Gary Cardin, partner in charge of Drivers Jonas' Birmingham office, is making his first trip to MIPIM and shares his experience with The Birmingham Post...
Mipim is one of those key events in the year that generates an infectious buzz of activity around the property marketplace.
As Europe's largest and most successful property conference and exhibition, Mipim is a truly international affair with over 1,900 companies exhibiting and an even more impressive mix of 17,000 investors, end-users, local government authorities, developers, agents and lawyers from 70 countries descending on this international marketplace for four days of virtually uninterrupted activity.
When faced with the dilemma of being able to justify being away from the office for a few days in today's fast paced business world, it is vital to recognise the opportunity this event provides in bringing together such a concentration of property contacts.
Billions of pounds worth of investment is pouring into Birmingham, helping to transform the city's skyline and significantly upgrade its profile on the world stage.
This is reflected through the strong senior Birmingham City Council contingent attending this year, including the leader of the council, Mike Whitby, together with Clive Dutton who recently took up the post of head of planning and regeneration.
With many presentations and events planned, there have been general debates on some of the key issues facing Birmingham.
Developers responsible for some of the most significant schemes have been telling their story of why they chose Birmingham over any other destination - their messages have compounded Birmingham's promise that it offers much more than just Spaghetti Junction!
My decision to go this year was not only to represent Drivers Jonas, but to show my strong support and belief in Birmingham and its future.
How do you go about getting something out of it and where do you start?
I don't know why I troubled myself with these thoughts. There was a bombardment of emails, invitations and phone calls before I left.
The range of senior executives who are available to set up appointments was amazing - my diary is full, including a reception at Villa Constantinople and an event on a yacht in Cannes harbour!
I'm also meeting up with those people that I do see regularly in Birmingham and realised that this is typically what happens.
We see each other, but it's always on the way to or from a meeting or at an event each seated at the opposite ends of the room. This year Drivers Jonas has a DJ Caf> at Pavillion Croisette for clients and guests to drop by for coffee, breakfast or lunch.
As a delegate, I'm also visiting stands and exhibitions, hearing a number of keynote speeches on a variety of development issues, attending launch receptions as well as our own Drivers Jonas receptions and dinners.
Celebrating its 16th anniversary this year, the scale of what is on offer at Mipim is startling. It sounds glamorous and, while the beer and conversation may flow, Mipim has lived up to expectations.
Birmingham should be here and we need to work together to ensure that the city is represented in it best light.
As for me, I will be putting the date in the diary for next year and, in the meantime, I will be looking to build upon the contacts I have made.