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Posted by portugalpress on October 11, 2017

Around 5,500 people visited BLiP Expo 2017 held last weekend at the Portimão Arena. “A resounding success” were the words used by Michael Reeve, CEO of event organisers afpop, to sum up the comments from exhibitors and visitors alike.

Thousands of residents, property owners and potential investors visited the exhibition to talk to businesses taking part, to obtain advice and information across a broad range of products and services.

Visitors included people from as far afield as Angola, Moscow and the United States, some of them interested in moving to Portugal.

The newly re-elected Portimão mayoress Isilda Gomes visited on Saturday morning and attended the launch of the new afpop initiative to raise funds to purchase portable defibrillators for the Bombeiros’ ambulances – one for each of the 17 commands in the Algarve.

With a target of €20,000 to be met, Michael Reeve was already able to present to Richard Marques, Commander of the Portimão Bombeiros, the first defibrillator. Over the weekend, more than €1,000 was donated by BLiP visitors, meaning that “Operation Shock”, as the initiative is called, is already more than 10% of the way to its target figure.

The mayoress congratulated afpop and the Bombeiros on this initiative and spoke warmly of the importance of BLiP EXPO to the whole region and in particular to Portimão.

The President of the Algarve Tourism Board, Desidério Silva, also attended the exhibition and took interest in the many exhibitors, including the Algarve Tourism Board’s own stand and added his congratulations and support.

Michael Reeve told us: “One of the challenges in organising such an event is how to keep it fresh and relevant each year. This year we have not only altered the layout and stand locations, but we were delighted to include the BNI (Business Network International) organisations. We were also able to organise a Business Breakfast for exhibitors on the Sunday morning, which was very well received and deemed successful by those who took part.

“BLiP is about promoting businesses, both foreign and Portuguese owned, to the general public, but we are also trying to move the focus to more cooperative working and the Business Breakfast was a good way to start that process.”

By the end of the exhibition on Sunday evening, several exhibitors had already expressed their intention to attend again in 2018.

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