Destination Guide: Singapore

Eurofinance picks Singapore's Raffles for conference

Eurofinance holds 15th annual conference and exhibition in Singapore

Eurofinance picks Singapore's Raffles for conference
Eurofinance picks Singapore's Raffles for conference

Client: Eurofinance
Event: Conference
Group size: 300
Agency: Zibrant
Date
: 12-14 May 2009
Venue: Raffles City Convention Centre
Budget: Undisclosed

The Brief: This was Eurofinance's 15th annual conference and exhibition, an event focusing on international cash, treasury and risk.
The 300 delegates were arriving in Singapore from the UK and all over Asia. The event had been successfully held in the destination for the past three years, so fitted the requirement for a main plenary with adjacent exhibition space.

Challenges: "The biggest problem we had this year was in planning ahead when we knew room rates were lowering throughout Asia because of economic conditions," says Zibrant business development director for Asia-Pacific Jacquie Freer.
"You would normally get a better rate booking 12 months in advance, but it was a complete reverse situation this year. It meant we needed flexibility from suppliers."
The event in May also coincided with a rise in the global spread of swine flu, meaning health precautions had to be taken and contingency plans drawn up.

Solution: The agency has an Asian office in Kuala Lumpur, so could undertake supplier negotiations at close quarters. "We were able to speak face to face, which always helps in this part of the world," says Freer.
To assuage any concerns about swine flu, masks were brought on-site and assurances sought from Singaporean authorities that arrivals would be screened effectively.

Execution: The three-day event was held at the Raffles City Convention Centre, and incorporated a networking reception as well as three days of conferencing and an exhibition on the side.
Rather than a gala dinner, however, delegates split into groups to enjoy social options; many visited Clarke Quay, others spent an evening at the Equinox Complex.
"The venue's central location meant there were a lot of options for private dining and receptions," says Freer. "Singapore works well for events such as this. It's clean, accessible, and you don't have any political problems like you have in Bangkok. "

Verdict: "Eurofinance has been organising events in Singapore since 1994," says Matt Herring, head of event management at Eurofinance. "With an international mix, bedrooms and hotels are key to the event's success and, by working with Zibrant, we've achieved high levels of customer service."

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