It is official – Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) has been named as the World’s Best Convention Centre!
The announcement was made at the Annual General Assembly of the International Association of Congress Centres (AIPC) in Nantes, France.
Queensland Premier and Minister for the Arts Annastacia Palaszczuk congratulated BCEC and operators AEG Ogden on the prestigious award, which has previously been won by centres in leading global cities such as London and Vancouver.
“This award acknowledges what all Queenslanders already know – that we have some of the greatest show spaces in the world, right here on our doorstep,” the Premier said.
“This is a great honour for our State and I am proud that Brisbane continues to be recognised on the world stage.
Acting Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Queensland Minister for Tourism and Major Events Kate Jones said the award stoked confidence in Queensland’s tourism and events industry.
“This award confirms Queensland’s reputation as a world-class tourism and events destination,” Ms Jones said.
“Following this global recognition, we look forward to welcoming more industry leaders and business visitors to future events at BCEC.”
AEG Ogden Chairman and CEO, Harvey Lister said: “As a Queensland-based venue management company, AEG Ogden is particularly proud that our flagship venue has been recognised as the world’s best.”
“We are gratified as the internationally recognised AIPC APEX Award is based solely on client evaluations by major convention and exhibition organisers around the world, and independently assessed by the global market research organisation, Ipsos.”
“This award will further increase opportunities for Brisbane and Queensland in bidding for major conventions in the future.”
The AEG Ogden managed venue has previously been ranked among the world’s top three convention centres by AIPC on three separate occasions.
BCEC General Manager Bob O’Keeffe said this was the pinnacle of the Centre’s 158 industry awards, and global acclaim both for the Centre’s capabilities and for Brisbane as a leading international meetings destination.
“It is a great honour for the dedicated and passionate AEG Ogden team that has operated the venue for the past 21 years. These awards are an international benchmark for industry excellence.”
BCEC celebrated 21 years in June having hosted 18,000 events, 14 million visitors and delivering $3.87 billion in economic benefit to Queensland. Future bookings for the next 10 years number more than 1,300 with an economic value of $1 billion.
Industry leaders were quick to congratulate BCEC with Managing Director of Tourism Australia, John O’Sullivan describing the award as a great outcome for Australia: “This is a great achievement by the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre. The Awards are judged on international client evaluation and therefore reflect the global calibre of the Centre’s offering and Australia’s international competitiveness as a business events destination.”
Leanne Coddington, CEO of Tourism and Events Queensland said Queensland had proven itself a leader in the staging of world class business and conferencing events, including the world’s most significant forum, the G20 Summit, in 2014. “For BCEC to be awarded the AIPC APEX Award ahead of some of the world’s biggest cities is a remarkable achievement.
“The Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre has been an integral part in the city boosting its reputation as a primary destination for globally recognised conferences and exhibitions.
Daniel Gschwind, Chief Executive of Queensland Tourism Industry Council said: “This outstanding accolade is well-deserved recognition for the consistent professionalism and innovative business approach demonstrated by AEG Ogden.
“A global reputation like that is built over a long period and BCEC has become a world-class asset for this city and for Queensland through its quality infrastructure and its customer service delivery.
“We are fortunate to have BCEC as part of our city’s competitive advantages, particularly to grow the all-important meetings and events market.