To put together a successful bid is a lot about communication and cooperation among various parties.
Since 2010, the Prague Convention Bureau runs so called Ambassador Program with aim to educate potential congress ambassadors (local representatives of international associations) about the benefits of cooperation with the CVB and a PCO, in terms of putting together a competitive bid.
Q: Who should be involved in the preparation of a successful bid?
In ideal case, this should be the cooperation of the local scientific community representatives, which is a must for at least 80 % of international association congresses, together with the local CVB as a guarantor representing the destination and the stakeholders representing commercial sector like a congress venue, hoteliers and possibly also a PCO, if the client is willing to involve the PCO from the beginning.
Q: What is the role of a PCO agency in the bidding process?
The role of a PCO in the bidding process differs case by case. As mentioned, some clients are not open to cooperate with PCOs at the stage of the candidacy, and involve the PCO only when the congress is already confirmed for the destination. At our educational seminars, we try to encourage the “congress ambassadors” to use the PCO services from the early beginning, as involving all the stakeholders could only be beneficial for a strong bid.
Q: Who should cover financial investments in the bidding process?
This really depends on the project specification and stakeholders involved.
Q: Latest stories of success?
It is not the latest story of a successful bid, but a very good example of cooperation of various stakeholders from the public and private sector with aim to put together a strong candidacy. There is probably no better example than the upcoming ICCA Congress 2017, which Prague will host in November 12-15th. The initiative of the local ICCA members has been supported not only by other industry stakeholders, the government, and the City of Prague, but also other countries from the CEE region. The personal participation of the Mayor of Prague at the bid presentation also played an important role.