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EIBTM 2008 – a boom for the global meetings industry

eTN Staff Writer  Feb 20, 2009

The official independent ABC audit confirms that EIBTM achieved a total attendance of 8,100 visitors and hosted buyers, a record number, establishing the event as the largest gathering of the global meetings industry that is independently audited.

Top line statistics from the record event:

- A 25 percent increase (over 2007) in pre-scheduled appointments which topped 50,000
- 2,600 delegates participating in the education program – 30 percent up on 2007
-3,725 hosted buyers up over 12 percent on the previous year
- 8,100 total attendance marking a 6 percent increase on 2007

Comments from exhibitors, hosted buyers, and trade visitors confirmed that EIBTM was a “bumper year.”

Mr. Peter Bull, Saleslink Marketing Portugal said, “We had 290 pre-scheduled appointments in three days. We haven’t stopped. On Wednesday we had 14 signed specific group enquiries.”

Ms Tereza Zarogianni, Eventit Greece said, “It’s been fantastic business – no recession here; at least not here at EIBTM.”

Suzan Tosunlar, director of Brand Services, Swisshotel commented, “A very good show, we received lots of good requests; it was far better than expected.”

Hosted buyer Dicky Riel, general manager, A La Carte International said, “This was the most fantastic EIBTM event so far. I am very positive and did all my appointments plus twenty more.”

“You just had to walk down the aisles to see how many meetings were being undertaken and how much business was being negotiated,” said Paul Kennedy, MBE and group exhibition director for RTE’s portfolio of meetings and incentive events.

Final show statistics show that the largest ever gathering of hosted buyers came from as far afield as Austrlalia, China, India, Thailand, and the Americas. There was also an increase in visitors from all of the major markets over previous years including more visitors from Germany, France, Switzerland, France, UK, Italy, and Spain where 2,810 visitors attended – an increase of 36.3 percent on 2007. Europe represented 89.2 percent of the total visitor attendance with the remaining 10.8 percent from the rest of the world.

Barbara Jamison, sales manager, Europe at Visit London said: “This year’s EIBTM proved to be one of the most successful shows to date. 2,000 clients visited the stand with £54 million worth of enquiries to date, record visitor figures to both our London destination presentations and to our partner areas.

“EIBTM is a key industry event for Visit London and it has proved year on year to be a key driver for events in the UK capital. Our target for the show was to beat last year’s figures, and following a very busy few days of appointments and stand activity we expect to at least double that amount in confirmed business this year. Proving that EIBTM is the place for ‘best business’ it was particularly pleasing to see that the Millennium Gloucester Hotel on our stand confirmed business from an Italian buyer worth £16,000 and received another tentative booking worth £110,000.”

Ihsan Gursory of Chicago Convention also had a bumper show, stating, “A very successful show for us, we had about 55 appointments in 2 days. We are very happy with what we have achieved in Barcelona this year, and its going to be really interesting for our city.”

Thorsten Meier of Leading Hotels of the World said, “We had the best ever first day with over 250 highly potential appointments. The difference between EIBTM and other trade shows is that 10 minutes before opening time, the floor was already busy – it was unbelievable.”

“These comments and EIBTM’s record figures show not only how resilient the meetings market is in challenging times but the reputation EIBTM has as the place to do business. To me, it certainly seemed that more actual business was being transacted on the show floor than ever before,” concluded Paul Kennedy.

To exhibit or attend EIBTM 2009, which takes place from December 1-3 in Barcelona, go to

EIBTM 2008 – a boom for the global meetings industry
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