Reed Exhibitions (RX) Chairman Mike Rusbridge will retire at the end of 2015, the company announced today.
Rusbridge joined RX as CEO of Europe in 1988. He became president of Europe and Asia in 1994 and was appointed chairman and CEO in 1996. During his tenure, RX has grown from a $400 million company to a $1.5 billion company that organizes 500 events in 43 countries, across 43 industry sectors with more than 7 million participants.
"Mike's achievement at Reed Exhibitions has been outstanding," said Erik Engstrom, CEO of RX parent company RELX Group. "Over the [last] two decades he has led the company and built the world's largest exhibitions business, delivering consistent growth over 20 years. I wish him well for the future."
Rusbridge has spearheaded more than 150 acquisitions, including the 1990 acquisition of MIDEM in France and the acquisition of Miller Freeman in 2000, which made RX the world's largest exhibition organizer.
"I find the events industry as exciting and stimulating today as I first found it 36 years ago," Rusbridge said. "Reed Exhibitions' achievements have been driven by a great management team and a very talented group of people. I am very proud of what we have created and leave the company in the extremely capable hands of the CEO, Chet Burchett, who has worked for RX for the past 11 years in the Americas. There is strong continuity of management and we are now realizing significant advantage from behaving as one company worldwide. RX has a very exciting future as we develop a digitally-enabled data-driven business, creating powerful business relationships for our customers."
Rusbridge will continue as chairman until December 2015.