• Cyril McAree

Fáilte Ireland Secures Major Business Conferences Worth €162m To Irish Shores

There’s now currently over 360 conferences representing more than 117,000 international delegates worth €162m confirmed for Ireland – that’s according to the latest Q3 Business Tourism figures announced by Fáilte Ireland today, which show that the tourism development authority has already, in the first three quarters of this year, surpassed the amount of business won for the full year in 2017.

The Q3 figures also show strong growth in the regions, with Fáilte Ireland supporting the conversion of a further €31m for locations outside of Dublin through Regional Convention Bureaux in Shannon, Cork, Kerry and Galway.

Fáilte Ireland is looking to drive these numbers even higher over the coming days as its Meet in Ireland team hits Las Vegas for the annual IMEX America event. IMEX is one of the largest worldwide exhibitions for incentive travel, meetings and events which is attended by over 3,200 suppliers and 5,500 meeting planners who organise international meetings, incentives, conferences and events.

Over the coming days in Las Vegas, Fáilte Ireland will directly pitch to 230 overseas buyers through targeted presentations, as well as facilitating over 85 one-to-one meetings for Irish trade. The 34 members of Irish trade joining Fáilte Ireland on the Meet in Ireland stand also have an additional 470 appointments confirmed with international buyers over the course of the exhibition.

Speaking at IMEX America, Fáilte Ireland’s CEO Paul Kelly emphasised how the tourism agency intends to leverage the strong potential of Business Tourism to generate greater tax revenue and employment for Ireland over the coming years. He also outlined how Business Tourism has the ability to generate significant jobs and revenue for the regions as well as Dublin, which has traditionally benefitted from this sector.

Paul Kelly said:

“Tourism is a significant contributor to Ireland’s wellbeing, both socially and economically. It supports 240,000 jobs and also generates €7.2 billion in revenue and €1.7 billion in Exchequer earnings – the equivalent of over €1,000 for every household in Ireland. In the Business Tourism sector, we believe there’s huge potential for future growth and the business we’ve won so far this year, exceeding the total figure for 2017 already, is testament to that.

“I’m particularly excited about the potential of Business Tourism regionally. Conferences and business events are benefitting regions outside Dublin but they could play a much bigger part – and this will be a strategic focus of our work over the coming years and we’re hoping to convert even more business for the regions here at IMEX America this week.”

Speaking about the importance of representing Ireland at events like IMEX America, Fáilte Ireland’s Head of Commercial Development Paul Mockler, added:“Thanks to Ireland’s amazing hospitality, ease of access, venues and leading industries, Ireland manages to punch well above its weight in winning business events and we have been seeking out every possible opportunity to bring even more big events to Irish shores. There are sound business reasons to do so – every delegate is worth more than €1,600 to the Irish economy and I’m delighted that, so far this year, we’ve secured €162m worth of business for future years, in both the capital and the regions, with much more in the pipeline.

“Events like IMEX are a key opportunity to get major overseas meetings, conferences and events booked in for the years ahead. We have top-class Irish industry joining us, and I have no doubt they will give these buyers countless reasons to book meetings in Ireland.”

#FailteIreland #IMEX

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