Monthly Archives

May 2021

Art Fairs and Auction Returns to Hong Kong – Demonstrating Physical Events are Back due to Demand

By | 2021

In Hong Kong art lovers, luxury goods and antique collectors, and connoisseurs flocked to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre over a period of 10 days from May 19, to attend three prestigious art events: the Art Basel Hong Kong 2021; Art Central; and Christie’s Hong Spring Auctions 2021.

This is the first time, that the events were held over the same period which were cancelled last year because of the pandemic.

International exhibitors and buyers were still not able to attend physically due to travel restrictions. International galleries however, were represented and local art lovers and collectors came out to support the events who were thrilled to finally meet face-to-face.

“We have a lot of clients who want to purchase our artworks. This is the best time to catch up with the clients to show our works,” said Yiping Deng, gallery assistant of Avenue Des Arts Contemporary Art Gallery.

While Kelvin Yang, managing director, Galerie du Monde, pointed out that the essence of physical shows is that online display could not replace the experience of physically appreciating the artwork, and to feel its volume, colour and structure.

The managing director of Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Management, Monica Lee-Müller is confident in the progressive recovery of Hong Kong’s exhibition industry as the local pandemic situation eases off.

Melbourne Convention Bureau Welcomes Long-Term Investment in Business Events

By | 2021

The state government of Victoria has announced that it will commit to invest AUD 42,913 million over a period of four years to support the Melbourne Convention Bureau and Business Events Victoria to acquire business events for the state.

“This commitment recognises the essential role business events play in the Victorian visitor economy, and their contribution to innovation, job creation, trade and investment opportunities, for the benefit of the whole community,” said Melbourne Convention Bureau’s executive officer, Julia Swanson.

She added the business events sector has been one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and these measures not only support the business events sector now, they also ensure sustainability and growth of the sector for the future.

Despite the pandemic, MCB’s work in international markets has continued to secure high yield events for the city out to 2028.

Currently Melbourne Convention Bureau is managing AUD 547 million worth of bids that have the potential, to contribute 254,000 room nights for the hotel and accommodation sector.

South American M.I.C.E. Alliance Reactivation Survey ‘Towards the New Meetings Industry’

By | 2021

Trends showed in the survey, will help the meetings industry of countries in Latin-America, Inter-America, Ibero-America and Pan-America navigate through the recovery phase.

In the  survey conducted by the South American M.I.C.E Alliance showed: a medium term recovery of the meetings industry with 60 percent of associations interviewed, plan to organise at least three events, during the next five years; and a short term recovery in the corporate sector.

Results of the survey indicated that In-person events continue to be an option for associations. High season projection for meetings remains between the months of August and November for the Latin-American region.

Post covid era will mark a difference in the way associations select destination for their events. Preference will be based on such criteria as bio safety protocols, country’s entry requirements, prices and cancellation policies.

Services that will be more required by associations for the organisation of their events are in order of hotels, virtual platforms, convention centres and venues, audiovisual equipment and transportation.

While in the corporate sector, a more rapid recovery represented mainly in incentive trips, even in the short-term of the second semester of 2021 and 2022. Two thirds of the respondents have already received requests and have sent proposals for these periods.

In regards with the selection of destination, the key factors are totally similar to those presented in the associations market: implementation of bio security protocols; country´s entry requirements; vaccination plan; and costs.

The survey also highlighted that the return of in-person events showed an opportunity for the hybrid component, as a way for associations to meet regular number of attendees, or even, increase it. In the second semester of 2021 in-person events presented a growing trend  that will, continue to rise in 2022.

Saudi International Halal Expo Tapping into the Fast Growing Global Halal Market

By | 2021

The global market for Halal products is estimated to be about USD1.3 trillion, and the Halal market itself is said to be valued at USD6 billion annually. Saudi International Halal Expo, which is set to take place from November 29 to December 1 this year at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center, will feature over 200 companies locally and internationally on Halal products, and is expected to welcome visitors from 35 countries worldwide.

1st Arabia Tradeshows & Conferences organiser of the Saudi International Halal Expo, aims through the exhibition to create an ideal platform for  brands and organisations who manufacture Halal products and services, to connect with new buyers, suppliers and industry experts, and also as a  meeting point to bring together businesses in the same industry under one roof.

The event at the same time, intends to focus on developing learning opportunities to keep the Halal market in line with the latest trends and certification protocols.

On the overall, the Halal industry has expanded beyond the food sector to include pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, health products, medical devices, logistics, packaging, branding, finance, lifestyle, fashion and print and electronic media as well as, the service sector of  travel, tourism and hospitality.

SITE Forges Partnership with Hilton

By | 2021

Society of Incentive Travel, the global voice of the incentive travel industry has entered into a strategic partnership with Hilton, the global hospitality company. Through the partnership, Hilton will play an active role in the SITE community as well as, participating in global events and integrated marketing efforts of SITE.

The hospitality company will also host SITE Classic which is slated to be held from September 8 to 11 this year.

“SITE Classic is SITE Foundation’s flagship fundraiser, generating hundreds of thousands of dollars in support of our research, education and advocacy programs, on behalf of the incentive travel industry, “said Terry Manion, president of SITE Foundation.

At the same time, the strategic partnership provides Hilton with the opportunity to engage with SITE members through live and on-line events and various communication platforms, including

“Hilton is excited to grow our partnership with SITE and continue our mission of listening to and expanding our audiences and offerings in innovative ways to meet the evolving industry landscape,” said Vito Curalli, Hilton’s executive director, international sales & industry relations.






Expo 2020 Dubai has Five Months to Go

By | 2021

The Expo will be one of the first mega-events to take place since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and shall run from October 1, 2021 until March 2022.

It is expected to welcome more than 200 participants, including nations, multilateral organisations, academic institutions and businesses. Also for the first time in the 170-year history of World Expos, each participating country will have its own pavilion of a dedicated space, where it can showcase its culture and progress to the world.

At the same time, the Expo has been awarded the highest rating by CEEQUAL for eight of its infrastructure projects in terms of engineering, landscaping and public spaces. CEEQUAL is internationally recognised for its sustainability assessment on civil engineering with rating and certification for best practices in infrastructure projects.

Rating range from a pass at 30 percent to excellent at 75 percent accessed across a range of sustainability issues including land use, ecology, transport, resilience and pollution.

Expo 2020 is the first project in the Middle East to receive an ‘Excellent’ CEEQUAL’ rating for connecting all three of its Thematic Districts as a meeting place in a shaded microclimate which is unlike anywhere in Dubai – Al Wasl Plaza exceeded the award’s highest threshold, with a 91.6 per cent score.

While the trellis and steelwork of the 130-metre by 67.5-metre Al Wasl dome, which encircles the plaza creates the largest 360-degree projection surface in the world, scored a high of 93.6 per cent.

Recent cultural highlight of the Expo is the installation of a three-dimension replica of Michelangelo’s world-famous David sculpture at the centre of the Italy Pavilion. A painstaking work by artists which included 40 hours of digital scanning of the original 16th-century marble artwork in Florence; the creation of a three-dimensional digital model with a

resolution of 146 thousandths of a millimetre; a production by one of the world’s largest three-dimensional  printers with finishing touches painstakingly done by hand.


New Survey of European Convention Bureaus Shows Post Pandemic Optimism – Despite Cuts in Staff and Funding

By | 2021

A survey of 134 convention bureaus in 33 European countries by Dr Rob Davidson of MICE Knowledge, showed that one in four of these bureaus, have had, reductions in staff levels.  While one in three, have suffered cuts in their public sector funding since the beginning of the pandemic.

Out of which 75 percent of convention bureaus depending on financial support from their partners or members have had, reductions in funding from those sources. Regardless of this, a clear majority of three in four of the convention bureaus are optimistic, or very optimistic about their future, according to Dr Davidson’s report: The Impacts of the Pandemic on Convention Bureaus in Europe.

Responses to the survey show that many convention bureaus, have suspended one or more of their marketing activities such as bidding and advertising while others have switched over to digitalised forms from virtual fam trips and digital awards ceremonies for ambassadors, to participation in online exhibitions.

Many have used the past year to focus on making improvements to their services, resulting, for example, in more effective websites, bid books, and use of the social media. Various European convention bureaus have also, increased their education and training activities, improving their own skills and knowledge as well as those of their stakeholders.

In terms of the convention bureaus’ predictions for the future: there is widespread expectation that the digitalisation of meetings will continue into the post-pandemic world; there will be more focus on local and national markets; health, hygiene and safety of destinations will be paramount; sustainability, wellness and the social legacy of meetings will become more relevant; and in-person meetings will be generally smaller and shorter, but will have to offer participants more genuine value.

This survey says Dr Davidson indicates that European convention bureaus are working hard to support their destinations by innovating and adapting to the immense challenges now facing them, including continuing uncertainty about the duration of the pandemic. It provides evidence that when the recovery comes, the bureaus will be ready and willing to play their part in restoring prosperity, travel and animation in their destinations.

MICE Knowledge is a London-based consultancy specialising in research, education and training for the international meetings industry.  The 48-page report, ‘The Impacts of the Pandemic on Convention Bureaus in Europe’ is available free from here: