Imex 2010 signals global growth and strong business outlook

The eighth Imex will open on May 25, 2010 at Messe Frankfurt with its largest ever hosted-buyer programme in place and buyer, exhibitor and trade visitor targets all on course for year-on-year growth.

“We have spent the last 12 months concentrating on developing new partnerships with intermediaries who can deliver more high-quality buyers from the most important and resilient long-haul markets,” explains Imex group chairman, Ray Bloom.

Fortyfive new hosted-buyer groups have been confirmed for Imex 2010, with many of these coming through key global hotel groups who have expanded the regions from which they are delivering clients. These include Marriott International, Mandarin Oriental, Kempinski, Hilton, Starwood, the Ritz, Rocco Forte, Concorde, Sol Melia and Leading Hotels of the World.

A total of 50 exhibitors have already increased their stand space compared to 2009. From Europe, Switzerland, Luxembourg, the Czech Tourism Authority, Romania, Serbia, Iceland, Meet Sicily and Figur Tourism will all have a larger presence at the show. Continued strength among Asian exhibitors is also demonstrated by increased space for Seoul, Korea, Malaysia, Macau, Indonesia and Japan.

From the Middle East, Qatar and Discovery Jordan will be taking bigger stands, whilst further growth in the Latin American market has prompted Argentina and Uruguay to increase their stand space.

Other larger exhibitors include St Petersburg Express, China, DMC South Africa and the Canadian Tourism Commission.

Bloom…on target

Among the hotel groups, Rezidor, Ritz Carlton, Steigenberger, Mövenpick, Fairmont/Swissotel Raffles, Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Rixos Hotels have also increased the size of their stands.

Hotels also account for a number of brand new exhibitors to Imex 2010. These include Scandic Hotels, Albert Management and Warwick Hotel International which is making a welcome return. Visitors will also see Meeting Point International, Showcare, DMC4EU, Business on Cruise and Green Globe Tourism exhibiting for the first time. Abercrombie & Kent returns to Imex with its biggest stand ever.

Spain has once again increased its presence at Imex. This now makes it second only to the GCB Germany stand in terms of size.

In addition three suppliers brand new to the meetings industry will each be celebrating winning a free place on the Wild Card Pavilion. This year’s winners are: Uganda; Morzine in France and the Hof Conference Centre in Iceland.

The US Pavilion will once again be an extremely diverse and business-centred section of the show.  Anchorage, Arizona, Chicago, Texas, the Eastern Seaboard and New York City will all be present. Las Vegas also plans to bring up to 16 partner exhibitors to Frankfurt.

Also new this year will be the offer of discounted airfares from Qantas. Qantas operates 28 flights a week from London Heathrow via the Far East into seven gateway cities across Australia and will be making the discount fares available to all approved Imex participants.

Summing up the benefits of Imex 2010, Bloom, says: “Imex continues to advance, invest and innovate. This year will be no exception. In fact, with industry sentiment both realistic and robust, we must continue to deliver on all fronts. That means high-quality buyers, high numbers of genuine business appointments, satisfied exhibitors, targeted, relevant and interesting professional education and, not least, the chance to meet old colleagues and peers face to face as well as developing new contacts. Never has Imex been more comprehensive or more necessary for business.”