With business tourism events currently worth £1.9bn annually to the Scottish economy, leaders from the country’s conference and events sector have launched a campaign to encourage Glasgow’s key business influencers to take a more proactive role in bringing major business events to Scotland.
The new Think Scotland, Think Conference (TSTC) initiative is designed as a fresh strand of business tourism advocacy that will engage directly with commercial and private business on an unprecedented scale.
Sectoral leaders in Glasgow will meet at the Glasgow Science Centre on 3 June, for an event hosted by Judy Rae, chair of Business Tourism for Scotland (BTfS) and head of corporate events at the venue. The Scottish Council for Development & Industry (SCDI) is partnering for the initiative.
The TSTC campaign is targeting growing business tourism by £400m (21%) to £2.3bn by 2020.
The campaigners claim to have the public sector lined up in support, with agencies such as Scottish Enterprise and VisitScotland using their networks at home and abroad to generate potential event enquiries.
Said Rae: “Business tourism is about more than tourism, it’s an economic driver that brings substantial and far reaching benefits to the wider region. With TSTC we are directly engaging with business leaders, simply asking them to consider putting Glasgow and Scotland forward as the next host location for their organisation’s next annual conference, teambuilding or incentive event.”
Danny Cusick, a sector director at Scottish Enterprise said: “It was recently estimated by Glasgow City Marketing Bureau that business tourism has boosted the city’s economy by £1.2bn during the last 10 years. It’s a terrific achievement and one we can effectively build on.”
“We will spread the message that Scotland has the facilities, the drive and the capabilities to deliver world class business events. TSTC will help maximise our recent investments in some of our key conferencing assets such as the SSE Hydro and the Glasgow Science Centre supporting the tourism industry to deliver its ambitious growth targets.”
TSTC events are running throughout the summer, visiting Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee, Perth, Dumfries, Aviemore, Inverness, Stirling, Aberdeen and Fife