Over 100,000 connections made at IBTM World 2022

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IBTM World, which this year explored the connection between events and culture, closed today (1 December 2022) with over 100,000 business meetings having taken place and over 10,000 attendees gathering in Barcelona for the three days of the event.

IBTM World 2022 investigated how the technology we use, the experiences we create, and the destinations we visit create limitless cultures for businesses and incredible potential for events.

Over 2,200 exhibiting companies from 150 countries around the world were in attendance, including the CVBs of Spain, Ireland, Brussels, Croatia, The Czech Republic, Canada, Malaysia, Jordan, Bahrain, Canada, Miami, Las Vegas and Boston, as well as Meliá Hotels and Barceló Hotels.

Over 3,500 high quality buyers were present, with prestigious corporate, association and agency Hosted Buyers attending, including European Union of Medicine in Assurance and Social Security (EUMASS), Pfizer, COSMOPOLIS, International Stereoscopic Union, SAUDI Telecom Company, UNICEO (United Network of International Corporate Events Organisers), The British Pain Society, Maritz Global Events, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, citigroup inc., and CWT Meetings & Events.

Commenting on their experience at IBTM World, Zinhle Nzama, Acting Chief Convention Bureau Officer at the South African National Convention Bureau said: “One of the key takeouts so far is collaboration and partnerships. We have had conversations with other convention bureaus from the continent on how we can partner to keep business in the region, before it goes out into the world. A lot of the meetings that have taken place on the stand have resulted in business leads. We continue to see how face to face interactions are imperative in business events.”

Matthias Widor, Cluster General Manager, Kigali Marriott Hotel / Four Points by Sheraton, said: “It’s so good to have face-to-face meetings again, especially after the last two and a half years. The quality of buyers is very high, and we were able to sign business on the show floor with further warm leads to follow up. Attending IBTM World is important to create confidence in the industry and to sell a new and exciting destination like Rwanda is easier to do in person. We will definitely come back and recommend it to colleagues too.”

Ron Williams, Business Development Manager, TBEX Conferences LLC, said: “IBTM is one of the best shows I have ever attended. You can meet with the people you want to meet with and have spontaneous meetings with people you didn’t get a chance to make an appointment with. People are relaxed and it’s easy to get around, plus it’s in Barcelona which is amazing!”

Cynthia Vercruysse, Manager Marketing Fairs and Events, Ansell, said: “I am truly amazed by the organisation of this event. It brings together so many interesting destinations, venues, experienced people and insightful information all in one place.”

Brendan Gormley, Events Manager, Events Manager, BBC, said: “A great range of destinations to meet with. I found the organisation to be very smooth and the city of Barcelona very welcoming. I had so many back-to-back meetings which has been great.”

This year The Association Leaders’ Forum and The Corporate Experiences Day both took place in exciting venues in Barcelona. The Corporate Experiences Day, a tailored day of learning for Corporate Buyers, provided an interactive look at the latest technology and sustainability developments within the events industry. The Association Leaders’ Forum, curated by Stylianos Filopoulos, International Associations Expert, considered the role that associations play in our changeable world.

In partnership with ACS, IBTM World’s Knowledge Programme was well-attended with interactive sessions focusing on the event’s core theme of ‘culture creation’ including session tracks on connections, business, careers, brands and experiences.

During IBTM World, several sessions revealed the latest market trends and insights, including the Global Meetings & Events Trends report presented by AMEX. In addition, the annual IBTM World Trends Watch report, presented by its author, Alistair Turner, MD of Eight PR, explored how current world events are shaping culture, influencing both the events we create, and the people that attend them. A preview of the 2023 Trends Report is now available for download on the IBTM World website.

The highly anticipated Stand Awards returned this year with awards going to Visit Norway / Norway Convention Bureau who won the award for Best Stand Feature; Graduate Hotels / Marine & Lawn Hotels & Resorts took home the award for Best Stand; Menorca Island DMC was awarded Best Culture Campaign; Abu Dhabi received the award for Best Large Stand and Atout France was awarded Best Stand Personnel.

During the event, IBTM announced that it has signed a new three-year contract with Barcelona Convention Bureau and Fira de Barcelona that will see IBTM World take place in the city up to and including the 2025 edition. The new contract builds on the existing 18-year relationship between the three organisations, with the next edition confirmed at Fira Gran Via for 28 – 30 November 2023.

Commenting on the close of the event, David Thompson, IBTM World Event Director, said: “IBTM World 2022 has been a fantastic success, surpassing all our expectations with more quality one-to-one business meetings taking place per attendee than in 2019. It was brilliant to receive feedback on the show floor that there is so much appetite for doing business that many exhibitors and buyers have already scheduled additional meetings to take place in the coming weeks. There has been a real sense of excitement and we look forward to returning to Barcelona in 2023.”

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