ICMA Spring Conference 2016
Amsterdam 4-6 May

The conference will run for two-and-a-half days, from the optional Wednesday Boot Camp and Welcome Reception, to two full days packed with speakers, workshops and panels, intermingled with fantastic networking opportunities and an exciting social programme.

Wednesday 4 May 13:00 – 17:00

Optional Activity
Why not explore the city by foot, bike or canal boat? Amsterdam City Tours offers a whole host of options if you want to see some of the many highlights that Amsterdam has to offer. For more information visit their website here or call +31 299 411 111 to book in advance which is highly recommended.

12:00 – 13:00 Conference & Boot Camp Registration Desk Open
Stop by, say hello and pick up your name tag at our registration table.

12:30 – 13:00 Boot Camp Welcome Coffee Break

13:00 – 17:00 Boot Camp
Room: Matterhorn 3
The ICMA Spring Conference 2016 Boot Camp will be led by Raphael Bienz, CEO of BlueGlass with a focus on all things SEO. We will also ask attendees to come to the workshop with SEO / Social marketing challenges which they will the opportunity to discuss and work through in groups in an interactive way. This will provide attendees with practical takeaways to implement in their businesses.

17:00 – 18:00 Conference Registration Desk Open
Stop by, say hello and pick up your name tag at our registration table.

19:00 – 22:00 Welcome Reception – drinks and buffet at the Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre
Room: Atrium Foyer
All ICMA delegates are welcome to join us in the evening for drinks, canapés and networking in the Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre, for a warm welcome to the ICMA Amsterdam Conference. This is your chance to meet with everyone and start forming those all important connections and future relationships. We will also be celebrating ICMA’s 30 anniversary!

Thursday 5 May 08:45 – 17:00

08:00 – 08:30 Conference Registration Desk Open
Stop by, say hello and pick up your name tag at our registration table.

08:15 – 08:45 Welcome Coffee Break
Room: Atrium Foyer


Room: Matterhorn 1+2
08:45 – 09:00 Chairperson’s Welcome and Opening
Heinz M. Schwyter will be kicking off the conference by extending a warm ICMA welcome and introducing the planned conference schedule.

09:00 – 09:30 Today’s Marketplaces: How Silicon Valley Has Changed the Game
Tristan Pollock, Founder of Storefront, a marketplace for retail space that is backed by leading Silicon Valley investors, will discuss the trends, trials and tribulations of the modern day marketplace.

09:30 – 10:00 Marketplaces as Mobile Apps: What Does the Data Tells us About Successes and Challenges in the App Stores
Patrick Kane, Founder & CEO at Priori Data. What is the status quo in the global mobile app economy and how have classified marketplaces performed as mobile apps? This presentation will leverage performance data from over 3mm apps to identify the key market trends, companies, and apps which are succeeding on the Apple App Store and Google Play. How are traditional players performing, how do newcomers use the app stores to upset the status quo, and what to expect in 2016…this talk will package key data from Priori’s proprietary platform into powerful insights for the ICMA audience.

10:00 – 10:30 Financial State of the Leading Internet, Ad-tech & Classifieds Businesses
Richard Kramer, Founder & Managing Director of Arete Research, the leading independent tech investment research house. Richard will be sharing his views on the financial state of the leading Internet, ad-tech and classifieds businesses, diving into the increased importance of the major digital empires (walled gardens) and separate the Street’s perpetuated business from the harsh realities of the market.

10:30-11:00 Coffee Break

11:00-11:30 Scaling into numbers, volume and new opportunities
Adil Osmani, CEO of RUBRIKK NO AS.
Rubrikk classifieds has gone from focusing on one site in one country, to launching into full scaling mode across new markets rapidly. Given a certain size, computing capacity and share number of ads – what else can one do? Adil will share ideas on how to roll out big data initiatives.


Classified Presentations

11:30 – 11:40 Thoughts From a 25 Year Old
Kamilla Harritsø, Head of R&D at GulogGratis.dk
GulogGratis.dk turns 25 years in March and the good old days have been and the future is now. Onboarding is hard. User journeys are all over the devices. And we are owned by a newspaper. Kamilla will present some of the challenges they are currently facing and what their plan is to overcome them.

11:40 – 11:50 I Shouldn’t Be Alive
Felix Erken, Managing Director of Junk Mail Publishing Group.
Back by popular demand, Felix will explore the challenges faced by Junk Mail Media in the new competitive age of digital, battling garage hackers and big corporations, Ebay and Naspers alike. We’re still there, we’re still standing, we shouldn’t be, but we are and we’re doing rather nicely thank you very much.

11:50 – 12:00 The vertical markets banquet: `à la carte` or `all you can eat buffet`?
Cecil Hetherington, CEO of usedcarsNI.com.
Classifieds providers often develop additional services in vertical markets. Cecil will be sharing his experiences of offering a range of services to motor dealers in Northern Ireland with the aim of strengthening customer loyalty and driving growth.

12:00 – 12:10 Classifieds Are Database Business
Marja-Leena Tuomola, COO at Sanoma Digital Finland
Marja-Leena, one of ICMA’s previous Board of Directors, will be sharing her experience of how to leverage the classified data and database, and extract additional revenues from it.

12:10 – 12:20 Challenges in the regional market: Threats, amenities and our ideas for growth.
Claudia Nessler, Head of Classifieds at Russmedia Digital
Russmedia Digitals classified portals are market-leading in jobs, real estate and general classifieds in the western part of Austria. This presentation will provide a close look into the challenges we are facing in the regional market, as well as ways to remain successful despite national competitors moving ever closer, and lastly, our initiatives for further growth.

12:20 – 12:25 Brain Snack: The future of Classified Marketplaces – video.
Mauricio Morales, Co-founder & CPO of TheMotion will explore how to easily and automatically convert your Classified Marketplace content into video in this 5 minute session.

12:30 – 14:00 Lunch


Room: Matterhorn 1+2
14:00 – 14:15 Brain Snack Session: “What makes your users turn away. Hint: it is not all about the scams.​”
Jacob Sachs, Global Account Manager at besedo
Building on insights gained in our recent user survey you will learn about the content type that makes 73% of users claim they would not return to the site and hands on tips for improving your content right now to make your users happy and loyal. This presentation is for representatives of sites that are looking to improve beyond basic safe content.

Join our Sharing Best Practice session where you get the unique opportunity to sit down with your peers from around the world and learn from successes and failures. These are our highest rated sessions for good reason – great for networking but more importantly they give you the chance to challenge your thinking and learn from others experience.

During this 3 hour session you will get the opportunity to sit down at 3 different tables and participate in a lively 40 minute session where you can ask questions of your peers and share your experience good and bad.

For Sharing Best Practice in Amsterdam we will cover the following topics:

  • Marketing – from ppc to branding and everything in between
  • Mobile – apps, responsive, monetisation, notifications and more
  • Development – in-house, outsource, agile, waterfall, return on investment
  • Curation, Moderation and Security – added value or added costs
  • Monetisation – revenue models, self-service, sales approaches

15:00-15:30 Coffee Break

17:00 – 18:00 Members Meeting
Our Chairman Heinz M. Schwyter will present an update on the status of ICMA and discuss the current association projects. We will also share the 2015/2016 Budget and forecasts. We encourage all members to attend this meeting and be an active part of your association!

19:30 – 22:30 Group Dinner (departing hotel at 19:25 – meet in hotel lobby)
ICMA loves bringing their delegates to local venues so that they can sample the country’s culture and history. We are excited to reveal this event will take place in British celebrity chef – Jamie Oliver’s restaurant, Fifteen. Fifteen was established in an warehouse with great atmosphere, overlooking the River IJ. On the menu you will find local, sustainably produced ingredients of the highest quality. This event is sponsored by ICMA member Mitula Group who will be hosting this wonderful evening.

Friday 6 May 09:00 – 17:00

08:15 – 08:45 Welcome Coffee Break
Room: Atrium Foyer

Session 1 – Workshops

09:00 – 12:30 Business Leaders Forum
Room: Zürich 1
Rob Paterson, Director of Consulting at AIM Group LLC and Boris Metraux, Founder & CEO of Encuentra24.
The Business Leaders Forum will have two distinct sessions. The first will take a look at what’s happening in classified marketplaces across the globe from the major players to the new challengers, how technology is impacting classifieds and some thoughts on what’s next. This will be an interactive session led by Rob Paterson.

The second session will take a look at a specific challenge facing a classified business as they attempt to grow. Using the wisdom of the crowd we’ll examine different approaches to the issues faced and hopefully come up with a competition beating strategy.

09:00 – 12:30 Sales Managers Workshop
Room: Matterhorn 3
Marc Mandt, Entrepreneur in Residence at Tampa Bay WaVE and Founder of Adalia Media.
The Sales Mangers Workshop will be a fast paced and interactive session covering a number of topics related to sales management. During this session, topics ranging from recruiting and onboarding new employees, managing and developing existing teams, metrics (You can EXPECT what you INSPECT), leveraging technology such as CRM to drive sales, creating a winning culture and more. It will be an exciting and informative morning where you can share your experiences and learn from your colleagues.

09:00 – 12:30 Business Operations Forum: Free is more than advertising based, diving deeper into the revenue potential of Freemium
Room: Zürich 2
Peter Froberg, Consultant at Freemium.org.
Freemium is a business model where in you give away a core product for free and then generate revenue by selling premium products to a small percentage of free users. It has been used to great success by companies such as Skype, Dropbox and most smart phone apps.

As more classifieds businesses are either using free or facing competition from free alternatives, existing business can leverage freemium principles in their existing capabilities and organisation. In this workshop you will get an understanding of the freemium business model and how focussing on it could help to develop your business. Working on a strategical level you will gain insight into a concrete analytic framework and a method for developing and optimizing a freemium business model in existing companies.

(10:30 – 11:00 Coffee Break)

12:30 – 14:00 Lunch


Room: Matterhorn 1+2
14:00 – 14:15 Brain Snack Session: What can marketplaces and classifieds learn from each other?
Dan Benjamin, Co-Founder & Head of Business Development eRated.
Dan will led an exploration into the lessons learnt from working with marketplaces and classifieds for the past 3 years and predictions about the future of peer to peer transactions.

14:15 – 14:45 Fireside Chat
Rob Paterson will lead a 2 part fireside chat. Starting with Peter Froberg, Consultant at Freemium.org.

14:45 – 15:15 A story of David and Goliath – taking on the market leader
Rob Paterson will then lead the final fireside chat with Alastair Campbell, Founder of Carsnip.com. Alastair will be sharing his experience and why he took on such a challenge in the car classifieds space.

15:15 – 15:45 Coffee Break


Startup Stories

15:45 – 16:05 Transforming Cities into Universities – Lifelong Learning
Michel Visser, Founder of Konnektid.
Education and the job market are changing rapidly. Within the next ten years we’ll have about 20 jobs during our career. Our current education system is outdated, centralized around the institute and the curriculum. By sharing knowledge we can build a community for education and be owner of our own curriculum. Michel Visser will dive into the challenges of building hyper local marketplaces, community building and how he’s build a demand based marketplace for education.

16:05 – 16:25 Why we launched a mobile first marketplace (in the last area people would have thought: art)
Ethan James Appleby, Founder & CEO of VanGo. Before launching Vango we learned three things about why our target audience didn’t buy art: (1) they found it intimidating, (2) they wanted to ‘try it before they bought it’ and (3) they found pricing confusing. Ethan, talks about why (because of these reasons) he and his team decided to go mobile and how they used technology to build the fastest growing online marketplace for art.

16:25 – 16:45 Asset Sharing is your new business
Marle van Dessel, Communications Manager at FLOOW2 World’s Reset Button.
It’s 2016. We are all moving from a mindset of owning to one of using, and are starting to make more efficient use of what we already have. Not only in the consumer-to-consumer world is sharing hot and happening, but also in the business-to-business sector big advantages can be gained through the sharing of equipment, services, and skills and knowledge. How can the FLOOW2 online Sharing Marketplace help businesses in becoming more financially stable, sustainable, and social, and what are the challenges faced when implementing “asset sharing” into their daily business? Find out in this session.

16:45 – 17:00 Chairperson’s Official Conference Close
Heinz M. Schwyter will be giving the conference an official close.

19:30 – 00:30 Friday Night Out (departing hotel at 19:15, meet in hotel lobby)
The ICMA Spring Conference 2016 closing party will take place at People’s Place, a venue owned by Tommy Hilfiger in the heart of Amsterdam. This event will allow you to network in a casual, relaxed atmosphere while celebrating with new friends and contacts, drinking cocktails, eating local food and dancing to a great DJ! This always proves to be a very special evening and tickets costs an additional 115 EUR per person so please don’t forget to select this when registering. Ticket costs include venue entry, coat check, food and all drinks from 20:00 – 00:00.