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The annual International Association of Convention Centres (AIPC) survey highlighted the major concerns that global convention centres are faced with. The survey, carried out between April and June 2013, achieved a 65% response rate from centres in 54 countries.

KEY FINDINGS

  • Centres have seen 6-7% revenue growth in the past few years but are anticipating slower growth (1%) for 2013 in the face of ongoing stagnation in economic recovery. European centres are lagging other parts of the world due largely to economic conditions there.
  • Recovering corporate-event business is driving growth in many areas while conventions and exhibitions remain stagnant.
  • Many centres are pursuing alternate revenue streams including event creation, sponsorship, advertising and enhanced services. They are also engaging in more risk sharing with clients to encourage more business.
  • Centres are challenged by rapid change in event formats and explosive growth in technology and connectivity demands, both of which require greater investment in a time of only modest revenue growth.
  • A growing concern this year is the fact that many governments and corporations are restricting meetings participation because of budgetary measures, reflecting a lack of appreciation for their role in economic growth. Many governments are also reducing new investment in facilities at a time when this is required in order to compete effectively.
  • The top concerns noted by centres for future business growth are strong global competition, a weak economic recovery and ongoing high unemployment, slow event business growth, challenges arising from hotel and airline capacity and pricing.