Reed Travel Exhibitions knows how important location is to IBTM America and is doing a great job of taking its annual trade show to key destinations to maximize attendance. IBTM America wrapped up its 2016 event last week at Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Resort in Nashville and will gather at Diplomat Resort & Spa Hollywood, just outside Fort Lauderdale, June 14-16, 2017.
No meeting in Nashville would be complete without attendees experiencing Music City’s legendary Honky Tonks. Then it was all business, with 5,000 one-on-one appointments at Gaylord Convention Center.
Most suppliers were North American, Mexican, Canadian and Caribbean hotel brands, convention centers, incentive destinations, cruise lines and tech companies. Drawing representatives from many of the top U.S. meeting cities, participating CVBs included NYC & Company, Greater Miami CVB, Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Detroit Metro CVB and Greater Fort Lauderdale.
International exhibitors featured Visit Flanders (Belgium), India Tourism and Dubai Business Events.
“We know that any MICE business leads can take up to two to three years to make happen,” says Ishrat Alam, tourist information officer for India Tourism. “It has given us the opportunity to really explain our experiential high end incentive and meetings products face to face. The mutual match appointment system is very good indeed.”
IBTM America Hosted Buyers
The hosted buyers hailed from such companies as American Express, Colgate-Palmolive, National Association of African American Studies, Global Cynergies, Wells Fargo, The International Ecotourism Society and Maritz. Eighty-six percent of the hosted buyers were based in the United States. The international planners came from Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Russia, Spain, Sweden, United Arab Emirates and United Kingdom.
The show floor reflected a focus on technology, including a showcase of emerging technologies, from start-ups and entrepreneurs highlighting new ideas for the industry through live demonstrations.
“I have been to IBTM America for the past three years—it works for me,” says Thomas L Fagan, Jr., from The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. “In 2015, we had 1,300 meetings worldwide. We are looking at events up to five years ahead. It used to be 10 years, but the lead time has now shortened.”