WTM increases focus on MICE sector

World Travel Market’s focus dedicated to the meetings, conference and incentive travel sector will continue to grow in stature at this year's show, highlighted by the support of key associations - ABPCO, BACD, MIA, MPI UK – as well as EIBTM and C&IT magazine. Taking place on Tuesday 15 November, new initiatives for the day include two stage events dedicated exclusively to the airline and hotel sectors. The day commences on the World Stage at 11.00 with an airline panel discussion entitled “The Forgotten Traveller – The Future of Premium Air Travel/ The Airline Traveller – Managing Customer Expectations’ organised with WTM’s broadcast partner CNN. The event will be chaired by Richard Quest, one of CNN’s high profile news and business anchors and correspondents. He will be joined on stage by leading players representing the low cost, private charter, airport and multinational airline alliance sectors. With a record number of hotel exhibitors at this year’s World Travel Market the main event, on the World Stage in the afternoon at 14.00, will be the bringing together of David Kong President and Chief Executive Officer, Best Western; Reas Kondraschow Senior Vice President and Managing Director, Cendant Hotel Group International; Jurgen Fischer President Commercial Operations, Hilton Group plc and Gerard Greene CEO Yotel in a ‘Hotels 2005’ panel discussion. The day’s programme also features two very diverse seminars. C&IT will be holding ‘The Big Event – Olympics 2012’ in Cityside Room 4 between 11.00 and 12.15. This will take a detailed insight into the impact on the UK events industry in the run up to, during and after the 2012 London Olympics. In the UK alone the meetings market is worth £11.7 billion to the economy according to research by the government body, Business Tourism Partnership. And it is predicted that the Olympics could generate £2 billion to the UK visitor economy over a seven year period. So, how can event planners get a real slice of the lucrative action? In a sector where networking is vital to new business and profit potential, the second seminar run by Patrick Delaney, Managing Director, The Ovation Group and Paul Kennedy, Group Exhibition Director EIBTM will take a look at how to be an ‘effective networker’. This takes place in Cityside Room 4 from 12.45 to 13.45. Fiona Jeffery, Group Exhibition Director World Travel Market comments: “The growing importance of the meetings, conference and incentive travel sectors at World Travel Market is reflected not just in the number of supporters involved in the day but through our association with CNN and the aliber of panellists from hotels and airlines.

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