Gaming gets even bigger in Cologne GDC 2009

Hang on to your hats folks, as the ‘Showdown in Cologne’ is headed your way this summer.  If the GDC (Game Developers Conference) wasn’t already decorated with enough pixels to make your eyeballs fall right out of your head – this year seeks to outdo even the best of the best!

Think Services (a division of United Business Media) will be presenting this coming years’ GDC in Cologne, Germany in conjunction with gamescom, the hottest game related ticket in Europe when it comes to consumers, publishers, and trade folks.  Global Games Media, an event management firm specializing in marketing and business development for the international interactive entertainment industry, will now be working with Think Services.

GGM CEO Frank Sliwka, formerly Leipziger Messe (home of the 2008 GDC) international and national advisor and conference director will be on board with Think Services as VP of European Business Development and Event Director, GDC Europe.  Silwka brings years of game industry conference and event management experience to the table and will lead the GDC Europe this coming August 17-29, 2009 in Cologne Germany.

“We are thrilled to present GDC Europe during gamescom,” Kathy Schoback, Executive Vice President, Global Events, Think Services, said. “A world class game developer event belongs at the premier European game industry event. With the support of Koelnmesse, BIU (the German Trade Association of Interactive Entertainment Software), and the City of Cologne, Europe’s most significant games gathering will definitely be a great success, and we couldn’t be more excited to have Frank Sliwka bring his deep experience to helping deliver GDC Europe.”

“We are pleased to welcome the European development community to GDC Europe during gamescom,” noted Oliver P. Kuhrt, Executive Vice President of Koelnmesse GmbH. “The team in charge of GDC Europe, Think Services and Frank Sliwka, are professionals who are renowned for organizing internationally respected developer events and who have deep industry experience, strong networking connections, and know how.”

After having attended last year’s GDC on Leipzig I can honestly say, this is THE games event in Europe, and to have Silwka on board, as well as presenting together with gamescon is enough to put this one right outta the park.  From hundreds of displays and test-drives to great sit downs, dinners, and wild afterhours parties (sponsored by Nokia – did I ever say thanks for the vodka?)  with developers, publishers, and industry peeps, the European GDC is an outstanding conference not to be missed.  Slapping gamescon on top of all this is like the pat of butter on those freshly cooked flapjacks on a cold January morning!

Details about this coming Augusts’ games smorgasbord in Köln are still sparse at the moment, but keep your radar tuned to gdceurope.com for updates.  Given the scale of this event and the already involved participants, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a surprise of two heading our way in the coming months.

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