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Conventions are Big Business in Berlin

Berlin held 123,900 events in 2012, involving approximately 10.5 million participants, thus representing a 7% rise in events and an 8% rise in participants compared to 2011. The number of overnight stays also increased by 9% to 6.6 million.

"The convention business generates more than a quarter of all overnight stays in Berlin, and is therefore an essential economic factor", said visitBerlin CEO Burkhard Kieker. "In the future we want to compete even more effectively for international conventions, leveraging the expertise of our marketing offices in London, New York and São Paulo."

Selected highlights of the past year were the EULAR Annual European Congress of Rheumatology, with around 14,700 participants, and the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD), which brought 18,000 participants to the German capital.

In 2012, revenue through hosting meetings and conventions amounted to €1.96bn (+8%). International events accounted for 19% of this total.

In the past ten years, Berlin has developed into one of the leading cities for hosting conventions, with the number of events increasing by 71% and the number of participants by 83% (2003: 72,400 events with 5.7 million participants). Revenue in 2003 amounted to €754m. It has since more than doubled.

In international comparison, according to the statistics of the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), the German capital has become one of the Top 5 leading locations for association meetings since 2004. It is currently ranked fourth.