PCMA Acquires Corporate Event Marketing Association

December 9, 2020

PCMA has acquired the Corporate Event Marketing Association, the premier community for event marketers, as a new, wholly-owned division.  

The deal between the two organizations was signed after CEMA members voted overwhelmingly in favor of the acquisition. According to PCMA officials, the move will propel both organizations into an exciting new chapter as businesses and organizations adjust to the evolving role of business events in an omnichannel world.

“CEMA has been a leader in the event marketing space for more than three decades,” said Sherrif Karamat, PCMA president and CEO. “As part of our ongoing commitment to delivering value to our members, so that they can emerge out of the pandemic prepared for a new reality, we continue to look for ways our industry can bring more creativity, content and learning from professionals in adjacent fields.

The merger comes one month prior to PCMA’s Convening Leaders, one of the industry’s most influential association-based events. The 2021 conference, coming Jan. 11-15, 2021, will be an omnichannel production, utilizing live, semi-live and recorded sessions. 

Thanks to this solidified partnership, both CEMA and PCMA members will soon be able to expect new professional development and networking programs, expertise and research, membership growth and long-term stability and organizational expansion. Both organizations will cross-pollinate peer-to-peer learning and idea exchange forums, as well as share educational and experiential learning content.

“We are now in an optimal position to pursue strategic growth and regional expansion, and create even better engagement and experiences for the membership of both associations,” Karen Cooper, CEMA chairwoman of the board.

PCMA’s Board Chairman Stuart Ruff-Lyon says as COVID-19 restructured nearly every industry and organization around the world, PCMA and CEMA are focused their attention and effort on delivering high-value, recovery-focused resources for their members. 

“Now, as the world moves forward into recovery, our partnership has evolved into a stronger offering to members of both organizations and the industry, as one,” Ruff-Lyon said.

Based in Sacramento, California, CEMA was founded more than 30 years ago with a vision to provide event marketers with the creative direction needed to drive innovation and growth for the world’s leading organizations. The association now has more than 800 members, with participation from leading global brands including Cisco, Salesforce and Oracle.

“We are thrilled to be joining the PCMA family and excited at the prospect of expanding and enhancing professional development, networking and growth opportunities for CEMA members,” said Kimberley Gishler, CEMA president and CEO. 


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Partner Voices

As event professionals and destinations adjust, adapt and evolve in these uncharted waters, it is imperative that substantial resources be put in place for all of the people responsible for planning and executing trade shows, expositions and conventions. An example is Mohegan Sun, which built an industry-leading, COVID-19 Resource Center with a combination of pictures from recently held successful events (the property reopened on May 1, 2020) along with several widely available and informative documents, such as an evolving operational framework: