UAE venue group charts record growth in events during 2011January 16, 2012 By: Ian Whiteling, Joint Editorin Chief
Recent statistics released by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) revealed that the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre held 56% more events last year than during 2010 – 231 in total, up from 148.
This performance was the best across ADNEC’s three venues, with ExCeL London and the Al Ain Convention Centre also contributing to a record year for the United Arab Emirates’ venue group. Together the venues welcomed 733 events – an increase of 18% over 2010. Events hosted at ExCeL London also saw a significant increase over 2010, growing 17% to 284.
“The growing number and scale of the events we host is a clear signal of our ambitions and rising prominence in the events industry,” said Ali Saeed Bin Harmal Al Dhaheri, ADNEC’s managing director.
“In 2010, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre made great strides towards its goal of becoming the most successful exhibition, conference and events centre in the Gulf region. ADNEC is raising the profile of Abu Dhabi internationally and playing a key role in boosting the volume of business tourism to the emirate. The ADNEC team is moving forward and developing the company in line with Abu Dhabi’s strategic 2030 vision.”
Record year: ADNEC grows events by over 50% in 2011
Highlights of 2011 included a record-breaking international defence show, IDEX at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, and the launch of the co-located NAVDEX, along with the completion of the Capital Gate tower, Abu Dhabi’s iconic new leaning tower, which is owned and developed by ADNEC. The tower houses the 189-room, luxury five-star Hyatt Capital Gate hotel, which opened on 21 December 2011, and 15,000 square metres of office space.
Meanwhile, the staging of World Skills was ExCeL’s largest event to date. Taking over the entire venue, including all halls and meeting spaces, the event brought together 150,000 people from across the globe. This made it the most successful World Skills in the event’s 50-year history. Last year also saw the opening of the 252-room ADNEC-owned Aloft London Excel, boosting hotel room capacity at ExCeL to 1,400, while the venue also won a number of industry awards.
Looking to the year ahead, the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre will be hosting Abu Dhabi’s largest ever association convention to date in February with the World Ophthalmology Congress 2012, expected to bring in more than 12,000 delegates. Also taking place in the first quarter is: World Future Energy Summit from 16-19 January, the world’s foremost annual meeting for the renewable energy and environment industry; International Security National and Resilience (ISNR) Abu Dhabi from 19-21 March, bringing together the entire spectrum of homeland security issues; and the Gulf Incentive Business Travel and Meetings exhibition (GIBTM) from 26-28 March.
At ExCeL London, the highlight will be the seven Olympic events and six Paralympic events that will be staged at the venue as part of the London 2012 Games this summer.