[OSGeo-Conf] Questions for FOSS4G 2017 bidders

Robert Cheetham cheetham at azavea.com
Fri Nov 6 15:01:44 PST 2015


Venkatesh,

Sorry for the slow response.  I sent an inquiry to the City of
Philadelphia's Commerce Dept to see if there was anything they could do on
the visa matter.  They got back to me, but it took a few days.

I have had to struggle with this issue myself for some conferences I've
attended in Asia and the Middle East, and I can empathize with the
challenges that it presents.

The short answer is that the best assistance we can offer on this front
will likely be through our PCO, the Eclipse Foundation.  As David outlined,
they have organized several international events in many different
countries and have needed to provide this formal invitation letters and
other support in the past, and we would benefit a great deal from this
logistical support.

Best regards,

Robert

------------------


On Sat, Oct 31, 2015 at 9:03 PM, Venkatesh Raghavan <venka.osgeo at gmail.com>
wrote:

> Dear All,
>
> Thanks to all the team for putting up great proposals
> for FOSS4G-2016.
>
> My question to each team is about whether they have some
> plan to ease the immigration formalities to enter the
> respective host countries. This is important especially
> for many participants from Asia. Apart from just a simple
> invitation letter, some kind of more official document
> to ensure that issues of visa is smooth and easy.
>
> Best
>
> Venka
>
> On 2015/10/31 6:09, Michael Terner wrote:
>
>> Dear Steven:
>> Thanks for the good questions, below is BLOC's response. Also, please note
>> that some of your questions are very difficult to answer definitively
>> given
>> that the conference is still at the proposal stage and things like
>> "sponsorship commitments" and "contract negotiation" really can't be
>> finalized until after award. Still we have done our best to share our
>> approach and some of the further financial details you seek. To your
>> questions:
>>
>>     - ‚Äč1.
>>     There appears to be a requirement to fill a block of hotel rooms over
>> 5
>>     nights. What are the consequences if you fail to fill these rooms
>>
>> Our proposal reflects a hotel block of 810 room nights spread over 5 days.
>> By reserving this block it will enable a significantly discounted room
>> rate
>> and a lower cost for the conference venue itself (the World Trade Center).
>> We are confident that the hotel block is reasonable and assuming 1,000
>> attendees, can be met by approximately 27% of people spending 3 nights in
>> the hotel. We have worked closely with our proposed PCO in conversations
>> with the hotel, and once our bid is secure, we will work to negotiate the
>> most favorable terms. Reasonable terms that we would seek include: having
>> the block not be measured day-by-day, but by the aggregate number of rooms
>> on all days; the minimal possible penalty clause. The current proposal we
>> have from the hotel does not state a penalty clause.
>>
>>     - 2. You mention that you will be seeking a financial guarantee from
>>     OSGeo
>>        - A. Can you advise the extent of the guarantee required
>>
>> We will work with OSGeo to identify a safe, suitable and affordable
>> guarantee. In general, we would be seeking the maximum that OSGeo is
>> comfortable with, particularly for the upfront financing. We have reviewed
>> the Bonn agreement and those funding/guarantee levels seem appropriate and
>> attractive.
>>
>>     - B. How will you mitigate any shortfall beyond the level of the
>>        guarantee
>>
>> We will work diligently to avoid any shortfall at all. We have a realistic
>> (and conservative) budget and attendance targets and the energy and
>> commitment to ensure our targets are met. We are confident that we will
>> achieve, at a minimum, break-even. Mitigation approaches include
>> downsizing
>> certain cost elements in advance of the conference (e.g., reducing
>> food-and-beverage to the minimum). And, as appropriate, we will also seek
>> commercial insurance options (e.g., for *force majeure*).
>>
>>     - C. Can you confirm that you have read the draft agreement prepared
>> for
>>        2016 and that you would be willing to enter into a similar
>> agreement
>>
>> Yes, we have studied the Bonn agreement letter
>> <
>> https://svn.osgeo.org/osgeo/foss4g/2016/financial_stuff/agreement_with_osgeo/Agreement-between-OSGeo-and-FOSSGISeV-2016-usd.pdf
>> >
>> and
>> find no problems with the terms. We would be willing to enter into a
>> similar agreement.
>>
>>     - 3. You mention workshop presenter compensation, can you provide
>>     details of this.
>>
>> Our plan is to provide free conference registration to workshop
>> instructors
>> which is consistent with our understanding of past conferences. Our
>> estimated revenues/budget reflects this level of "free registration".
>>
>>     - 4. Can you provide an estimate of the loss per delegate below your
>>     break-even of 700
>>
>> Just to clarify, our figure of 700 attendees is *not* our break-even
>> point.
>> We label it as "minimum viable", and you will notice at that level we
>> anticipate a profit of $39,834. We are also carrying a $27,000+
>> contingency
>> budget at that level. Thus, even assuming we use 100% of the contingency,
>> exhausting all of the anticipated profits using the "full registration
>> price" would mean that our break even is approximately 650 attendees. As
>> pointed out earlier in this thread, many costs are variable based on
>> attendance so there is no single "fixed" loss per delegate figure. Based
>> on
>> our current revenue/budget model the average "loss per delegate" figure
>> for
>> going from 700 attendees to 600 attendees - including expected, related
>> sponsorship/workshop revenue declines - would be approximately:
>> $920/delegate
>>
>>     - 5. Your sponsorship estimates are very ambitious, what proportion is
>>     committed or highly likely (i.e you have had informal discussions
>> with the
>>     sponsor budget holder)?
>>
>> Even as it is impossible to secure commitments to a conference that has
>> not
>> yet been awarded to us, we are extremely bullish on the sponsorship
>> prospects and believe that our goal is both aggressive and realistic. Our
>> budget model also accounts for lower expected sponsorship revenues for a
>> conference that is smaller than our 1,000 attendee target. We have studied
>> the sponsorship that was achieved for other FOSS4G conferences and are
>> encouraged by Seoul apparently cracking the $200,000 of sponsorship
>> threshold (based on the sponsor logos and sponsorship pricing on the
>> web-site). We will aim to surpass that by:
>>
>>     - Companies on our LOC have committed to sponsor, if Boston is
>> selected
>>     - Partner companies to LOC members, including CartoDB, have committed
>> to
>>     sponsoring if Boston is chosen
>>     - We will aggressively recruit all companies that have sponsored an
>>     international and/or north American FOSS4G over the past 5 years
>>     - We will aggressively pursue Boston and New England local firms who
>>     have not sponsored previously
>>     - We will aggressively pursue non-geospatial companies to sponsor
>> (e.g.,
>>     in the vein that Red Hat has sponsored previously) to grow the
>> sponsor base
>>     - Our PCO has many years of recruiting sponsors to geospatial shows.
>> In
>>     addition several corporate BLOC members are frequent conference
>> sponsors
>>     and are eager to directly engage in this process.
>>
>>
>>     - 6. Please detail the PCO fee structure
>>
>> As outlined in our proposal we have been working with an experienced,
>> locally based Professional Conference Organizer. She has been advising us
>> through the proposal process, but we do not yet maintain a formal,
>> contractual relationship which outlines a detailed fee structure. Rather,
>> our PCO fees are embedded under the "Conference Production" line item.
>> Based on conversations with with other host communities, including
>> Portland, and with our PCO partner we are using a $60,000 budget for
>> comprehensive PCO services.
>>
>>     - 7. What is the travel time between the two workshop venues?
>>
>> As per our proposal, the Tufts (Boston) and Harvard (Cambridge) workshop
>> venues
>> <
>> https://www.google.com/maps/dir/35+Kneeland+St,+Boston,+MA+02111/1737+Cambridge+St,+Cambridge,+MA+02138/@42.3602822,-71.1032159,14z/am=t/data=!4m14!4m13!1m5!1m1!1s0x89e37a777f38ae5f:0xadfcf4fcac1ad690!2m2!1d-71.0619556!2d42.3505209!1m5!1m1!1s0x89e377443ab51a21:0x1ef314b37d653654!2m2!1d-71.1132118!2d42.3756352!3e2
>> >
>> are
>> 3.5 miles and a short public transportation ride from one another and from
>> the conference hotel. Biking - through the Hubway bike sharing system - is
>> also possible. Transiting between venues by public transportation should
>> take approximately 30 minutes. The BLOC's goal is to program workshops so
>> that a need for someone to switch between sites on the same day is
>> minimized.
>>
>> Sincerely, MT & the BLOC
>>
>>
>> On Thu, Oct 29, 2015 at 3:36 PM, Steven Feldman <shfeldman at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>
>> Hi Boston, Ottawa and Philadelphia
>>>
>>> Thanks for your hard work in submitting proposals.
>>>
>>> No doubt you will receive questions from others on programming and other
>>> topics, my questions will focus primarily on financial matters.
>>>
>>> *Boston*
>>>
>>>     1. There appears to be a requirement to fill a block of hotel rooms
>>>     over 5 nights. What are the consequences if you fail to fill these
>>> rooms
>>>     2. You mention that you will be seeking a financial guarantee from
>>>     OSGeo
>>>        1. Can you advise the extent of the guarantee required
>>>        2. How will you mitigate any shortfall beyond the level of the
>>>        guarantee
>>>        3. Can you confirm that you have read the draft agreement prepared
>>>        for 2016 and that you would be willing to enter into a similar
>>> agreement
>>>     3. You mention workshop presenter compensation, can you provide
>>>     details of this.
>>>     4. Can you provide an estimate of the loss per delegate below your
>>>     break-even of 700
>>>     5. Your sponsorship estimates are very ambitious, what proportion is
>>>     committed or highly likely (i.e you have had informal discussions
>>> with the
>>>     sponsor budget holder)?
>>>     6. Please detail the PCO fee structure
>>>     7. What is the travel time between the two workshop venues?
>>>
>>>
>>> *Ottawa*
>>>
>>>     1. The financial element of your proposal (delegate rates,
>>>     sponsorship, qualifications to estimates) is very similar to that
>>> provided
>>>     by Philadelphia. Can you confirm whether these estimates have been
>>> prepared
>>>     by the LOC or by your PCO?
>>>     2. Your sponsorship estimates are ambitious, what proportion is
>>>     committed or highly likely (i.e you have had informal discussions
>>> with the
>>>     sponsor budget holder)?
>>>     3. Do you require a guarantee from OSGeo? If so please provide
>>> details.
>>>     4. What mix of delegate types (corporates, non-corporates, students
>>>     etc) is your income based upon?
>>>     5. Can you confirm that your plan is to return $75k to OSGeo if you
>>>     achieve 750 delegates
>>>     6. What is your break even level?
>>>     7. Can you provide an estimate of the loss per delegate below your
>>>     break-even level
>>>     8. Please detail the PCO fee structure
>>>
>>>
>>> *Philadelphia*
>>>
>>>     1. The financial element of your proposal (delegate rates,
>>>     sponsorship, qualifications to estimates) is very similar to that
>>> provided
>>>     by Ottawa. Can you confirm whether these estimates have been
>>> prepared by
>>>     the LOC or by your PCO?
>>>     2. Your sponsorship estimates are ambitious, what proportion is
>>>     committed or highly likely (i.e you have had informal discussions
>>> with the
>>>     sponsor budget holder)?
>>>     3. Do you require a guarantee from OSGeo? If so please provide
>>> details.
>>>     4. What mix of delegate types (corporates, non-corporates, students
>>>     etc) is your income based upon?
>>>     5. Can you confirm that your plan is to return $75k to OSGeo if you
>>>     achieve 750 delegates
>>>     6. What is your break even level?
>>>     7. Can you provide an estimate of the loss per delegate below your
>>>     break-even level
>>>     8. Please detail the PCO fee structure
>>>
>>>
>>> Look forward to hearing from you all
>>>
>>> Cheers
>>> ______
>>> Steven
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Conference_dev mailing list
>>> Conference_dev at lists.osgeo.org
>>> http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/conference_dev
>>>
>>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Conference_dev mailing list
>> Conference_dev at lists.osgeo.org
>> http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/conference_dev
>>
>>
> _______________________________________________
> Conference_dev mailing list
> Conference_dev at lists.osgeo.org
> http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/conference_dev
>
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/conference_dev/attachments/20151106/cf3443bd/attachment-0001.html>


More information about the Conference_dev mailing list