Mayor of Amsterdam, Femke Halsema, and deputy mayor, Victor Everhardt, kicked off the return of business events to the city at the RAI Amsterdam Convention Centre, 26 August.
The mayor and deputy mayor were joined by Paul Riemens, RAI CEO, and Tracey Davies, president of Money 20/20, a key event hosted at the venue for the payments fintech and financial services industry, as they officially opened the 2021/2022 congress season. Halsema commented: “I am very excited that business events will take place in our city again. We are ready to receive, organise and facilitate international events in the city and the RAI.”
Halsema added: “Amsterdam has been an international city for a long time. We have a tradition in welcoming guests from all over the world. We are proud of international trades, innovation and intellect. I think Money20/20 and a lot of the activities of RAI Amsterdam and other venues in our city are in the forefront of transforming our city. These visitors help our city become more of an innovative, curious city that we are proud of”.
Until 2019, conferences at RAI Amsterdam alone were generating an annual turnover of approximately €690m and employment of 6,300 FTEs. With the Amsterdam conference sector shut down for a year and a half, the region of Amsterdam missed a revenue of €1bn.
Riemens concluded: “Our focus in the last year and a half was not only to organise safe events within the RAI. It was and is on the whole value chain. We support our visitors, exhibitors, suppliers and organisers in the total customer journey. Especially in these times, our organisation is focused on adding that value and making a difference not only in Amsterdam, but also internationally.”