Europe

Austria ramps up for events after Minister steps down

The Austrian government has said it will allow cultural events for up to 100 spectators from 29 May as the country continues emerging from its coronavirus lockdown. The number of spectators permitted will go up to 250 people from July 1, when cinemas will also be able to reopen. And, from 1 August, events for up to 1,000 people could be allowed if organisers present safety measures that meet gover...

Iceland’s Harpa centre set to spring back to action

Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre in Reykjavík, Iceland, is reportedly ready to reopen following closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The venue had to close temporarily due to social distancing measures put in place by the Icelandic government on 16 March. Before this, 2020 was set to be a record year for the conference centre. CEO of Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre, Svanhildur Ko...

Simon Hughes appointed to head BVEP as Michael Hirst steps down

The Business Visits & Events Partnership (BVEP), the umbrella body and advocacy group for the UK’s £70bn events industry, has appointed Simon Hughes as its new Chair, 21 May. Hughes (pictured), previously Vice-Chair, replaces Michael Hirst OBE, who has served as its Chair since the partnership’s formation in 1999 and who will continue to chair the UK Events Industry Board and be a part o...

UK government urged to allow temporary venue at Earls Court

The Earl’s Court Area Action Group, a UK-based campaign group, has called on the British government to bring forward a temporary venue on the Earl’s Court Masterplan site to help rebuild the UK’s economy post Covid-19 and provide additional large event space in London. In letters to the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and the Minister for Tourism, Nigel...

Remote interpreting platform secures CHF1.5m investment from Swiss technology fund

Remote interpreting platform for the events business, Interprefy, has secured an additional CHF1.8m (US$1.83m) in funding  and the company expects the events industry to grow massively despite the impact of the coronavirus as organisers move meetings online. Swiss-based Technologiefonds has injected the latest investment, which comes on top of the existing CHF1.2m Interprefy had previously receive...

#EstoniaIsOpen campaign rekindles conference travel

The Estonian Convention Bureau has officially laid out the nation’s post-crisis welcome mat, announcing the reopening of the local conference sector with a wide-reaching social media campaign. Launched on 15 May, the project entails having each of the ECB’s 36 members submit a creative photo or video under the tagline #EstoniaIsOpen. The material will be published on the ECB’s social media channel...

Steigenberger Hotels to reopen in Germany before the end of May

Deutsche Hospitality has said it will reopen many of its Steigenberger Hotel and Resorts properties in Germany before the end of May. CEO Thomas Willms said: “We have been trialling and revising a new hygiene concept on an ongoing basis over the past few weeks.. final tweaks are being made in order to ensure that the best possible preparations are in place as we get ready to reopen. The whole of t...

New international appointments at The Hague Convention Bureau

The Hague Convention Bureau in the Netherlands has employed two new international sales managers to focus on the city’s specialist markets; including new energy, impact economy, IT & tech and cyber security. The new members of the team are Jeanine Dupigny, who will focus on MICE acquisitions in the new energy and impact economy sectors. She brings knowledge from the industrial development, pet...

Hamburg Messe und Congress appoints new Director of Human Resources

Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH has appointed Harriet Bindert as the new Director of Human Resources, effective immediately. In her new role, Bindert will be leading a team of five, and will be reporting directly to CFO Uwe Fischer. Bindert previously worked at Eppendorf AG as Business Manager HR Professional. She has also worked as Director of Human Resources at Bode Chemie GmbH and Head of HR at...

UK furlough scheme extended until October

The UK job retention scheme will be extended, for four months, until the end of October, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak has confirmed. Addressing the House of Commons, 12 May, the Chancellor confirmed that the level of support to employees will not be reduced but did say employers would be asked to contribute more. The news will bring some relief to UK events businesses which have seen th...

Copenhagen named UNESCO World Capital of Architecture 2023

Copenhagen will be named UNESCO World Capital of Architecture 2023, in addition to hosting the UIA World Congress of Architects in the same year. The title is a part of a joint initiative by UNESCO and Union of the International Architects (UIA), and is assigned to coincide with UIA’s World Congress, every three years. The initiative is aimed at creating new synergies between culture and architect...

Industry professionals should ‘adopt a flexible mindset’ to succeed post-pandemic

Senior Vice-President and CMO of meetings technology provider Cvent, Patrick Smith, has said that event professionals will need to ‘adopt a flexible mindset’ and’ be prepared to adapt and evolve their business practices in order to succeed in a post-pandemic world’. Smith made his comments at PlanetIMEX, 11 May, during his session ‘Adapt, Evolve, Accelerate’, which formed part of EduMonday. He off...