Manchester makes £573m from meetings and business tourism

Conferences and business tourism generated
£573m for Manchester’s economy during 2009 according to a
study published today (20 October).

The Conference Value
& Volume Study
, funded by the Northwest
Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and commissioned by Visit Manchester,
explained the headline figure represented the income to businesses in Greater
Manchester from the 4.2m delegates that came to the city and the 56,900 business
events they were attending. Of those delegates, two million stayed overnight.

The survey, carried out by TEAM Tourism
Consulting across conference venues in Greater Manchester, found that corporate
business events accounted for 55 per cent of the total business, followed by
government/public sector events (32%), national association conferences (11%)
and international association conferences (2%).

“The study shows just how big a contribution
the city’s conference and business tourism sector makes to the local economy,”
said Visit Manchester MD, Paul Simpson. “As the organisation responsible for
attracting conference and business events to the city, it is important for us to
know the value of the industry so that we can benchmark the city against other
conference hubs.

“There have been major developments in
Greater Manchester’s conference product over recent years, in terms of
developing the infrastructure and support services that organisers expect and
we’re confident the city region will continue to generate a significant economic
benefit from this sector in the future,” he adds.

Director of Tourism at the NWDA, Nick
Brooks-Sykes, said: “The contribution of business and conference events to the
regional visitor economy cannot be underestimated. Business tourism presents a
number of wider economic benefits, such as increased visitor spend and
high-value return visits.

“Thanks to continued investment in Manchester
Central, new facilities like The Point and University Place and ongoing investment in
hotel accommodation, Manchester is well placed to attract even more
of these lucrative markets,” he adds.

Paul Colston

Author

Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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