All Posts By

Connie Leung

New Research: Human Connections Key to Growing Business Results

By | 2020

Study by Asia Pacific Incentives and Meetings Event (AIME) reveals face-to-face meetings the most effective way to conduct business.  The meetings and incentives event has unveiled a new report that shows 93 percent of business event delegates find human interaction and connections important across business events, with 48 percent declaring them to be critical.

The new study, conducted by Talk2 Media & Events in the lead-up to AIME 2020, surveyed over 200 buyers and exhibitors from across the Asia Pacific region (87 percent) and wider world (13 percent) – looking at industry challenges and the most valued attributes.

The study revealed that the biggest barriers to business when attending an industry trade show were lack of quality buyers and exhibitors (33 percent), followed by insufficient networking opportunities (24 percent), poorly organised appointments and meetings (20 percent), lack of educational opportunities (13 percent) and poor timing of the industry event (10 percent).

The study also found that over 60 percent of buyers and exhibitors continue to find face-to-face connections the most effective way to conduct business, followed by email (32 percent) and phone call (4 percent).

Interestingly, when asked about the rise of digital in the industry, the two biggest concerns lay in losing touch with human relationships (48 percent), followed by online communities replacing physical communities (26 percent).

Matt Pearce, chief executive officer of Talk2 Media & Events said, “This industry report provides real insight into what makes delegates tick – and is another way we’re continuing to listen to the community.

At AIME 2020, expect to be challenged both professionally and personally. We have sharpened our focus on creating more meaningful and human moments, with greater opportunities to drive positive business results.”

It was also revealed that the Asia Pacific region was critical (34 percent) to driving business growth, with 42 percent stating that the region had significant influence and only 16 percent stating it had partial influence.

When it came to the best time to place business, 37 per cent of buyers and exhibitors stated the first quarter (Januart to March) was most important, followed by 23 per cent for the third quarter (July to September), 25 per cent for the second (April to June) and 15 per cent for the fourth (October to December).

AIME is scheduled to run in Melbourne February 17 to 19 February.

Visit for final registrations.


AAA 2020 – Asia’s Largest Amusement and Attraction Show

By | 2020

Attracting trade visitors from more than 50 countries, the show is set to be held from August 4 to 6 at the China Import and Export Fair Complex in Guangzhou, China.

To date entertainment industry professionals from United States, United Kingdom, Russia, Japan, Korea, Dubai, Turkey, India, Singapore, Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia among other countries are participating in the AAA 2020.

This year’s show will also have support from exhibitors worldwide with Chinese exhibitors like UNIS, Wahlap, Golden Dragon, G-Look, Golden Horse, Letian, Wangming, Prodigy, and brands like Sacoa (Argentina), Semnox (India), Embed (Australia), Wibit Sports (Germany), Zone Laser Tag & Hologate (Germany), Dragonautics (Singapore), Delta Strike (New Zealand) and F2 Systems Inc (Korea).

Live Activities during AAA 2020 show includes 2020 Asia Theme Park Development Forum, Advanced Workshop on Indoor Parks Operation and 2020 Asia Culture & Tourism Development Conference

In terms of exhibition scope delegates and visitors can expect: Games and Devices ranging from arcade and video, midway and skill, redemption prizes, participatory play equipment and displays; Theme Parks and Attractions of rides, architecture and design, photographic solution, people-moving equipment, security equipment, theatrical equipment and supplies and admission equipment; Water technology: with water-related equipment and supplies, water park design and consultancy; Children Amusement from playgrounds, trampoline, inflatables and kiddie rides; and Hi-Tech Equipment such as VR&AR, simulation, animatronics, snow and ice systems, laser tag and special effects.

Last year which was the 15th AAA show broke the record reaching 90,679 visits with 1,100 exhibitors showcasing their latest products and services – covering 120,000 square metres of exhibiting area.

For more information email:


Business Events Sarawak to Elevate Power of Business Events in Malaysia with PCMA

By | 2020

Business Events Sarawak (BESarawak) by Sarawak Convention Bureau has undertaken a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with PCMA, to develop a partnership that provides education, business development opportunities and increases awareness of the transformative power of business events.

The MOU is effective through December 31, 2022 which was signed last year at the Convening Leaders, PCMA’s signature annual event, in San Francisco’s Moscone Center.

Sherrif Karamat, CAE, PCMA president and chief executive officer said: “This agreement with Business Events Sarawak is completely aligned with PCMA’s vision and growth, as both organizations share the same goal — to demonstrate how business events transform societies, businesses and communities.”

The MOU calls for business events training and education to help showcase Sarawak’s unique value proposition to international associations and corporate markets in addition to developing the local meetings industry.

“Sarawak has already begun its quest to position business events as economic and community game-changers in the region through the Legacy Impact Programme” said The Honorable Datuk Haji Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Sarawak and Minister of Youth and Sports, Sarawak. “The program is focused on four pillars of legacies which are Advancing the Field, Community Benefits, Economic Outcome and Public Policy; driven by 27 drivers.”

BESarawak, Malaysia’s pioneer business events bureau, hosted a distinct gathering of business events strategists, industry leaders and government officials from Asia Pacific at the Convening Leaders last year to network with some of the world’s most prominent figures in the industry and discuss current growth strategies and disruptors.

PCMA and CEMA Announce a Strategic Alliance to Support, Educate and Grow Audiences

By | 2020

The agreement, which starts on January 1, 2020, calls for collaboration and cross promotion through educational initiatives to help increase brand presence and membership. Financial terms however have not been disclosed.

“PCMA has a commitment to bringing its members access to leading edge education and content that helps them deliver economic and social transformation through business events,” said Sherrif Karamat, CAE, PCMA’s president and chief executive officer.

He added, “This strategic alliance with CEMA allows us to deliver more resources to our members while expanding our audience so we can continue to demonstrate how business events transform global economies and societies.”

The strategic agreement calls for CEMA to co-develop education at each of PCMA’s four signature events: Convening Leaders, EduCon, European Influencers Summit and Asia Pacific Annual Conference.

While PCMA, will deliver education at the annual CEMA Summit and during CEMA Study Tours. In addition, both organisations will collaborate on webinars and other services to deliver greater value to each other’s membership.

“CEMA and PCMA share a vision for the advancement of event marketing as a vital element in the marketing stack, and each brand offers unique and complementary qualities and services to help event professionals learn and grow,” said CEMA president and chief executive officer, Kimberley Gishler.

PCMA has also strategic agreements with AIME (Asia Pacific Incentives Meetings Events), Abu Dhabi and Sarawak, Malaysia, IAPCO, COCAL and a joint venture with Destinations International for the annual Destination Showcase event.


Nara Prefectural Convention Center to Open Spring of 2020

By | 2020

The prefecture has over 1000-years of history and is the birthplace of Japanese culture Nara, offers a unique convention environment within the vicinity of three World Heritage sites, close enough for visitors to explore. Now, major developments of meeting facilities are underway for visitors to do business in the city.

Come spring of 2020, the highly-anticipated Nara Prefectural Convention Center is set to open its door to the world and expected to increase the range of conferences to be held in the city.

Located 90 minutes away from Kansai International Airport, the opening of this new center will allow industry players to host larger conferences and events, seating 2,000 delegates.

In adjacent to the center will be the JW Marriott Hotel Nara scheduled to open the same year, marking the first JW brand hotel in Japan.

A member of the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) who joined in 2019, Nara Prefectural Government is determined to strengthen the profile of Nara as a MICE destination.

Since the UNWTO Regional Support Office for Asia and the Pacific (RSOAP) is now based in Nara city, Nara looks forward to enhancing the framework for cooperation with UNWTO particularly in the field of culinary.

Future planning also involves more collaboration with Nara Agriculture and Food International College (NAFIC). Nara was selected by Japan Tourism Agency in 2019 as Japan’s bidding city for UNWTO World Forum on gastronomy Tourism 2022.

Agoda Research Reveals Travel Trend Expectations for the 2020s

By | 2020

Key trends take away: Technology advances to simplify travel; more conscious eco travel choices; and Kyoto tops destination wish list.

Single apps for all travel needs, passport free travel, and mobile app check-in are the top three new travel norms expected by travellers in the next decade, according to new research by Agoda, the world’s fastest growing digital travel platform.

People expect a log more from their travel experience in the next decade with continued advancement of technology, revolutionary travel apps and better connectivity. Specifically, Southeast Asians half of all respondents in Indonesia (56 percent), Singapore (54 percent), Malaysia (53 percent), Philippines (48 percent) and Thailand (48 percent) considering this the norm in the next decade. This compares to only a third of people in the United Kingdom and the United States (33 percent).

Meanwhile, Singapore (50 percent), Vietnam (47 percent), Philippines (45 percent), China (44 percent) and Australia (41 percent) are the top five origins most likely to see a future with passport-free travel.  In the United Kingdom and United States, they are less expectant of this advancement with only one in five expecting it, to be the norm within the next decade.

Technology has already made such a positive impact on how and where people travel as innovative technologies, like those developed at Agoda, give travellers instant access to millions of hotels and home properties around the world with real time pricing and availability.

“It is a technology golden age for travelers, as technology is developed to simplify the way anyone, anywhere can search, book and pay for flights, hotels or holiday accommodation. The 2000s was defined by the mouse and the computer, putting online travel booking just a click away.  The 2010s, was defined by the smart phone and app, and put a travel agent in the pocket of every phone owner, and the 2020s will be defined by the power of data and Machine Learning (AI). This will enable companies like Agoda to provide personalized, more relevant recommendations to make booking travel even easier,” explains Timothy Hughes, Vice President of Corporate Development at Agoda.

He continued: “Asian travelers, in particular, are enthused by, and expectant of, technology developments that enhance and simplify their travel experience.  Asian based companies are now leading the world in technology adoption and development to achieve this. I expect to see Asia press ahead with that lead in the 2020s – especially in areas such as video and augmented reality, improved mobile services with more chat and voice solutions, and payments to help bring the “unbanked online”.”

Globally, people want to increase travel, but also to make eco-friendlier travel choices

Universally, people want to increase the amount of travel they undertake in the 2020s.  Exploring more of their own country is cited by 40 percent of respondents globally, while international travel more often is anticipated at 35 percent.

What is also interesting according to the research, in the context of global narratives on climate sustainability is the trend that more than a quarter want to make more eco-friendly travel choices in the next decade.  Travellers from Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia are most keen to make eco- friendlier choices perhaps more aware than others with the recent closure of Maya Bay in Thailand, and the Boracay rehabilitation program in Philippines, thus travellers want to do their bit even when on holiday.

Travellers in the 35 to 44 and 55+ age groups, are most likely to want to explore their own countries and territories more (40 percent and 42 percent respectively), with those from China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia,  Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, United States and Vietnam choosing domestic destinations within their top three wish list destinations for the coming decade.

Meanwhile Korean and Japanese travellers see themselves taking more solo trips in the next decade. Taiwanese and Indonesians would prefer taking a sabbatical or gap year.

 Kyoto scoops number one spot as the world’s most desired destination to visit in the 2020s

Asia dominates the global travel wish lists destinations for the next decade, as travelers from both Asia and the West showcase a growing curiosity for Asian treasures like Kyoto (Japan) famed for its Shinto shrine.  Kyoto is an eclectic blend of culture, food and history, followed by Bangkok, (Thailand) and Bali, (Indonesia).

Travellers in Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam and Malaysia want to cross off their own capital cities from their travel lists. Meanwhile, South Korea, the United Kingdom and Australian travellers do not choose a domestic destination on their wish lists for travel in the next decade.

American and British travellers alike are most excited about visiting New York in the coming decade. New York is also a top three choice for travellers from Australia, Japan and South Korea. Both Malaysian and Indonesian travellers would like to visit Makkah by 2030.


ITB India All Set to Debut in a Grand Style in 2020

By | 2019

The inaugural ITB India is on track to take place from April 14 to 17 at the Bombay Exhibition Centre in Mumbai and exhibitors from around the world have confirmed their participation together with, leading minds of the global tourism industry, will share their knowledge at the ITB India Conference.

In its first year it will be organised by the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce and supported by Messe Berlin (Singapore) Pte Ltd.

The three-day business-to-business travel trade show and convention will focus on the Indian travel market including MICE, corporate, and leisure travel sectors. Exhibitors from every sector of the industry, including travel agencies and operators, national tourism organisations, business travel and MICE, travel technology, accommodation, and transport companies are all expected to attend.

ITB India will complete the trio of ITB Berlin, ITB Asia and ITB China, making it a quartet and strengthening the global ITB brand.

Oeganisers of ITB India are convinced that India’s outbound market will continue to grow and that ITB India will establish itself as the leading travel trade event for the Indian market.

For more information on ITB India 2020, visit


Meet the Global MICE Market at ACE of M.I.C.E. Exhibition

By | 2019

A three-day long program organised by the Turkish Airlines will take place from January 22 to 24, 2020 at Istanbul Congress Center in Istanbul, Turkey.

What you can expect from the show:

Buyers and Visitors from Turkey to Europe, Central Asia and Arabian Peninsula

For three days, more than 15,000 professional visitors are expected to attend the fair. Five hundred national buyers and 230 international incentive companies, PCOs, DMCs and corporate buyers will participate with the support of Turkish Airlines as the main sponsor of the show. Professionals world wide attending the show can conduct B2B meetings as part of the Hosted Buyer program with the exhibiting companies of the show.

How to Design, Plan and Manage Large Scale Productions

Production Talks will cover this theme held on January 22 and 23 in the Istanbul Congress Center, Uskudar Hall. The conference will gather production leaders of organiations from Olympic Games, Eurovision to Broadway Musicals.

While speakers bring the latest technologies and creativity in their projects, and insights about the production sector, as well as share their vision on how the industry will be shaped in the coming years.

AMEzing Party

On 22 January 2020, the first day of the exhibition, 1,500 MICE professionals from 41 countries will meet at Klein, one of the most famous night club in Istanbul for a party.

The Roadmap of Making Istanbul as Number one Destination for MICE

High level professionals of the Turkish MICE industry will discuss the roadmap of ensuring Istanbul reach its  potential as MICE destination in five separate sessions. The summit will be held by the moderation of Volkan Ataman as the president of Tourism Media Group as moderator during the summit with a gathering  the presidents of agencies, general managers of hotels and industry professionals.

A special session will host directors of London and Barcelona Convention Bureaus and American Express to deliver their personal success story before the audience.

For more information visit

AIME Awarded Best Trade Show at EEAA’s Annual Awards for Excellence

By | 2019

The award is for the Best Trade Show over 10,000 square metres of 2019 at the Exhibition & Event Association of Australasia’s (EEAA) annual Awards for Excellence held in Melbourne.

EEAA Awards for Excellence celebrate the achievement of outstanding shows, venues, suppliers, teams and individuals, and their hard work, creative curation and strategic planning that goes into each and every aspect of an industry event.

Talk2 Media & Events the event’s organiser, was challenged with re-launching AIME earlier this year with a new vision and bespoke offering; reigniting the passion and inspiration the business events industry was craving. The team implemented a new rigorous vetting process for Hosted Buyers.  At the same time introduced a cost-effective stand known as the Embassy Suites for exhibitors. This is to give delegates opportunity to maximise their returns on their investment.

“AIME has always had such a strong heritage and legacy in the business events world – we are thrilled to be acknowledged for driving it forward into its next phase. 2019 was all about showcasing to the industry that AIME was a refreshed format, and now the team at Talk2 can’t wait to show what 2020 will bring,” says Matt Pearce, chief executive officer of Talk2 Media & Events.

AIME will be held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from February 17 to 19, 2020.

For more details on AIME 2020 visit  

To follow AIME’s journey on social media visit Facebook , Twitter , Instagram and LinkedIn .

IBTM Announces Partnership with SACEOS’ SMF for IBTM Asia Pacific

By | 2019

IBTM part of Reed Travel Exhibitions announced that it has entered a letter of agreement to partner the renowned Asia-Pacific MICE industry business conference SMF (Singapore MICE Forum) with its newest Business Event IBTM Asia Pacific. This SMF and IBTM Asia Pacific initiative comes at the back of the recent agreement between Singapore Tourism Board and IBTM Asia Pacific signed at the opening day of IBTM World in Barcelona.

In partnership with SACEOS (Singapore Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers), the national trade association for meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibitions and events in Singapore (SMF2020)  will take place over 1.5 days at the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre from April 6, followed by IBTM Asia Pacific on April 7 and 8, 2020.

SMF is SACEOS’ flagship industry business event. Over the years, SMF has grown to be the choice platform for the regional MICE industry to gain new insights from luminaries in both our core and adjacent industries; exchange views and share experiences on how we can enhance our business. SMF will bring together a group of 500 over event professionals for 1.5 days of focussed discussions on how event design as well as digital and community engagement are becoming cornerstones of business success.

Expert speakers will share and exchange views on proven transformative ideas and how the industry can make choices. SMF2020 will bring together possibilities for organisations to adopt easily and promises to be a dynamic and inspiring experience like none other.

The Forum will be structured around five key themes: innovation; technology; design; sustainability and event trends and will include a combination of dynamic talks, campfire sessions and case studies from thought leaders within and outside of the industry, to bring discussions to life and provide tangible outtakes and learning for participants.

Nick Pilbeam, divisional director ofReed Travel Exhibitions, commented: “We know from our extensive research prior to launching IBTM Asia Pacific, that there’s a real appetite for education in the Asia Pacific region and we’re delighted that we’re going to be delivering on that through our partnership with SACEOS. SMF 2020 will provide an inspiring and educational kick-off to our inaugural event and I’m looking forward to announcing more details in due course.”

As the national trade association for business events, one of SACEOS’ objectives is to provide a platform to develop a digitally-ready and future-ready MICE industry. The agenda of SMF is one of SACEOS’ key initiatives to encourage conversations and showcase of the Asia Pacific MICE industry and is a platform to catalyse MICE stakeholders to be wired for the future.

“SACEOS aims to inspire our industry by taking the lead to upend itself, the bold step to disrupt, and forge partnerships to create a refreshed future. Through this partnership with one of the world’s largest organisers, Reed Exhibitions, we can pool our strengths together with a longer term goal for SMF and IBTM Asia Pacific to lead and define the MICE industry in this region,” said Aloysius Arlando, SACEOS president.

IBTM Asia Pacific will bring together a high calibre group of international, APAC regional and local meeting planners and exhibitors for two days of pre-scheduled one-to-one business meetings, education and networking. The event will be under-pinned by IBTM’s sophisticated, industry-leading Hosted Buyer programme which creates personalised appointment diaries for Hosted Buyers and exhibitors to ensure that delegates only meet people with whom there’s a very good chance of doing business.

For more information or to register interest visit: