How can a destination achieve its potential in the meetings market, return on investment of public funding in the meeting industry – these are, among others, the major topics discussed with the world leaders in the field of meeting industry at the seminar titled „What makes a meeting destination successful?“ held in Prague on 9th February, 2012, in Prague Marriott Hotel. Such type of event took place in Prague for the first time.
„We are really happy that, in a relatively short time, we managed to organize this unique event and to get such significant experts in the meeting industry in one place. Education in the field and information exchange with our foreign colleagues is a very important part of the development of any industry, and therefore we would like to focus more on this area,“ stated Director of the Prague Convention Bureau Lenka Žlebková.
This seminar was the first step which should help to open door to a deeper understanding of congress industry from the side of the representatives of public institutions in the Czech Republic and to raise awareness about this significant field of tourism among both the entities active in tourism and the general public.
„We are pleased to support the initiative of the Prague Convention Bureau to organize this seminar. The meeting industry, as one of the most significant sectors of tourism, is very important for economic development of a destination, not only in Prague, but throughout the Czech Republic,“ said General Manager of the Czech Convention Bureau Zdeněk Giormani.
“Secret of success is when a destination has a vision and a product to present, as well as resourced sales and marketing. Destinations that win define their goal, and all the stakeholders cooperate,” claimed Bruce Redor, Senior Associate at GainingEdge – international consultant company operating in the meeting industry. Director of the Copenhagen Convention Bureau and Vice-President of ICCA (International Congress and Conference Association) Steen Jakobsen, added: “Direct turnover from delegate spending and from organizer planning sums up to almost 1 billion Euros annually. And more than 20.000 jobs are directly linked with this industry in Copenhagen. Meetings import and export knowledge, create new international partnerships, and raise prestige of the country.”
In Vienna, every congress delegate spends 645 Euro per day, which contributes significantly to the budget of the city. Deputy Director of the Vienna Convention Bureau and Member of the Board of ICCA Ulrike von Arnold confirmed that support from the government and close cooperation between airline, airport, venues, catering, hotels, etc., is key to the success: “Vienna has been a leading meeting industry destination in the world for many years. And it wouldn´t be without a convention bureau – we guarantee integrated approach to clients In Vienna.”
This unique event was organized by the Prague Convention Bureau in cooperation with the Czech Convention Bureau, under the auspices of the City of Prague Councillor for Culture, Preservation, Exhibitions, Tourism and Foreign relations Mr. Václav Novotný. The main partners of the event were Prague Airport, AV Media as a technology partner, and media partners C.O.T. media publishing house, business paper E15, and Metropol TV.