The most obvious first: GAMS is a sponsor of the event. This is of course done primarily for marketing reasons. As a sponsor, you can have a booth at the conference and show your presence. But in fact, we have the booth not only for marketing reasons. A booth is also an excellent meeting place. Not only people who are looking for more information about GAMS come here. People often come to us and tell us about their experiences with GAMS, positive as well as negative. Usually, requests for possible new features are expressed, which sometimes leads to ideas for new functionalities in our tools. Or questions are asked, which we can then answer with, so far for them unknown or upcoming features. Of course, we also inform about the latest developments. Next to GAMS, several other software companies report about what is going on in their R&D.
In any case, we gain valuable insights how our tool is used, where difficulties in comprehension may exist, and what else we could work on. A quote from Bill Gates fits here: “We all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” Conferences are also a perfect place for networking. Make new contacts, maintain existing ones. Sometimes there are opportunities for potential internships (and more).