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April 16, 2008

Eventia and BACD in discussion over merger

The Boards of Eventia and the British Association of Conference Destinations (BACD) are discussing the possibility of a merger, which has the potential to create a powerful organisation that would benefit the entire industry. And each board is working on a proposition that will be put forward to members to vote upon shortly.

The arguments for combining the resources of these two major industry bodies are powerful. Eventia and BACD already offer a range of training and support options through a variety of educational and networking events – benefits that would be greatly enhanced if offered through a single major industry group. Each association also has strong ties to Government. Speaking with a united voice would only strengthen the impact of messages put forward, raising the profile and the voice of the industry as a whole.

Downie: real synergy in terms of what our two organisations do

Currently, the BACD exists to help British destinations generate conference business through a range of marketing activities, information sharing, collaboration and education. With a higher proportion of UK-managed events remaining in the UK, a joining of the two groups would mean that British destinations, in particular, can be promoted even more positively to the wider business community.

Commenting on the proposed merger, BACD chairman Hamish Reid said: “One of BACD’s major roles is to build business for Britain, increasing the volume and value of business being won by members. Another important aim is to act as a cohesive force and clear voice within business tourism, forging strategic alliances with like-minded organisations nationally and internationally and playing a leading role in the future development of the conference industry. The possibility of a merger between Eventia and BACD is a natural progression for us and offers enormous potential.”

Meanwhile, Izania Downie, executive director of Eventia, added: “There is a real synergy in terms of what our two organisations do. Both Eventia and BACD have dedicated memberships and committed boards that are both forward-looking and flexible, and our individual skills also complement each other well. I am looking forward to working with BACD to create a united, trusted and influential industry association. Joining these two unique groups together presents amazing possibilities.”

Combining the talents of these two organisations would appear to offer the highest level of support to a growing industry now encompassing an ever–widening sphere of activities, clients, agencies and technologies. The Eventia and BACD directors and boards are committed to continuing the dialogue and to maximising the potential of working together.

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