Business rises sharply at the Valencia Conference Centre in 2017 and its portfolio of future events is becoming more robust
The Valencia Conference Centre’s turnover in 2017 rose by 5.4% compared to the previous year. Last year, 80,766 visitors attended a total of 101 events which resulted in a total of around 67,000 overnight stays in the city. Congresses and conventions accounted for 74% of the centre’s business, and three out of every four delegates were national or international visitors.
A comparison of these figures with those of 2016 reveals that in addition to more events and participants, there was also a noticeable recovery in corporate sector events, which were hit hard in the years of the economic recession. In 2017, the number of conventions went up by 125% whilst the numbers of delegates attending them rose by 60%. Some of the companies that chose the venue to hold their conventions or shareholders’ meetings were Bankia, Vittoria Assicurazioni, Mercadona and Consum.
On the meetings front, the most significant congresses held during the year were the 15th Conference of the European Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics, the 14th International Symposium on Myelodysplastic Syndromes, the Congress of the European Accounting Association (EAA), 28th Congress of the Spanish Society of Anatomical Pathology (SEAP/IAP), the AECOC Consumer Congress, the National Congress of the Spanish Society for Oral Surgery (SECIB) and the 9th National Congress of the Spanish Vaccinology Association. In addition, the National Congress of the Spanish Neurology Society (SEN) was once again held at the Centre in 2017. This event has been staged in Valencia since 2014, and has brought over 11,000 specialists to Valencia in these four meetings.
These figures are the result of conscientious sales efforts made to attract business, leading to a sharp rise in the portfolio of events to be staged at the venue in the short and medium-term. According to the Managing Director, Sylvia Andrés, "We have to go back nine years to see similar figures to those achieved in 2017. By the end of the year, the number of confirmed events for the next two years had risen by 80% and 50% compared to the same period last year.”
A large number of relationship marketing activities were held during the year and 356 national and international sales visits and 56 inspection visits were organised. Likewise, team members attended 17 industry events, including meetings with organisations representing the main event-tourism players, workshops and trade fairs, such as IMEX in Frankfurt, IBTM in Barcelona and FITUR in Madrid. As a result of these and other actions, the Centre presented 49 new bids for congresses and conventions, and won 25.
The technological revolution carried out at the Centre, implemented by the Valencia City Council, was completed in 2017. In addition to maintaining the venue’s leading position, these investments have generated energy savings of 208,000 kWh compared to the previous year. The Centre’s environmental commitment in adopting these measures has been rewarded with the most efficient grade for CO2 emissions in the building’s energy performance certificate.
The forecasts for 2018 are very optimistic, with 86% of business consisting of national and international events. At present, 30 congresses and conventions have been confirmed. These include the conventions of Grupo Chiesi and the multinational Nestlé, the 45th European Calcified Tissue Society Congress, the Congress of the European Society for Vascular Surgery, the 12th National Conference on Pressure Ulcers and Chronic Wounds, and the ESCCA 2018 Conference.
Future events at the Valencian venue include 43 congresses and conventions, scheduled as far ahead as 2022. These events will attract over 35,000 delegates and will result in more than 100,000 overnight stays in the city.
“We would like to highlight the positive figures and their increase compared to the previous year, but most of all, we are very pleased about the excellent forecasts for 2018,” said Sandra Gómez, Chair of the Conference Centre’s Board of Directors. “They are in part due to the City Council’s solid backing and the €1,800,000 investment it has put into improving the facility, making it a more competitive and more sustainable venue”.
About the Valencia Conference Centre’s 20th Anniversary
Since it was opened in 1998, the flagship building designed by Norman Foster has played host to 2,700 events and two million visitors, resulting in two million overnight stays in the city.
The direct and indirect economic impact of the activities held at the Centre is estimated at €1.1 billion, over 36 times the amount it cost to build.