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New analysis of Australia's international business events industry

Angelos Restanis - 24 November 2016, 00:38

The analysis found one in four business events attracted to Australia by the AACB’s members are in the health sector, while one in five business events attracted to Australia are in the professional, scientific and technical services sector.


Fresh analysis of the business events industry has found delegates attending international meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions in Australia will spend more than $750 million across the next decade.

However, the analysis, which forms part of the industry’s forward calendar that has just been released by the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux (AACB), also shows there is still scope for growth.

“More than 360 international business events will be held through until September 2023, according to the AACB Forward Calendar,” said the Association’s Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Hiebl.

“More than 190,000 global experts, thought leaders and influencers will travel from overseas to attend these business events, with total delegate expenditure expected to top $750 million.

“The analysis found one in four business events attracted to Australia by the AACB’s members are in the health sector, while one in five business events attracted to Australia are in the professional, scientific and technical services sector.

“The analysis provides tangible evidence of how competitive the international business events market is – there were 235 bids that Australia made for business events across the next decade which were unsuccessful.

“International business events are an integral part of the visitor economy and play a vital role in lifting Australia’s knowledge base – they are platforms for innovation, ideas and new technology.”

Key findings:

Successful bids

  • More than $750 million in delegate expenditure has been confirmed by the AACB’s members into the future.
  • There are 360 upcoming international business events scheduled to be held in Australia.
  • These events are expected to attract more than 190,000 international delegates (one-third of all delegates).
  • One in four business events attracted to Australia are in the health sector (totalling 97,000 delegates).
  • One in five business events attracted to Australia are in the professional, scientific and technical services sector (totalling 48,000 delegates).
  • While financial/insurance services and retail trade sit and sixth and seventh respectively for number of international events on the forward calendar, they rank third (26,000) and fourth (23,000) for number of delegates attracted.
  • More than half of international meetings and conventions are known to have a dedicated trade component.
Unsuccessful bids
  • While Australia has secured 360 international business events into the future, there were 235 bids which were unsuccessful.
  • If all of these bids had been successful, this would have attracted an additional 215,000 international delegates to Australia.
  • While there has been a significant proportion of successful bids in the health sector, 27 per cent of unsuccessful bids also fell within this sector.
Bid pipeline
  • AACB members have 157 international business event bids on their books – they are yet to hear whether or not these bids have been successful.
  • This equates to 803 event days in the “bid pipeline”, 85,000 international delegates and total delegate spending of more than $350 million.

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