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PATA Elects New Executive Board Members

By | 2022

The Pacific Asia Travel Association has endorsed Mr. Peter Semone as the chair of the association’s executive board during the 71st PATA Annual General Meeting held virtually on May 13.

PATA also elected six new members to its executive board.  They are: Mr. Benjamin Liao of the Forte Hotel Group, Chinese Taipei; Mr. Suman Pandey, Explore Himalaya Travel and Adventure, Nepal; Mr. Tunku Iskandar of Mitra Malaysia Sdn. Bhd, Malaysia; Mr. SanJeet, DDP Publications Private Ltd., India; Mr. Luzi Matzig of Asian Trails Ltd., Thailand; and Dr. Fanny Vong from Institute for Tourism Studies of Macao, China.

Top left to right: Peter Semone; Benjamin Liao; Suman Pandey; and Tunku Iskandar.
Below left to right: Luzi Matzig; Abdulla Mausoom; Noredah Othman; SanJeet; and Fanny Vong.

They will be joining current executive board members Dr. Abdulla Mausoom from the Ministry of Tourism, Maldives and Ms. Noredah Othman of Sabah Tourism Board, Malaysia.

While Mr. Benjamin Liao and Mr. Suman Pandey were elected as the new vice chairman and secretary cum treasurer.

Bangkok to Host ICCA Congress 2023 – Signaling Thailand’s Return as Contender for Large-Scale International MICE Event

By | 2022

Supported by Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau, the 2023 ICCA Congress, will coincide with Bangkok showcasing the first half of the city’s 20 year strategic development plan; that of transforming into the ‘Metropolitan City of Asia’.

It is also the year of economic revival for Thailand, as the country opens up to the world again stated by the president of TCEB, Mr. Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya.

Mr. Chiruit also pointed out that one segment of the congress programme which is particularly important for Thailand’s MICE professionals, is the ICCA Business Exchange.

The session where ICCA members share vital commercial information on the bidding process, selection criteria and budgets of their recent events, which can provide essential guidance to Thai MICE players in crafting winning bids.

TCEB will invite 20 local associations to attend ICCA’s Incredible Impacts Programme meeting where the spotlight, will be on how international conventions have helped bring positive change to societies around the world, leaving behind legacies for local communities and the next generation.

For Thailand, hosting the ICCA Congress 2023 will generate substantial economic returns, with business opportunities for the country’s MICE community.

More than 1,000 overseas and 200 Thai delegates are expected to attend the congress. It’s estimated the congress itself, will generate three million USD in revenue, and have other positive impacts such as: job creation; tax revenue; as well as added values to the Thailand economy.

This will be ICCA’s sixty second congress and Thailand has been a member of ICCA since 1974.

 

 

MITEC Appoints New Chief Executive Officer

By | 2022

Ms. Mala Dorasamy will head the Malaysia International Exhibition Centre. She  was previously the venue’s director of marketing and sales was made the acting chief executive officer in 2021.

The Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre is the country’s largest exhibition centre with over 45,000 square metres of gross exhibition and meeting space.  MITEC has played host to some of the world’s major events from the SEA Games in 2017 to Defence Services Asia Exhibition Conference 2018 to PowerGen Asia in 2019 among others.

Ms. Dorasamy’s appointment came at a time when MITEC reopens its facilities in conjunction with the resumption of the business events sector in the country.  According to the new chief executive officer, the facility looks forward to welcome conferences and exhibitions back.

Ms. Mala Dorasamy is Chief Executive Officer of MITEC.

Originally from South Africa, Ms. Dorasamy has worked for the Durban International Convention Centre as its director of marketing, sales and events.  She has over 31 years experience in the business event industry and specialises in opening of new convention centres.  Her expertise lies in sales, marketing business development, sales, risk management and implementation and management of ISO standard and Halal certification.

She was also nominated as the Top 40 Women in MICE in Africa for 2015, and was honoured with the South African Association of Conference Industry Fellowship Award.

 

Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands Earmark USD1 Billion for Reinvestment Plans

By | 2022

The key goal of the programme is, to raise the hospitality experience in the luxury travel segment, whilst offering new luxury lifestyle amenities for high-value travellers, which is predicted to lead in the recovery of tourism worldwide.

The USD one billion reinvestment programme has already commenced at Marina Bay Sands, and in a news release by the property, it states that the reinvestment reaffirms Las Vegas Sands’ confidence in Singapore, and its ongoing commitment to the country’s tourism industry.

It involves extensive upgrading of all rooms and suites in Towers 1 and 2 of the hotel. Renovations will be completed in phases over this year and 2023.

Marina Bay Sands will introduce signature experiences across the 55th floor of all three hotel towers, including a revamped executive club lounge, premium fine dining, and health and wellness offerings.

The reinvestment plans and project programme is the biggest since the integrated resort’s opening in 2010; in addition to the multibillion-dollar expansion announced in April 2019 that included: a state-of-the-art entertainment arena; an ultra-luxury hotel tower; and new modern MICE spaces.

Announcement of the reinvestment project comes as Marina Bay Sands enters its second decade of operations following its 10th anniversary in 2020.

Since opening in 2010 at a development cost of USD5.6 billion, Marina Bay Sands has provided, significant benefits to Singapore’s tourism sector, with over 380 million visitors to the property, and has helped to attract more than 1,000 new MICE events into the country.

AIME 2022 Sees a Growth of AUD120 Million in Business Events

By | 2022

Known as the leading trade convention for the meetings and events industry in the Asia Pacific region, AIME has released new insights on the success of this year’s show and reported, a 20 percent increase from 2020.

New industry research on the show, has revealed that 95 per cent of exhibitors cited AIME 2022, as an important event for their business, with over 94 per cent stating they were impressed with their return on investment. Further to this, 95 per cent of delegates agree AIME is the place to make important business connections, namely due to its atmosphere rated at 83 percent and strong reputation 81 percent.

“It’s been two years since we’ve hosted an event of AIME’s calibre in the city, and with the support of the Victorian state government, this event was the first real opportunity to show the world that Melbourne is back in action, and ready for business,”  said Melbourne Convention Bureau’s chief executive officer Ms. Julia Swanson.

Next year, AIME will be celebrating its 30 years.  According to the organiser 98 percent of exhibitors, have expressed interest in attending AIME 2023 which, will be held at Meblourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from February 13 to 15.  For more information, please visit aime.com.au

Marina Bay Sands Receives Events Industry Council Sustainable Event Standards for Venues Platinum Certification

By | 2022

The property is said to be the highest rated venue outside the United States, and the achievement comes after the integrated resort became the first venue to be awarded Gold in 2020

Among the sustainable efforts that contributed to the decision to certify the venue’s platinum rating are: a waste management plan that resulted in the property achieving a recycling rate of around 27 per cent in 2021 through treated food waste and e-waste;  the investments in energy saving initiatives, which have helped reduce energy consumption by 14.6 per cent in 2021 as compared to the 2019 baseline; by converting 98.5 per cent of its fleet of vehicles at the convention centre to electric; and a culture of sustainability amongst employees who collectively clocked over 60,000 sustainable actions.

Since the integrated resort opened in 2010, sustainability continues to underpin the property’s operations guided by its global sustainability strategy. Sands ECO360 which incorporates best practices, cutting-edge technologies, and methods to reduce overall environmental impact.

Sands Expo and Convention Centre for example, is Singapore’s only carbon-neutral MICE venue, a result of its energy efficiency measures and investment in local renewable energy certificates and carbon offsets. Event organisers can conduct meetings and conferences at the centre that are 100 per cent carbon neutral, which is at no additional cost.

 

Ready.Set.Melbourne – A New Interactive Video Planning Tool by Melbourne Convention Bureau

By | 2022

Described as being between, a video show reel, and a choose-your-own- adventure book, this video tool integrates by engaging clickable options for BE professionals, to access both information on the capabilities of Melbourne  city,  and Victoria state, as business event destinations.

The video provides viewers with in-depth local knowledge that will help to host, plan, and attend a conference, as well as information on corporate incentive programs in and around Melbourne.

Melbourne Convention Bureau’s chief executive Ms. Julia Swanson explained that viewers get to make their own choices. Ready.Set.Melbourne she mentioned, hands over control to the viewer where, they are in the driver’s seat and can make their own choices in personalising the experience themselves, as they advance through the content.

The convention bureau has widely used video content with Ready.Set.Melbourne has taken the next step in developing an interactive event planning journey from start to finish.

MCB is experimenting with new ways to foster engagement of its services at the same time create an offering, that isn’t found anywhere else, like when it first introduced the Melbourne virtual site visit, where, users can explore Melbourne’s business events offerings, via a 360-degree first person immersive virtual reality experience.

Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre Welcomes its First Conference

By | 2022

The inaugural conference was the New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga Looking Ahead Symposium and this, kick starts for the centre, a full roster of more than 100 events scheduled remainder of the year.

According to Te Pae Christchurch general manager Mr.Ross Steele, of the events planned at the centre for the rest of this year, more than 60 are conferences, including eight international events – combined will bring over 67,000 people into the central city, and generate an estimated of NZD 37.2 million in direct economic value.

Mr. Steele further added that: looking beyond the end of 2022 the centre, has a solid pipeline of business. In total through to October 2024,146 events are scheduled, which will bring close to 150,000 people into the city; and generate more than NZD 74 million in direct economic value. This includes 88 conferences out of which 23 of are international.

Scheduled events in 2022 of the centre include:

  • Harcourts National Convention, May
  • New Zealand Dance Awards, May
  • Christchurch Art Show 2022, June
  • MEETINGS 2022, June
  • Roofing Association of New Zealand Conference, June
  • Bookeepcon 2022, July
  • House of the Year Awards, July
  • Maia Health Foundation FEAST 2022, September
  • Archipro – Meet, Greet & Eat 2022, September
  • Armageddon Expo, December

Melbourne Welcomes International Incentive Groups

By | 2022

Melbourne Convention Bureau has secured six international incentive groups from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and New Zealand. This will be the first time, Melbourne and regional Victoria welcomes back incentive groups since Australia’s international borders closed in 2020.

This first influx of delegates sets the tone for a busy season this May with the 162 Southeast Asian and New Zealand delegates due to arrive, filling close to 1,661 room nights and; expected to inject more than AUD898,000 in economic contribution to Victoria’s economy

Across the five incentive groups arriving, delegates will visit an array of attractions in Melbourne and regional Victoria. The exciting line-up includes some of Victoria’s most popular regions, the Yarra Valley, Mornington Peninsula, Phillip Island Nature Park for the iconic Penguin Parade as well as, a trip to enjoy the splendour of Great Ocean Road.

“We’re thrilled to once again welcome back international corporate incentive groups both large and small to Melbourne. MCB works to boost hotel occupancy in the traditionally quiet shoulder periods with visitors staying mid-week,” said MCB’s chief executive Ms. Julia Swanson.

For Victorian regional tourism suppliers and local businesses, business events are a major driver of regional visitation; providing a substantial economic contribution enhancing local communities.

Pre-pandemic, Melbourne attracted on average just over 100 incentive groups with approximately 55,000 international delegates each year spending, on average AUD1,019-00 per day across accommodation, tourist attractions, local shops and cafes.

 

IACC’s 2022 Meeting Room of the Future Barometer Forecasts 2023 will be the First year to Surpass 2019 Business Events Revenue

By | 2022

The survey ran over a period of three weeks in March 2022 with 87 venue operators from three continents the Americas, Europe and Australia taking part in the research study.

Respondents globally reported that 2023 would be, the first year, to surpass 2019 meetings and business events revenue levels. Predictions however, differ slightly by country with projected revenues in Denmark, to surpass 2019 levels as early as 2022 while, the Americas had a slightly longer outlook with revenues not returning to prior the pandemic levels until 2024.

The study, which is financially supported by IACC’s partners Encore Global, Benchmark Hospitality, Flik Hospitality Group/Rapport and Aramark Conferencing, shows that in 2021, average meeting and business events revenue was 45 percent lower than 2019 levels but in 2022, this percentage is expected to shrink to just eight percent below 2019 levels.

Sustainability continues to be an emerging topic, with some improvements made since the 2021 report. The report shows that, in general, there is more of a focus on environmental and social responsibility at venues in Europe and Australia when compared with North American venues.

Forty six percent of respondents to this year’s survey reported that, they are receiving increased requests from clients to either state or provide social responsibility and environmental credentials.

There is one sustainable practice, where venues, have shown considerable improvement since 2020, and that is the ability to donate unused food to local community outreach programmes.

More than one-half of responding venues report this option compared with only 23 percent of venues in 2020, and North American venues reporting a greater likelihood of offering healthy food options and the ability to donate unused foods than other regions.

The study further supports the gradual return to meetings weighted towards more in-person interactions. In 2021, 30 percent of respondents reported that more than 90 percent of their live meetings and events also offered virtual access.

In 2022 this percentage has dropped to 19 percent. This is corroborated by IACC’s report, The Future of the Meeting Industry, from February 2022, which showed that the value of human interaction is ranked the highest of seven factors when considering attending an in-person meeting, above expanding your network, scheduling and cost of attending. Collaboration with colleagues is also highly ranked.

The study also predicts that shortages in talent will be alleviated over time with overall respondents, who do not anticipate that workforce shortages, will negatively impact their ability to meet client and attendee needs. As 2022 unfolds, 55 percent of respondents reported that their venue has or will return to full-staffing levels by the end of 2022.

According to IACC’s annual Meeting Room of the Future Barometer 2022, two-thirds of venues say they will recover to 2019 meeting revenue levels in 2022 or 2023, with Danish and Australian venues predicting the fastest recovery.