Conventions and Incentives New Zealand’s (CINZ) two-day trade exhibition championing the country’s business events industry wraps up today, with many international buyers keen to book New Zealand for future events.
“We have hosted a high-quality contingent of international buyers and media at MEETINGS 2018 who are ready come to New Zealand for large events, as well as for bespoke incentive travel,” says CINZ Chief Executive Sue Sullivan.
“Event organisers are always looking for something truly different, and we have shown them New Zealand is a stunning learning and networking environment. We can offer the whole package with great venues, exciting activities, unique culture, service, food and wine.
“The quality of our exhibitors and their innovation stands has resulted in overwhelmingly positive feedback and have collectively held over 6000 meetings with potential clients and will be leaving MEETINGS with strong business leads to follow up,” she says.
Conference and incentive organisers have been impressed by the myriad of experiences on offer in regional New Zealand. Australian organisers were given the opportunity to explore eight regions before and after MEETINGS, while international buyers are being hosted throughout the regions after MEETINGS.
Ashlin Fisher, first time buyer from Hardware and Building Traders in NSW Australia was impressed by the high standard of exhibitors. “It was really beneficial to find a broad range of suppliers together under one roof. Before MEETINGS, the Auckland Convention Bureau famil was fantastic chance to walk the city and experience everything from beat-boxing to ballerinas and lunch on stage at the historic Civic theatre.”
Renee Bennett Director of Encanta Event Management from Western Australia says she aimed to book all next year’s events in one hit at MEETINGS.
“There’s a real sense of coming together as a country and as regions at MEETINGS. Rather than competing, they are collaborating. It was exciting to meet local organisers, and to see innovative start-ups like Table Hub launching at MEETINGS.”
Camilla Palamo from Settlement Services International in Sydney and Tamara Vermeend from SMSF Association in Adelaide both took the opportunity to spend a week in New Zealand for MEETINGS. They visited Queenstown on the MEETINGS’ weekend familiarisation before heading to the Auckland exhibition.
“For me it was a chance to refresh, revisit and renew my knowledge of Queenstown,” Tamara said.
“As a first-time visitor to Queenstown, this was the perfect opportunity to experience the destination through my clients’ eyes, and it truly delivered,” Camilla said.
New Zealand International Convention Centre (NZICC) had a strong presence at MEETINGS 2018, Prue Daly, NZICC Director of Sales said MEETINGS’ visitors were all impressed by the high quality offerings from the New Zealand business events community on show to the global industry. “There’s a real energy and excitement for the new infrastructure coming online.”
Sarah Yeates, representing Northland region said the region had collaborated with a finely-tuned focus on Māori culture. “Our offerings have been amazingly well-received. Everyone is looking for something truly memorable. Our partners like Footprints Waipoua and Waitangi Treaty Grounds are experiences, rather than products. People get fully immersed, and feel moved by the stories we have been bringing to life on our stand at MEETINGS.”
Christchurch Airport hosted a lounge and meeting area at MEETINGS for the third year in a row. Scott Callaway, General Manager Trade Development at Christchurch Airport said this year buyers who have visited Christchurch in the last year have been excited by their experiences and are wanting to bring people back.
“Christchurch’s new central city is really emerging, with Te Pae opening in 2020 as its focal point, and we are delighted to see strong business flowing back to Canterbury,” he said.