Center from June 14 through 16 and will alternate with IME East in New York City, which has now transitioned to a biennial schedule.

MD+DI: What are some of the key trends or concerns in the Southeast region (in relation to medtech and biotech)? How are these concerns different from some of the other markets – such as Anaheim and Boston?

Steve: North Carolina, in particular, is the United States' fifth largest manufacturing economy contributing $107.1 billion to the state's GDP, according to a recent report from Governor Roy Cooper. 

MD&M South will serve as the Southeast’s most comprehensive medical design and manufacturing event, which will facilitate emerging medtech and biotech trends throughout the show. We’re seeing a proliferation of the medtech market in North Carolina and an intensified need for greater visibility to the latest technologies, similar to a few of our other events; however, this will be our first time facilitating face-to-face peer connection in the southeast region, which makes it unique.

While medtech venture capital in the Southeast is far from the levels seen in Silicon Valley or the New England territories in terms of dollars invested, medical device companies in the Southeast tend to be at early stages of development. Thus, there exists immense and not yet tapped opportunities for angel investors and innovation in this region in the medtech space – many of the MD&M South exhibitors are going to be companies to watch in the coming years.   

MD+DI: What has been the level of interest or engagement for IME South so far? Who are some of the key partners Informa is working with for this event?

Steve: We have seen fantastic engagement from past MD&M exhibitors who are keen on expanding into this key region to connect and build their customer base and manufacturers that call the Southeast their home.

Registered attending companies in the medtech space include Baxter Healthcare, Becton Dickinson, Boston Scientific, Cook Medical, Edwards LifeSciences, Smith & Nephew, Stryker, and more.

Among our key association partners include North Carolina Biotechnology Center, Southeast Life Sciences, Technical Associates of Charlotte, and more, who are all local to this region, thus helping amplify the event amongst buyers and professionals.

MD+DI: Let’s talk about the conference. What can we expect to see at IME South?

Steve: Given North Carolina has a very robust manufacturing economy in the medtech, aerospace, automotive, metal, forest products, logistics, and plastics sectors, the event’s educational programming will host subject matter experts across many disciplines. Our expertly curated conference spans keynote addresses, technical education, hands-on demos, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and much more.   

Across the six co-located event brands, the event will connect more than 4,000 buyers and upward of 350 suppliers spanning medtech, packaging, automation, plastics, design, and processing. The education on the show floor spans more than 30 topics ranging from 3D printing and AI to packaging and sustainability. Here’s a few must-attend sessions to look out for!

Keynote Panel: Everything Old is New Again – Reviving a Legacy Industry in the US

Speakers from: Nufabrx, Proreli, North Carolina State University, and Textile Technology Center

The global supply chain disruptions of the last two years are spurring major changes across the manufacturing sector. After decades of reshoring, legacy industries, such as textiles, are coming home and finding challenges that require category-defining innovation and significant, long-term investment by the private and public sectors. What is working today to restore legacy industries, and who is leading the charge? Our keynote panel will focus on the revitalization of textile manufacturing in the southeastern US, a sector seeing renewed and more complex demand from essential businesses like medical devices and pharmaceuticals—and over the last fifteen years, it has exported 80% of its workforce overseas. How is the industry evolving and what lessons have been learned that can be applied to your industry?

Panel: Speed to Market: Tactics for Accelerating Product Development Through to Commercialization
Speakers from: Access Vascular, Medical Murray, PAVmed Inc., Starfish Medical

The medical device market is changing rapidly and critically; speed to approval and commercial launch matters more than ever. In this session, we will share the tactics we use in product development programs to move faster. This panel will review tangible strategies for accelerating medical device product development, the tradeoffs during development from cost to program risk, how to ensure that product development decisions facilitate commercialization and will include case studies of rapidly accelerated programs. You’ll hear from industry experts about:

  • Guidance for planning medical device development programs (e.g., sequencing work the FDA expects in 510k filings)

  • Getting it right the first time and avoiding rework (e.g., right-sizing HF and clinical studies for important early-stage input)

  • How to tighten Alpha and Beta engineering development cycles and front-load work

  • Rooting product development in the anticipated demands of commercialization

MD+DI: Finally, what are you most excited about or are looking forward to from IME South?

Steve: Our team worked hard over the past few years to launch the event in Charlotte, and we could not be more excited to see the energy on the show floor next week. The manufacturing markets’ continued evolution and growth, combined with the medtech industry’s groundbreaking technological developments, create such a perfect opportunity to connect and learn – we’re proud to facilitate the much-needed conversation, education, and deal-making.

We hope to see you in Charlotte – registration is open and accessible here.  


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