news
the convention industry
Paris back as number one
in the city rankings for international congresses.
Africa Meetings
Africa Rising
in the ICCA statistic 2016.
business Intelligence
Saudi Arabia to launch into MICE sector
worldwide by exhibiting at IMEX in Frankfurt.
New position
Aoife Delaney
new Director of Marketing and Sales at DMC Network.
Redefining meetings
Sarawak goes tribal
to boost business.
Hotel world
Asias ultimate destination,
Signiel Seoul Hotel opens in the worlds new landmark.
Business Intelligence
Ottawa Tourism
sees large business events bookings up 220% in Canada’s 150th year.
meetings creates events, events creates meetings
Swedish Exhibition and Congress Centre
in Gothenburg speeds up plans to extend facilities.
Aviation Industry
Swedish Aviation Tax to Cost 7,500 Jobs,
Conflicts with Global Carbon Agreement.
NEW
Successful trials lead IMEX in Frankfurt
to fully-fledged roll out of Zenvoy networking service.
RSS
rss_icon
Links
Ottawa Tourism sees large business events bookings up 220% in Canada’s 150th year

Ottawa Tourism has seen a sharp increase in large-scale business events (with over 500 delegates) choosing the Canadian capital for their congresses in 2017, the year in which Canada celebrates its 150th anniversary of confederation. In January this year, 45 large-scale events had booked Ottawa for 2017 so far, an increase of over 220% in the last two years*.

The increase in Ottawa’s popularity for meetings follows significant investment in the destination and, in particular, the development of the city’s purpose-built convention centre, Shaw Centre, which is celebrating its sixth year in 2017. Over the last few years, billions of dollars have been invested in infrastructure and facilities in the city, including a $863m renovation of Parliament Hill’s West Block, extensions to Ottawa’s Light Rail Transit (LRT) and a major investment of $725m in redeveloping Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International airport.

Michael Crockatt, President and CEO of Ottawa Tourism, comments: “We have been steadily building on our strong reputation for hosting outstanding large-scale international congresses in Ottawa and we are excited about this continued growth. Ottawa is firmly on the map when it comes to large events, whether association or corporate, and we have had the privilege of working with some amazing events over the last few years who have enjoyed extremely productive and popular events in our city.

“As we are now in Canada’s 150th year of confederation, the development is only getting bigger and better, with a celebratory year ahead that will benefit our meetings offer significantly in terms of a rich programme of events and investment in facilities. We know that 2017 is a great year for events in Ottawa, and the numbers are already reinforcing that premise.”

Nina Kressler, President and CEO of Shaw Centre, adds: “Shaw Centre has played a pivotal role in accommodating many of the large-scale events that have been attracted to our great city. Since we opened in 2011, our business events portfolio has grown tremendously and we are proud to be a part of such an amazing destination at this historic and exciting time.

The investment in our city and facilities continues, which will be of significant benefit to the many business events that choose Ottawa.”

In 2016, 31 large-scale business events were held in Ottawa, with corporate events representing approximately 15% of the total. International events continue to show the biggest increase year on year. Association events held in Ottawa in 2016 include One Young World, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and the World University Service Canada International Forum.

In 2017, Canada celebrates its 150th anniversary of confederation with a vast array of events, celebrations and investment planned across the country. In Ottawa, a rich programme of activities is under way throughout the year, including Ignite 150, a series of 17 epic stunts and gatherings throughout the capital including: a yoga session on a barge floating down a local waterway accompanied by a live orchestra; a movie on a downtown terrace rooftop; and Canada’s Table, an outdoor dining experience featuring all-Canadian dishes served by the country’s top chefs to 1,000 guests, with Parliament Hill’s Sound and Light Show as a backdrop.

The 150th anniversary celebrations also include a series of legacy projects for Ottawa, such as: the new Global Centre for Pluralism; a brand new Canada Science and Technology Museum which is set to open in November 2017; a new, permanent Arctic Gallery for the Canadian Museum of Nature; and the new Canadian History Hall at the Canadian Museum of History.

*The calculation of 220% increase is based on the number of large-scale events booked for 2017, ie 45, compared with the total number of events held throughout the whole of 2015, ie 14.

About Ottawa Tourism

A non-profit organization, Ottawa Tourism provides destination development and marketing in cooperation with members and partners to attract visitors, tours and conventions to Ottawa and Canada’s capital region. It offers the complete capital experience, tells the story of Canada, and gets people talking. As the capital of a G7 country, and a high-technology and educational hub, Ottawa offers a deep pool of experts from which meeting planners can draw for their events. Its compact, walkable downtown and easily accessible, award-winning airport means smooth transportation of delegates. Ottawa particularly excels in the number and variety of its off-site venues; from national museums highlighting subjects like nature, aviation, art and history to venues that embrace the landscape of all four distinct seasons. This region of 1.3 million people—where over a third of the population speaks both English and French—punches above its weight in terms of memorable experiences, with robust local live music, culinary and craft beer scenes that complement the national focus of the capital.

www.ottawatourism.ca

About Shaw Centre

The spectacular new Shaw Centre (formerly Ottawa Convention Centre) staged its grand opening April 13 2011, welcoming the world to a stunning new landmark and exceptional new meeting place in the heart of the Capital. Overlooking the Rideau Canal – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – Parliament Hill and downtown Ottawa, the Centre features a sweeping glass façade encasing four floors of state-of-the-art meeting space, including the Canada Hall, which can accommodate up to 6,000 delegates. The 200,000 square foot Centre takes Ottawa to a whole new level in the meetings and conventions industry, enabling the Capital to host large, city-wide events and multiple simultaneous functions. Delegates can step outside and be just steps away from recreational paths and the ByWard Market shopping and restaurant district—not to mention 6,000 downtown hotel rooms, all within easy walking distance. The facility is directly linked to the 180-store CF Rideau Centre, the 495-room Westin Ottawa, and offers ample indoor parking. The Shaw Centre sets new standards for environmental design and sustainable practices, serving delegates and guests with advanced technology.

www.shaw-centre.com

Swedish Exhibition and Congress Centre in Gothenburg speeds up plans to extend facilities

Due to a growing need for capacity and strong international demand, the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre is bringing forward plans to further expand its facilities with new, flexible meeting areas. An additional storey will be built on top of the existing hall area to create an extra 14,000 square metres of space. The new storey will include an auditorium.

“We have enormous need for increased capacity,” says Carin Kindbom, President and CEO, Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre. “Our national exhibition and meeting business is booming, and our international business has also exploded since we upgraded our facilities two years ago, our biggest investment ever.”

As part of this SEK 1.2 billion investment, a third tower was added to the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre’s Gothia Towers hotel, making it one of Europe’s ten largest hotels with a total of 1,200 rooms. This has generated a strong increase in demand, for instance from global companies eager to book meeting facilities, accommodation and restaurants under a single roof.

“We need to expand our flexible exhibition and meeting space to meet the market’s demands and remain internationally competitive,” explains Carin. “With the additional storey, we will be first in Scandinavia to offer an exhibition centre on two levels.

Building the new hall and meeting facilities on a third storey will allow the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre to implement its strategy of moving certain activities upstairs, thus freeing up space at ground level for activities that promote interaction with the surrounding city and its social life.

“For instance, shops and other facilities might be installed on ground level,” says Carin. “Meanwhile, we are working on extending our entrances, partly in preparation for the planned construction work around Korsvägen.”

In December 2015, the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre applied for a development permit to expand the facility over a 15-year period, a project that includes two new towers, a new arcade, larger entrances and an additional storey. The expansion will be implemented earlier than planned and in a different order, to more quickly meet growing demand for flexible meeting and event facilities.

There are also future plans to construct two new towers which, among other things, will contain more hotel rooms. The aim is to increase the hotel capacity to 2,000 rooms to meet rising demand for large international events.

“We aim to continue growing, making Gothenburg more attractive and helping to promote local trade and industry,” says Carin. “Our vision is to become Europe’s most attractive forum by offering the best overall experience, and this requires investment and boldness. We have no other option if we want to compete in the global market.”

The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre is a financially independent foundation with no owners or investors.

“All investments are made on the Foundation’s merits and all surplus is reinvested in the business,” comments Roger Holtback, the Foundation’s Chairman of the Board. “Thanks to our strong financial development in recent years, we have the resources to continue developing and improving the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre’s facilities to accommodate our growing exhibition and meeting business.”

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------About The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre

The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group, of which Gothia Towers is a part, is owned by the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Foundation and has the mission of promoting industry. The Foundation is financially independent so has no owners or investors. All investments are made on the Foundation’s merits and all surplus is reinvested in the business. The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre’s vision is to become Europe’s most attractive forum by offering the best overall experience.

Swedish Aviation Tax to Cost 7,500 Jobs, Conflicts with Global Carbon Agreement

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) responded to an Inquiry on the proposed Swedish aviation passenger tax, warning that the tax would cost 7,500 jobs and negatively impact Sweden’s economic competitiveness. IATA also emphasized the Inquiry Committee’s own acknowledgement that the climate change impact of the tax would be negligible.

Aviation delivers major economic benefits to Sweden, generating 4.2% of GDP and supporting 240,000 jobs. Analysis by IATA of the committee’s “green tax” proposals of up to SEK430 per ticket, shows that Swedish GDP would be SEK5 billion lower as a result of the impact of the tax. This will mean around one million fewer passengers and 7,500 fewer jobs in the aviation industry and the wider economy. The competitive position of the Swedish economy would decline, dropping from 22nd to 78th in the World Economic Forum (WEF) Cost Competitiveness Index, worse than Finland, Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands.

“This tax will be disastrous for the Swedish economy. Those promoting the tax are essentially suggesting that 7,500 Swedish workers are worth sacrificing to save 48 hours-worth of carbon emissions on Sweden’s roads. We urge Swedish businesses and the Swedish people to persuade the government to reject this tax on connectivity and are eager to support them in this important task. Sweden should be working with European and world partners to make a success of existing aviation climate policies, not imposing ineffective measures that cripple the economy while having almost no impact on the environment,” said Rafael Schvartzman, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Europe.

Aviation is committed to mitigating its environmental impact and was the first global business sector to set tough carbon targets, including carbon-neutral growth from 2020 and cutting 2005 emissions in half by 2050. October last year saw a breakthrough with the agreement of the 191 states at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) for a global carbon offsetting and reduction scheme for international aviation (CORSIA).

“Last year, ICAO’s member States, including Sweden, agreed that CO2 emissions are best addressed through a single global market-based measure and recognized that CORSIA should be the market-based measure for international aviation. The implementation of national or regional taxes on top of CORSIA is not only redundant, it also goes against the ICAO agreement and risks alienating States from implementing CORSIA,” said Schvartzman.

Flights within Sweden and to European States are subject to the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme and airlines pay emissions and noise charges at Swedish airports. All flights between Sweden and EU Member States and over 90% of all commercial flights between Sweden and non-EU countries will be covered by CORSIA.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

• IATA (International Air Transport Association) represents some 265 airlines comprising 83% of global air traffic.

Successful trials lead IMEX in Frankfurt to fully-fledged roll out of Zenvoy networking service

Continuing its drive to enable buyers and exhibitors to make the most of networking opportunities, IMEX in Frankfurt has partnered with networking specialists Zenvoy to make it easier for attendees to meet even more like-minded people at the show.

The introduction of this new service at IMEX in Frankfurt follows a pilot test a year ago and its successful introduction and roll-out at IMEX America in October 2016.

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group said; “We’re always interested in partnerships and collaborations with innovators who can bring new concepts to market - everyone from education designers to event tech developers. When there’s a clear benefit to an important audience, in this case meetings and events planners, then we like to conduct a small, manageable trial and, if the results are sound and the feedback’s good, then we tend to move quickly to a formal roll-out and launch. Zenvoy’s a great example of that process.

“Zenvoy creates networking opportunities not only at the show but long afterwards. After facilitating 3,000 plus introductions before and during IMEX America, over 10,000 introductions have now been made for IMEX America buyers and we have an IMEX America community with more than 1,300 active users.

”Helping our clients make powerful connections with the right people is now built into our mission. New partners with fresh new ideas, such as Zenvoy, help us keep that target in plain sight.”

Devan Chauhan, Assistant Manager - MICE & Leisure, at Globe Forex & Travels Ltd was a Hosted Buyer at IMEX America 2016. He says, "In this era of digitization, Zenvoy is an awesome platform for digital contact exchange and networking, allowing users like me to contact professionals of the same field. I am really happy with it and would like to continue to take its services in future."

Zenvoy achieves results for IMEX by inviting pre-registered hosted buyers and visitor buyers to opt-in and complete a confidential profile. It then uses intelligent data profiling software to analyse and match each person with others with similar business profiles including job title, nature of business and number of years in the industry. Like-minded individuals are then invited to connect online or arrange to meet face-to-face at the show during lunch breaks or at the end of the day.

Leo Gestetner, Co-Founder and CEO of Zenvoy commented; “The service and the data are entirely private, meaning attendees are assured of complete discretion and the introductions are specific to IMEX in Frankfurt. There is no downloading, swiping, searching, hunting or spamming. Zenvoy turns IMEX from a 4-day event to months of networking!”

Business Booms at ibtm arabia 2017

ibtm arabia 2017 once again was hailed a great success by exhibitors and Hosted Buyers. Over 2,100 pre-planned meetings happened during two days of the event, which took place from 7-9 February at Jumeirah Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi. 82 exhibitors from 15 countries were joined by 120 Hosted Buyers from 32 countries for the three-day long event.

Luma Khatib, Jordan Tourism Board, commented: “This is the first time that Jordan Tourism Board has taken part in ibtm arabia using the ‘pod’ structure. We found the format was of great benefit for us and, along with the diversity of buyers from across the globe and from a broad spectrum of different types of business, ensured we had very successful meetings and made many excellent business connections.

“The networking events also were very useful; the relationships generated throughout the functions allowed participants to get to know to each other in an informal environment which resulted in greater personal interaction.’’

Hosted Buyers were equally complimentary, with Adam Wing, from Bibby Financial Services saying: “ibtm arabia was a fantastically immersive event that combined business meetings with a city experience and generated some great connections who I will definitely work with in the future.”

The event utilises a ‘pod’ format with one-to-one meetings taking place during days two and three of the event. ibtm arabia 2017 featured a total of nine networking events and also offered the opportunity for attendees to experience some of the best attractions Abu Dhabi has to offer.

The first day, Discovery Day, was designed to allow attendees to get to know each other in a fun and informal environment ahead of formal business meetings. With an itinerary designed by partner Hala Abu Dhabi, guests enjoyed excursions including to the Falcon Hospital and Yas Island Attractions, lunch at some of the newest hotel restaurants in Abu Dhabi, followed by a Desert Safari and dinner in a desert camp.

Shinu Pillai, Event Director, ibtm arabia, commented: “We’re delighted to have received such positive feedback immediately following ibtm arabia. Ultimately, our goal is to create the very best possible backdrop for doing business in this region, and to have such high quality brands and Hosted Buyers attending means it’s important that the event really delivers.

“Once again this year the calibre of our exhibitors meant that we had extremely high demand from Hosted Buyers to attend the event. Of the total number of Hosted Buyers who applied, our rigorous evaluation process led to 40% of applicants qualifying to attend, all of whom were selected with ROI of both parties in mind, ensuring their budgets and requirements were closely aligned with our exhibitor needs. We had a 98% satisfaction rating last year and I’m very hopeful that we’ll at least meet, if not exceed that this year.”

For more information, visit http://www.ibtmarabia.com/en. ibtm arabia is run with the support of Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau and Etihad Airways. Poken provided Hosted Buyer compliance technology at the event and Neumann & Müller were technical partners.

 

KOKS wins the Faroe Islands’ first Michelin star

Since opening its doors in 2011, restaurant KOKS has won the hearts of food lovers in the Faroe Islands and beyond.

Now six years on, it has won the ultimate foodie accolade – its first Michelin star, propelling it onto the world stage of top dining experiences. KOKS is the first restaurant in the Faroe Islands, which has a population of 50,000, to receive a Michelin star.

Run by 26-year-old Faroese chef Poul Andrias Ziska, KOKS focuses on innovative traditional Faroese food, giving its guests the chance to taste the Faroes and its seasons through local produce.

“At KOKS, our aim is to create the ultimate dining experience. An experience strongly influenced by our deep-rooted Faroese traditions and the remarkable local produce found at our doorstep. This is our strength, and often our job is simply to let the extraordinary produce speak for itself,” says Poul Andrias Ziska.

The young avant-gardes at KOKS use Faroese produce, both coarse and fine, ancient and modern, whilst ensuring that the gathering and consumption is sustainable. Rather than blazing new culinary trails, every effort is put into exploring the ancient Faroese practices of drying, fermenting, salting and smoking.

KOKS’ menu is determined by the various seasons and what they have to offer, transforming ancient culinary tradition into modern delicacies. Simple and pure, fresh and traditional.