London works for business tourism, say event consortia

London venue consortia The Westminster Collection (TWC) and Unique Venues of London (UVL) say that the corporate sector is shining for business despite a reduction in bookings taken from the private sector.

The consortia, which between them boast a combined venue turnover of £161m, have worked together since 2008 to survey their real time business tourism figures and claim the 2010-11 findings are much improved upon previous years.

A press release, 13 July, calls for governing authorities in London to “heavily promote” the capital as the leading destination for business travel, conferences and events. TWC and UVL claim 46 per cent of their venues surveyed now report a revenue increase, some by as much as 70 per cent.
“The corporate sector shone,” they say, “with a 78 per cent vote as the most profitable market for business tourism”.

Corporate bookings, the consortia predict, will also be the strongest performer for 2011-12.
Advanced bookings year-on-year for TWC and UVL rose by as much as 30 per cent, the joint statement claims.

René Dee, TWC Chief Executive, said: “Since the London business tourism initiative was established in 2008 our city experienced an economic meltdown. Despite this formidable setback, London conference and event venues at The Westminster Collection and Unique Venues of London have not only survived but actually grown in the most adverse circumstances. 

“Our positive findings prove London’s business tourism space is one of great value for our capital city and not to be ignored.”

Dee added that business tourism needed to be pushed forward by bodies such as London and Partners, Westminster City Council, The Mayor’s Office business tourism groups.

Lisa Hatswell, Chairman of UVL and Sales and Corporate Events Manager of EDF Energy London Eye, said the results from the consortia’s survey were encouraging.

“At the height of the downturn, there was a significant drop in corporate business, and seeing it return and also climb to such a degree is fantastic news for the industry.”
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Paul Colston


Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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