The UK Events Market Trends Survey (UKEMTS), has been undertaken annually since 1993 – with Eventia recently re-affirming its commitment to the project.
The research covers the supply-side or venue perspective of the business events industry.
The research follows the UK Economic Impact Study’ (UKEIS), published last week by the MPI Foundation in conjunction with Leeds Metropolitan University’s International Centre for Research in Events, Tourism and Hospitality.
UKEIS draws on data from the 2011 calendar year provided by venues, destinations, event organisers and event attendees, while UKEMTS findings are based on 2012 data supplied by venues.
The survey show that 35% think that business levels will remain on a par, and only 12% are projecting a downturn.
On the back of this, almost one in four venues are planning capital investment projects worth upwards of £100,000 in 2013, slightly up on 2012.
Elsewhere, the research showed there were an estimated 85.5 million delegate attendances at events in 2012 -an estimated 1.3 million events with an average attendance of 64 people, lower than the average of 80 delegates in 2011- however, a higher percentage of events were residential at the event venue in 2012, 28% compared to 20% in 2011.
There was an average of 373 events per venue in 2012, on a par with 2011 (an average of 369 events per venue). Conference and training centres (average of 528 events), academic venues (438 events) and hotels (416 events) typically hosted more events than other types of venue. In terms of market share, hotels staged 59 per cent of all business events.
Almost two-thirds (61%) of events lasted between four hours and a day and a quarter (25%) lasted two days. The overall average duration was 1.6 days, identical to 2011.
Intermediary agencies strengthened their involvement in event management: approximately one third (35 per cent) of events were organised by a professional conference organiser (PCO) or event management agency, higher than the figure of 30% for 2011.
Simon Hughes, Eventia chairman and managing partner of MCHA, said: "UKEMTS is a crucial barometer of what’s happening in the business events sector and should be required reading for anyone who needs an informed view of the trends and changes in our sector. The UKEMTS findings, taken together with the UKEIS data, provide the industry with some powerful promotional and advocacy tools. Eventia will certainly be using the market intelligence revealed in the two surveys for education, marketing and lobbying purposes."