Data Driven Destinations

Many of us attended the ICE London 2023 iGaming expo in February and learned that they’re looking to relocate. Clarion are currently in the consultation process to decide on their 2025 location. We thought it would be fun to let our ‘Optimum Locator Model’ (OLM) loose on the scenario. Our OLM was developed to identify the optimal location for setting up a new business entity, unit, or division. We recently used it ourselves to make a ‘data-driven destination’ decision for our outsourced Managed Services business, RokkerX. 

Using our Optimum Locator Model

To apply the OLM to the premise of where ICE 2025+ should be located a number of criteria were needed. We started off by identifying venues in Europe with comparable size/floorspace to the ExCeL. This process resulted in a longlist of 78 potential venue locations spread across 66 different cities and 21 countries.

To reduce this longlist, we filtered these venues using the following criteria:


EU Member State

We assumed the venue would need to be located within the EU to reduce tariff costs for major exhibitors. We understand that this has been one of the major issues with London being the host venue post-Brexit.

Data-Driven Destination


The potential host city had to have a metropolitan population > 750,000 to ensure sufficient infrastructure. Hosting an event with 35,000+ attendees requires availability of adequate accommodation, transport, restaurants etc.


The potential host venue had to be within 1-hour travel time from a major international airport.

This provided us with a shortlist of 14 venues/cities across 10 countries. This shortlist was then analysed and scored on a total of 17 variables. These included standard criteria that we’d normally use including; ease of travel, availability and cost of accommodation, and English proficiency. We also included a number of less serious “fun” factors, such as cheapest beer, best nightlife and best weather! We then assigned a 1-10 rating across each criteria to calculate a composite percentage score. For example 15% for ease of travel, 10% city size/infrastructure,and 5% beer costs!

The OLM’s Top 3 Optimal Locations for ICE 2025+

Using our independent data and this approach, our OLM determined the following top 3 optimal destinations for ICE 2025+:


  1. Gran Via, Barcelona
  2. Metropolitan Expo, Athens
  3. CityCube, Berlin

We’ll be really interested to see which destination Clarion ultimately decide on and see how it compares to our modelling analysis.

Need to Make a Data-driven Decision?

We’d love to discuss any data-driven destination decision you need to make for your business. Our Head of Research Dr Jack Garnham will be more than happy to explore the possibilities with you. Simply email him at

Thanks to Alex Pratt & the Clarion Gaming team for allowing us to use the ICE event to illustrate how the OLM works.

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