Timing is everything, as the old adage goes, and as Bangkok revels in the news that it has trumped world hotspots such as London, Paris and New York for total international visitor arrivals, the 2013 edition of IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific could not have arrived at a sweeter moment.
Joining the 16 million visitors who have ensured the city’s new found status amongst the world’s most popular destinations will be a record number of exhibitors and delegates attending the world’s only Doublebill Event in MICE and Corporate Travel at the largest show to date this October (1st – 3rd). Delegate numbers for this year’s show are expected to exceed 2,800 in addition to 35% new exhibiting organisations – strong figures that ensure both the city and the event continue to power forward.
Also moving forward at a serious pace is MICE tourism in Thailand, which is up 12% in the first three quarters of the 2013 fiscal year with just under a million MICE travellers expected by the year’s end. A strong ASEAN market and returning visitors from Europe are cited as the major contributors to this growth spurt. With the introduction at this year’s event of the first-ever Luxury Travel Programme post-show tour geared at showcasing Thailand’s appeal to upmarket tastes, these strong figures are only likely to improve.
In light of such exciting new initiatives and positive growth figures, fittingly this year marks the 10th year of IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific co-location and the tenth consecutive year of Thailand as the show’s host country. To consolidate its position this year’s show will see several new initiatives intended to ‘harness opportunities for business generation’. One such implementation is the Online Diary facility which will enable delegates to complete up to 100% of their business appointments before their arrival in Bangkok and ensure they maximise opportunities for new business. Speaking of this new initiative, Managing Director of TTG Asia Media, Darren Ng, said: “We are confident that IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific will also benefit from greater business generation as delegates are able to maximise the outcome of their participation.”
Building on the impressive sales figures of last year’s show (USD 45 million after 6 months and expected to rise above USD 120 million) should be possible from a strong platform of increased participation, a more diversified buyers profile – one that includes a higher percentage of Association Executives and Corporate professionals – and the launch of a dedicated Association Day and Performance Improvement Forum.
“Associations and Corporates are important segments of the MICE buying industry,” explained Ng. “Our collaboration with MCI Group to launch a dedicated education-led Association Day and Performance Improvement Forum enables the show to cater to a larger proportion of these professionals respectively. Our exhibitors now have the added advantage of reaching multiple niche buyer segments at a single industry event, which equates to greater opportunities for business generation.”
With Bangkok now seated at the top table of world cities and a record-breaking event on the horizon, there promises to be much positive energy in air around this year’s show. It’s Bangkok O’Clock…
Paul Broderick is a published author and freelance journalist based in London, UK.