Dubai Business Events (DBE), the city’s official convention bureau, showcased Dubai’s dynamic business events offering last week at IMEX in Frankfurt – the leading global events industry exhibition. Attracting nearly 9,000 hosted buyers and visitors participating in 57,000 individual appointments and stand presentations with exhibitors, the 14th edition of the annual trade show marked an increase of 9 percent in the number of attendees from last year, according to the organizer, IMEX Group.
DBE was one of 3,500 exhibitors that welcomed more than 8,800 meetings professionals and industry leaders from across the world to converge on Frankfurt for three days of all things meetings, incentives, conferencing and exhibitions (MICE). DBE proudly showcased the city’s growing reputation as a global knowledge hub alongside the emirate’s great hospitality, state-of-the-art facilities and world-class infrastructure.
Innovation has become the driving force for development in the city, and in line with the UAE government’s vision to invest in key sectors such as education, health, energy, transportation, space and water, DBE has set its sights on attracting leading industry events in these sectors in support of developing a strong knowledge-based economy.
Over the course of the exhibition, the Dubai stand welcomed more than 430 visitors. In addition, DBE and its partners recorded substantial interaction with over 1,145 hosted buyers and trade media. The 25 co-partners that were featured at Dubai’s exhibition stand mirrored the full spectrum of the city’s tourism sector, including Emirates Airline, Dubai World Trade Centre, Jumeirah Group, Arabian Adventures, Rotana Hotels, The Address Hotels & Resorts and Atlantis, The Palm – all highlighting the dynamic offering available in Dubai.
Steen Jakobsen, Director, Dubai Business Events (DBE), said: “IMEX is an incredibly important platform to raise awareness about Dubai’s extraordinary business event offering, and as the city continues to push the boundaries on the experiences available for visitors we will continue to concentrate our efforts to attract conferences that will bring a high calibre of industry leaders to the city.
“This year, more than ever, we witnessed significant interest in our destination. Anticipating the growing thirst for information on the vibrant and diverse experiences the emirate has to offer, DBE stepped up its activities to underpin Dubai’s positioning as a premier business events hub. Beyond exhibiting the strong market fundamentals made up of global connectivity, state-of-the-art facilities and great hospitality, we organised a number of side events that created plenty of opportunities for our partners to interact with the big players in the global MICE industry.”
Kick-starting this year’s presence at IMEX with a high-level networking session, DBE hosted a breakfast exclusive for a group of leading corporate meeting planners a day ahead of the official exhibition start. On the second day of the show, DBE welcomed a group of international journalists to the Dubai stand for a detailed city update, charting Dubai’s recent rise as a top business destination, as well as highlighting achievements over the past year and outlining the city’s ambitious growth plans for the coming years. DBE also hosted senior association, corporate and agency professionals as well as international media at a networking dinner during the event, and invited a number of hosted buyers to enjoy warm Arabian hospitality at the stand throughout the three exhibition days.
Jakobsen also participated in the IMEX Politicians Forum, which has been running for more than a decade and brings together industry and government leaders to discuss how cooperation can further advance the meetings and events industry. Jakobsen spoke on a panel centred on destination branding, demonstrating the impact the ‘Dubai brand’ has had on growing the business events industry in the city.
Currently home to more than half of the Middle East’s business events, Dubai continues to actively position itself as a leading regional and international knowledge hub, leveraging its premier meetings infrastructure to support the sharing and exchange of experiences between domestic and international partners in order to accelerate development.
Building on the momentum of IMEX, DBE is currently finalising preparations for its fifth study mission since the beginning of the year. Starting on 29 April, the team will welcome a delegation of hosted buyers and select media from the Americas to inspect Dubai’s attractive business events offering and gain hands-on experience of the city. This will precede DBE sales missions to Paris, Vienna and Zurich in May, with The Meetings Show in London finally rounding off the team’s activities in the first half of 2016; all with the goal of cementing Dubai’s position as one of the world’s leading business events destinations.