Austria Center

Austria Center Vienna brings 18 major customers to the Austrian capital in a joint marketing drive involving nine other top international conference centres The Austria Center Vienna is a member of the Leading Centres of Europe, a marketing platform consisting of 10 congress venues.

Partner organisations host joint networking events to offer an attractive programme for organisers of international meetings. The latest get-together will take place in Vienna from 26-27 May – a prime opportunity for the destination and the venue to position themselves as the ideal location for this segment.

The concept behind the Leading Centres of Europe is extremely well thought-out: each year a group of 10 major congress centres from all over Europe invite international conference organisers, PCOs and corporate customers to attend a networking event hosted by one of its members. The aim is to promote networking and information exchange at the host venue. This format also gives the host a golden opportunity to cast itself in the best possible light.

Susanne Baumann-Söllner, Managing Director of the Austria Center Vienna, is delighted with the chance to welcome such important guests to Vienna from 26-27 May: “Large-scale international congresses rotate between destinations, meaning that they only return to a particular venue every few years at the most. But it is still important to keep in touch with them as locations tend to be booked three to five years in advance. It was with this in mind that the head of our sales team, Michael Part, initiated the Leading Centres initiative more than 10 years ago as a joint marketing platform for the continent’s top venues to establish long-term relationships with major customers.“

Joint events as a win-win situation for conference centres and their customers “The Leading Centres events create a platform which gives customers access to special appointments at individual member venues or at the annual networking events, enabling them to make a direct comparison of the amenities and level of service offered by each of the top 10 locations. This saves organisers and PCOs the effort that goes into identifying the right venue. The networking events also give customers the chance to network with each other, compare experiences and talk to each other about all the latest developments and issues,” confirmed Michael Part, Head of Sales at the Austria Center Vienna.

“And as congress centres we are able to talk to multiple prospective customers at the same time. By concentrating the discussions we are able to better understand and satisfy our customers’ needs,” he concluded. Feedback on these events is always very positive, and invitations are hot property. “This is why we are particularly pleased that the next joint customer meeting is taking place in Vienna from 26-27 May – and that in our capacity as host we can showcase all of the organisational, international and cultural advantages that our destination has to offer. Anyone who sees the city and its congress infrastructure first hand is bound to take away a lasting impression,” explained Susanne Baumann-Söllner, who has high hopes of securing bookings from the 18 top congress customers for the Austria Center Vienna in years to come. Significant economic impact for the destination

“This format is so valuable because international association meetings and corporate meetings are our most important customer segment by a considerable margin. Besides keeping us busy, they also generate a huge amount of induced economic impact for Vienna as a destination – each year the Austria Center Vienna alone is responsible for gross value added of around EUR 250 million. International congress delegates spend an average of EUR 534 per day in Vienna, which is around three times as much as the average tourist,” Baumann-Söllner explained.