TW, Sonja-Isabell Slafka
It was the first time that TW – the global magazine for meeting, incentive and event professionals – was a media partner during CONVENTA 2010. TW decided to be media partner as it saw new possibilities in the MICE industry in the region of South-East Europe. The readers of TW are very interested in this region. South-East Europe offers meeting and event planners a wide-ranging and manifold selection of unique cities, combined with history, tradition and art. The fascinating and diverse landscapes provide abundant incentive options and all this is topped off by the almost proverbial hospitality and friendliness of the local population. This year, 200 international meeting planners traveled to the capital of Slovenia, to Ljubljana, for a cup of coffee at one-to-one expert meetings with the 113 exhibitors from a host of countries. CONVENTA 2010 was a huge success! Interest in the SE European market is growing. In comparison with last year, the number of exhibitors and hosted buyers was up by 35%. A number of study trips to the region completed the range of tradeshow features.       

TOMAŽ KRUŠIČ, Director of Intours DMC
“Convention tourism is one of the most complex fields within the entire tourism sector. Due to its multiplicative effects, intricacy, complexity and the high budgets for individual events, there are numerous exhibitions organised throughout the world (EIBTM, IMEX, Meedex, etc.).
Finally, the map of organised exhibitions now includes Ljubljana and the Conventa exhibition. The beginnings were modest (the Simex exhibition 4 years ago) but the idea, conviction and willpower of its organisers were fortunately strong enough to make this year’s Conventa an important international event that is supported by both the most important global organisers of similar events and by the representatives of specialised agencies or hosted buyers who will respond to the invitation in large numbers. We are therefore convinced that Conventa 2010 will be a success.
Our experiences last year, as well as those of other participants, were very positive, as the organisation and quality of the meetings were good and the hosted buyers attended the exhibition because of an honest interest in SE Europe. Numerous exhibitors were thus pleased with the show’s concrete results. We hope that Conventa’s importance will grow over the next few years and that the state, the city and the hotels will additionally increase their support for this event, which is of exceptional importance for Ljubljana.”

TINA MOŽINA, Director of Kompas Incoming d.d.
“In the face of the overflow of destination offers that we have been experiencing from foreign competitive agencies in this last and chaotic year, concretely-oriented and aimed sales activities are even more important. With its rich offer of Balkan destinations, Conventa is becoming increasingly interesting for foreign buyers. Being a local service provider, it increases the added value of our promotion and ensures greater recognisability. I see Conventa’s biggest advantage in the participation of carefully chosen international hosted buyers. We are able to support our words and persuasion along the lines of Why Slovenia? Why SE Europe? with carefully chosen and organised study trips. Buyers can choose from destinations such as Ljubljana, Bled, Portorož, Opatija and Rijeka, Zagreb, Belgrade and Montenegro. In this way, we enable the participants to get a clearer idea of the region. In our experience, such activities generate the best results.”

MATJAŽ ŽNIDARŠIČ, Marketing Board Member, St. Bernardin Hotels 
“I see Conventa today as one of the most important marketing events of the Slovenian meetings industry. A tested and proven model of a marketing event that has developed in Europe over the last fifteen years has been successfully implemented in Slovenia. It substantially increases our recognisability in the convention and meetings market in this part of Europe. The large attendance of exhibitors from SE Europe ensures additional interest for visits of potential clients from across Europe and more remote markets. The high quality of the Slovenian meetings offer further increases the possibility of concrete orders.
I see the connection with SE Europe as being very important and useful for the Slovenian meetings industry. In my own experience, important global players in the field of organising conventions and other meetings come to Conventa to research new potential destinations and Conventa’s appeal lies in them finding information on the extensive range on offer. In this extensive range, and of this I am certain, Slovenian meetings have a strong enough advantages to place us on the top.”