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MCI Amsterdam Joins Forces with Performance Improvement

“We are delighted to be joining forces with one of the Netherland’s leading players in incentive programmes,” said Peter-Willem Burgmans, Managing Director MCI Amsterdam. “This merger will add unique incentive travel solutions to MCI Amsterdam’s core services and enable clients of both companies to choose a single strategic partner for their full range of engagement and activation needs.”

“Our two corporate cultures, vision and focus on the use of live communications complement each other perfectly and, by combining these core characteristics, I am convinced that we will take our current and future clients’ performances to the next level,” said Ingrid Valks, Director of Performance Improvement.

The MCI Group is the world’s leading provider of strategic engagement and activation solutions and a key driver of innovation in the international meetings, events, association and congress industries. Performance Improvement will benefit from MCI’s global network of 56 offices in 29 countries, 1,600 talents and comprehensive solutions for strategically engaging and activating target audiences.

30,000+ Expected Delegates for London Tech Week

London Technology Week organisers are expecting to host more than 30,000 people at over 100 separate events between 16-20 June, London & Partners recently announced.

The announcement comes as the Cities of Opportunity Index from professional services firm, PwC, said that London is “technologically on the top of its game.” The report also listed London as the world leader in economic influence, technology access, reputation as an urban gateway, and its development and design capabilities. The UK capital claimed the number one position ahead of New York, Singapore, Toronto, and San Francisco, improving on its third-place position in PwC’s 2013 index.

London is now the biggest technology cluster in Europe with emerging start-ups setting up alongside global powerhouse brands such as Facebook, Twitter and Google.

Barbara Jamison, Head of Business Development Europe for London & Partners said: “London’s technology credentials are unrivalled right now in Europe. Tech City now spans the entire capital and with that comes ready access to some of the world’s most inspirational tech speakers, the opportunity to embed cutting-edge technology into your events, as well as a vital pool of potential sponsors on the doorstep. London Technology Week is a fantastic new event in our annual calendar and we hope that event planners around the world will be excited by the potential of London and inspired to bring their events to our city.”

London Technology Week is organised by UBM Live, in association with London & Partners - the Mayor’s official organisation for London - ExCeL London and Tech London Advocates.

ECM Launches its Academy – Accelerator of Meetings Industry Worldwide

Following 28 successful years of ECM Summer School, European Cities Marketing is exporting the concept to emerging destinations in non-European continents/regions like Asia, Africa, South America or the Gulf.

“European Cities Marketing offers a know-how transfer operation for the education of Meeting Industry professionals in destinations looking towards a global positioning. The ECM Academy is a tailor-made course for partner organizations outside Europe such as convention bureaux, hotels, PCOs, DMCs, airlines, conference venues, congress centres, convention and exhibition centres, and governmental bodies looking towards to a global promotion of the Meetings Industry,” said Ignasi de Delàs, ECM President, at the launch of the event during the IMEX Frankfurt this week.

In line with the ECM Summer School, the programme aims at leading the students towards practical and hands on education with relevant real cases studies and practical situations. Young people get acquainted with the fundamentals of the industry with a practical training approach developing concentration, teambuilding, interaction in a full immersion course.

Pier Paolo Mariotti, course leader of the ECM Summer School and initiator of the project commented: “To provide a full picture, the last day of the course will consist in 1 open workshop to draw guidelines for growth of the Meetings Industry in the destination, open to all local politicians, professionals and meeting suppliers. The ECM Academy will truly boost the destination as well as developing future leaders in emerging destinations.”

Seasoned practitioners

The major asset of the School is the faculty. Part of it comes from the Summer School, and additional contributions have been set in place. The faculty is not made up of academics but seasoned practitioners with a “tell it as it is” angle based on many years hands-on experience that give added value to the course. The team is composed of : Jonathan Cohen (Azimuth Marketing Communications Ltd), Rémy Cregut (Montreux Music & Convention Centre), Nalan Emre (IMEX), Paul Flackett (IMEX), Elisabeth Hansa (Austria Center Vienna), Cécile Koch (MIM Magazine), Cain Leathem (GB Fitness), Olivier Lépine (Biarritz Tourisme), Anja Loetscher (Geneva Convention Bureau), Bruna Migliazza (Hay Group Italy), Christian Mutschlechner (Vienna Convention Bureau), Michel Neijmann (IAPCO), Miguel Neves (IMEX), Annalisa Ponchia (European Society for Organ Transplantation), Olivier Ponti (Amsterdam Marketing), Mathias Sondermann (SAP Marketing), Mark Spivey (Maritim Hotels), Anne Wallin-Rodven (Oslo Convention Bureau), led by the course leader Pier Paolo Mariotti, CMP CMM.

“We will all do our utmost to ensure the success of the Academy by maintaining the highest standard of course content, retaining, recruiting the very best of speakers, and giving up-to-date examples showcasing latest trends in the Meetings Industry. There is no such training in the meetings industry! Try it out!” said Pier Paolo Mariotti.

Austria Center Vienna to Host Kidney Congress in 2016

The Austria Center Vienna recently concluded its latest booking, with the European Renal Association – European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA) confirming its slot for 2016. This medical congress, focused on nephrology, dialysis, kidney transplantation and high blood pressure, attracts 7,500 kidney specialists, transplant surgeons, geriatric care specialists and cardiologists from more than 100 different countries. Held from 21-25 May 2016 the conference will occupy 22,000m2 of the Austria Center Vienna.

“12,000m2 will be devoted to exhibitions in somewhere in the region of 800-900 scientific posters will be presented on each of the five days. The remaining 10,000m2 will be spread across 12 large rooms and halls, providing space for symposiums and free communication,” said Sales and Event Management head, Elisabeth Hansa.

ERA-EDTA will be returning to the Austria Center Vienna for the fourth time, after events in 1990, 1994 and 2001 each attracted around 4,000 delegates.

Photo Copyright: IAKW-AG, Marius Höfinger

Back to Back Awards for Adelaide Convention Centre

The Adelaide Convention Centre has taken out back to back honours for Public Event of the Year at the Meetings & Events Australia (MEA) National Awards for its Cellar Door Wine Festival Adelaide.

The Award, announced at Saturday night’s MEA 2013 National Awards Gala Dinner in Kuala Lumpur, takes the Centre’s tally of awards for the Festival to 10 over the last three years.

The Festival, entirely created and hosted by the Adelaide Convention Centre, also received the Platinum Award from MEA for the highest score for all award submissions (excluding individual).

Recognition for the Festival is not only coming from industry peers but also from consumers with the event attracting record numbers this year. Over 9,000 visitors passed through the doors of the Adelaide Convention Centre for the Festival over the three days (Feb 14-16).

Record number of visitors

This year, the Festival grew by 30 per cent with a record number of visitors joining a record number of participating wineries and food producers.

More than 170 South Australian wineries and producers offered tastings of thousands of wines and products at the Festival including many new releases not available in retail outlets. Thirty new wineries joined the Festival this year.

Adelaide Convention Centre Chief Executive Alec Gilbert said the MEA awards help to put the national spotlight on Adelaide.

“With the Awards being held in Kuala Lumpur this year there’s also a chance for greater international recognition,” said Gilbert.

“Each year, the Festival attracts an increasing number of visitors, providing South Australia with the opportunity to showcase its world leading wine and premium food sectors.

“The Festival also provides a chance for the Centre to increase its capabilities and experience as a host and partner for large consumer events and exhibitions.

“This experience is invaluable as the Centre expands and existing capacity constraints are lifted to give us the ability to bid for and host bigger national consumer events.”

Tom Hulton Recipient of 2014 JMIC Unity Award

Joint Meetings Industry Council (JMIC) President Philippe Fournier has announced the winner of the 2014 JMIC Unity Award as Tom Hulton, currently Director of International Relations with the IMEX Group. Hulton formally received the award at the IMEX Awards Banquet in Frankfurt, Germany, on May 21.

In making the Award, Fournier said: “Our number one objectives in JMIC have always been to grow the beneficial interactions amongst member organizations and to reach out to the broader business and governmental communities with whom we must interact. Tom’s extensive roles in both these areas over many years make him a perfect candidate for the Unity Award and we are pleased to be making it to him at a point where the results of his work are becoming more evident by the day.”

“Tom Hulton has always been very supportive of ECM activities, we are keen to share key messages and mutually benefit from developments in the Meetings Industry. For us, nominating Tom was obvious, in line with our strengthened cooperation sealed in 2013," said Ignasi de Delàs, ECM President.

Great professionalism

Heike Mahmoud, ECM Vice-president Meetings Industry said: “Our relationship with IMEX has always been one of great professionalism. We are very proud of this new milestone and want to congratulate Tom Hulton on its achievements and valuable contribution to the international Meetings Industry as a whole.”

Following a career that included extensive hotel executive experiences and a role as CEO of the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), Tom assumed the position of Director of International Relations with IMEX, where he has helped to raise the political profile of the Meetings Industry within Government circles in Europe and around the world. As a key player in the IMEX Politicians Forum, he has also effected better communication and recognition of industry issues at local, regional and national government levels all over the world, and with the launch of the IMEX ‘Declaration of Support for the Meetings Industry’ he helped profile politicians who understand the full economic impact of the meetings and events industry on their communities. In addition, through his work in developing the IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum, he has been instrumental in harnessing the imagination of the most promising students and encouraging them to join the Meetings Industry.

The Unity Award is made annually to an individual who represents the best qualities of Meetings Industry Leadership and who has devoted major efforts to creating stronger relationships and a greater cohesion for the industry. Award criteria evaluate industry leadership and initiative both in a candidate's own professional conduct and the efforts they put into industry-building through association, education and professional development activities.

Photo Source: www.eiat-conference.org