The Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau is to organise its second business events industry conference, BE @ Penang. Themed BE EMPOWERED, the conference will take place on 7 & 8 December 2017 at the Setia SPICE Convention Centre, Penang.
The first edition, held in December 2016 at The Wembley, Penang, attracted 120 delegates from the Penang business events industry, along with industry professionals based in Kuala Lumpur, Johor and Singapore who had organised events in Penang.
BE @ Penang 2017’s theme of BE EMPOWERED follows last year’s theme of BE ENGAGED.
Delegates answered the call during last year’s conference to form a ‘Team Penang’ and this year, the conference aims to move things along and encourage the industry players to communicate, collaborate, and capture businesses for Penang. “Being the first Penang homegrown business events industry conference, it is vital for BE @ Penang to be seen as the benchmark for organising meetings in Penang,” said PCEB CEO Ashwin Gunasekeran. He was speaking at a press conference to launch this year’s conference.
The bureau notes the average business traveller spends an average of RM7,000 (US$1,640) compared to RM2,000 spent by the leisure traveller.
A PCEB industry report released in Jan 2017, claimed Penang hosted 1,251 business events in 2016, with an estimated economic impact of RM808m.
“The progression of Penang as an important second tier destination in the Malaysian business events sector is taking place parallel with the development of infrastructure in the state,” added chief minister of Penang Lim Guan Eng.
“With the completion of the RM350m Setia SPICE Convention Centre together with the refurbished SPICE Arena and the slated RM 450m Penang Waterfront Convention Centre (estimated completion: 2021), Penang will be able to host business events of larger scales, and multiple events at one time.”
Currently Penang is able to host events for up to 15,000 delegates, as illustrated by the conference held at SPICE in May this year, the minister added.
Headlining this year’s BE conference is Roy Sheppard, a specialist international conference facilitator/moderator. Joining him are industry experts Gracie Geckie, CEO of Place Borneo, and Fu Kei Cheong and Rahul Bharadwaj of Anderes Fourdy. Among the topics that will be covered at BE @ Penang 2017 are technology in business events, gearing for the future, effective bidding, attracting association meetings, and marketing to Europe.