Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World. Write Paul an E-mail

Geoff Donaghy to lead AIPC for a second term

WORLD – CEO of the International Convention Centre Sydney, Geoff Donaghy, has been elected president of the International Association of Convention Centres (AIPC) for a second term. The announcement was made at the AIPC Annual Conference in Boston. Donaghy, who is also group director of convention and exhibition centres for AEG Ogden, was the first president of the international association ...

‘No choice’ in Chicago after Illinois suspends bureau budget

AMERICAS – Chicago’s tourism and convention bureau, Choose Chicago, is suspending all foreign sales trips and halting its work with overseas tour operators after the state of Illinois suspended a large swathe of its budget. The bureau has had to take the drastic measures following the suspension of US$7.2m it was due to receive this year from hotel tax revenue. Bureau spokeswoman Meghan Risch said...

ITE continues strategy of diversification as revenues dip in Q3

WORLD – Global events organiser ITE Group has announced a third-quarter dip in profits, but claims results are in line with expectations reflecting challenging conditions in one of its key markets, Russia. The group’s revenue of £58m (US$90.34m), for the three months ending 30 June 2015 (2014: £73m), fell 17% on a like-for-like basis compared to the same period last year. The company is pressing o...

KL’s TenOnCall wins AIPC innovation Award 2015

ASIA – Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre’s TenOnCall (TOC) offering beat 13 finalists to win the 2015 nternational Association of Convention Centres (AIPC) Innovation Award. Receiving the award at the AIPC Award Dinner held in conjunction with the organisation’s 2015 Annual Conference and 57th General Assembly in Boston, USA, recently, deputy general manager, Simon Lomas said: “Winning this pre...

Korean meetings industry stays strong in face of threat from MERS

ASIA – South Korea’s international business events calendar has been largely unaffected by the recent MERS outbreak, the Korea Tourism Organisation claims, in a release that says the threat posed by the disease is subsiding. No major international congresses scheduled for 2015 have been cancelled, says KTO, while events such as June’s International Council of Nurses (ICN) 2015 Conference took plac...

Tarsus says ‘au revoir’ to French connection and ‘Hello’ to emerging markets

EUROPE – Tarsus Group has announced a multi-million dollar deal to sell its French conference and exhibition portfolio, as the group tightens its focus on the US and emerging markets. Magellan VI SAS will buy 100% of Tarsus France Holdings SAS for €9.2m (US$10.18m). Tarsus’s French portfolio includes education, marketing, IT and MICE conferences. It generated €0.9m profit and had gross asset...

QuickMobile introduces event app with Apple Watch integration

AMERICAS – For the first time at a meeting industry event, conference attendees have been able to review their personal schedules on Apple Watch, as well as receive alerts and notifications from event organisers. Meeting and event apps specialist QuickMobile launched, 12 July, what the Vancouver-based company claims is the industry’s first mobile event app with Apple Watch integration....

Record 10,000 gamers show at Minecon 2015 in London

EUROPE – The Minecon 2015 event at Excel London last weekend attracted 10,000 fans of the Minecraft video game. The convention saw Minecraft’s coding team talk about future features of the game. The annual convention began in 2010 in Washington and attracted just 50 people. Game developer and publisher Mojang has since grown the event, from attracting 200 fans in 2011 to Mandalay Bay in Las ...

Tarsus scales up in southeast Asia with new JV

ASIA – Tarsus Group is extending its events reach into southeast Asia by taking a 50% stake in organiser AMB Group, via joint venture, AMB Tarsus Exhibitions (AMBT). The purchase, from AMB Group’s Andrew Siow and Richard Yew, for about US$13m is structured to give the group the potential to buy the remainder of the business. Tarsus officials said the joint venture would complement the London...

Convention centres need to align communities and politicians

AMERICAS – The 2015 edition of global convention centre association AIPC’s Annual Congress, taking place in Boston 5-8 July, underscored the need for community awareness of events at a time when the lines between business event disciplines are increasingly blurred. Opening the event, Boston Mayor Martin J Walsh told delegates the industry was very important to Bostonians, and “certainly impo...

NYC & Company expands Delegate Discount scheme

AMERICAS – New York City’s official marketing, tourism and partnership organisation, NYC & Company, has expanded its Delegate Discount Pass programme for 2015, offering savings at 110 New York City attractions, restaurants and shops. The pass is available to all meeting and convention attendees, exhibitors, meeting planners and event staff, and is valid throughout New York City’s five bo...

THIMUN and World Forum sign five-year contract extension

WORLD – The World Forum and the THIMUN Foundation have signed a five-year contract to continue to run the THIMUN international conference (The Hague International Model United Nations) in the Netherlands capital. The annual conference, which attracts 3,300 participants, will be held again in the World Forum in The Hague from 2016 to 2020. The venue has hosted the THIMUN conference for the pa...