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May 25, 2008

IAPCO members report 18% growth in meetings business

Members of the International Association of Professional Congress Organisers (IAPCO) enjoyed a bumper year of growth in 2007, according to the results of the latest annual activity survey by the association.

Last year saw an 18% growth in the meetings and exhibition business managed by IAPCO professional conference organisers (POCs). Between them, IAPCO members organised almost 4,000 meetings, attracting 1,798,000 delegates, and featuring approximately 492,000 square metres of exhibition space.

The survey showed that an increasing proportion of IAPCO members organised more than 100 events last year – 22%, up from 15% in last year’s survey. This growth in members’ activities matched the growth of their clients.

Furthermore, given that every delegate spends approximately €1,620 in attending an event, the survey shows that the economic impact of the meetings managed by IAPCO members is of the order of €2.9 billion.

The nature of IAPCO members’ business had not changed from 2006, with the events comprising 49% association, 41% corporate, and 10% governmental meetings. However, the latest survey does demonstrate the increasingly global nature of IAPCO members’ activities, with 65% acting as international and/or national core PCOs.

This highlights the continuity in members’ business, reflecting the trust in which IAPCO members are held by their clients, and is probably the result of stringent application of IAPCO’s Quality Policy over the past four decades.

Finally, the survey showed that IAPCO members are increasingly forming strategic partnerships with their clients, with 56% of members declaring that they also act as association management companies (AMCs).

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