ACC Liverpool opened in 2008. Was it always part of the plan to add the Liverpool Exhibition Centre?
It was never part of the master plan - the site was originally going to have inner-city apartments. However, Liverpool already has a lot of these developments and with the economy as it is and the increasing requests we’ve received from potential clients for bigger space, we decided to expand a year ago.
The additional 8,100sqm will allow us to house bigger congresses and corporate events. In terms of our overall revenue, 65 per cent comes from associations and we expect this split between corporate and association business to stay the same once the new centre is complete.
How are you adding value for delegates?
We have just launched our new Delegate Card. The card will be given to every delegate attending a conference at ACC Liverpool and offers discounts and privileges across a range of bars, restaurants, hotels and attractions in Liverpool and is valid for one year.
We have also been trialling a white label event app, which a client can adapt to their event with the relevant branding, floor plans, schedules etc. This is expected to launch at BBC Worldwide Showcase in February.
What is your USP?
We’ve been a city for 804 years so we have a lot of history, but we also have a compact city that has been developed in recent years with modern conference venues. We started with 2,200 bedrooms and we now have 5,000 - that is more than a 100 per cent increase in less than four years.
What events have you got coming up in 2012?
The International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis will hold it bi-annual meeting June. The International and European Association Congress have moved from London to Liverpool in July because of the Olympics. There is usually a six-week lead time for corporate events, so we might see more event organisers choosing to move from London.