IBTM Americas closes an edition full of optimism

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IBTM Americas closes an edition full of optimism
Source: Travel2latam
August 26, 2022

The event has been a true reflection of the recovery of the MICE segment in the region

With a strengthened, united and optimistic Meetings Industry due to the notorious recovery of the sector, IBTM Americas 2022 concluded. Close to 10,000 appointments, around 1,000 million dollars in business opportunities and an economic benefit of more than 100 million pesos was the result of the week of activities in which around 4,000 people participated. More than 450 exhibiting and co-exhibiting companies, 520 national and international buyers, 2,600 visitors, associations, sponsors and the media gathered to experience the dynamism of the events, renew their energy, reconnect, do business and be inspired, all under the motto Feel the events' energy.

During the inauguration, Jorge Vazquez Valdés, general director of Tourism Product Innovation of the Federal Tourism Secretariat; Dan Chávez, Innovation and Knowledge Leader for Sustainable Events; Alejandro Ramírez, President of the Mexican Council of the Meetings Industry (COMIR); Sheriff Karamat, PCMA President & Chair Elect EIC; Michelle Fridman Hirsch, Secretary of Tourism of Yucatan; Nathalie Desplas, Secretary of Tourism of Mexico City; and David Hidalgo, director of IBTM Americas. After a ceremony full of thanks to all the actors in the industry, the inaugural flag was given and the ribbon cutting of the event was followed by a visit to the pavilion of the guest destination of this edition, Yucatán Meetings. Among those attending the inaugural event,  

For his part, Sheriff Karamat, PCMA President & Chair Elect EIC, highlighted the importance of working together to make the Meetings Industry more sustainable and inclusive. "The entrepreneurs gathered here have the power to grow the economy and transform events, this is the time and a wonderful space to start doing business," he concluded.

Michelle Fridman Hirsch, Secretary of Tourism of Yucatan, said she felt very honored to represent the first state of the Mexican Republic to be a guest destination of IBTM Americas. “Today gathered here we are fulfilling the dream of being back to grow an industry that leaves economic benefits in all sectors and a contribution of 1.5% of GDP. In Yucatan alone we have expanded the offer with 2 venues, infrastructure that exceeds 15,000 rooms, security, connectivity, high-quality services and a great tourist offer, which has helped reactivate congresses, conventions, symposiums, forums and incentives throughout the world. condition. Things are going well, but they can be better, so let's continue to team up, to achieve more together, ”she commented.

To end and give way to the inaugural declaration, the Secretary of Tourism of Mexico City, Dr. Nathalie Desplas, commented that, despite the great blow experienced by the pandemic, a great moment is also being experienced for the transformation. Tourists have changed their way of traveling for more sustainable experiences and there are new profiles, such as digital nomads. "We want to continue strengthening the community of professionals in the Meetings Industry, I predict the best of successes and an extraordinary generation of business", she concluded.

For two days, the high-level forum, Meetings & Events Transformation (MET), was held with the aim of establishing agreements, collaboration programs and alliances between the leaders of the public and private sectors to build and co-create collaboration opportunities in favor of the transformation of events and meetings. “The perfect marriage: wedding tourism and DMOs. How to get the most of this juicy cake?”; “Social & Economic Transformation” and “Priorities and alliance between DMOs and the public sector: balancing opportunities”, were the topics addressed by the invited experts.

At the same time, the 2nd Latin American Meeting of DMCs was presented for the second year with the participation of AMDEMAC, as well as the Event Design Conference, which brought together personalities such as Sean Fitzgerald, Gay Games and Mónica Sánchez from Guadalajara; Will Curran, Founder & Chief Event Einstein.

Also during the Sustainable Mindset Talks forum, attendees learned about new and creative ideas for organizing events with minimal environmental impact and betting on more equitable societies.

Focused on associations and as an educational program, the first edition of Meetings Labs by ICCA was held. Participants included Gregg Talley, President and CEO of Talley Management Group; Virginia Arana, director of Meetings at Yucatán Meetings, and Alejandra Hernández Zita, sustainability consultant for the Global Destination Sustainability Movement.

On the first day of the Event Design Conference, high-level speakers were presented, such as Guillermo Perezbolde, founder and CEO of Mente Digital; Johnnie White, CEO and Executive Vice President of ASA (American Society of Appraisers); Eva García Cuervo, founder and general director of Chef of the Year Mexico; Víctor Castañeda, director of Imagic Group MX (presented by Allenamenti Speakers), among others.

The following day, the Pharma Congress by ASPID took place, where panelists presented "Digital Marketing Pharma 4.0", an exclusive program for the medical and pharmaceutical industry, which will provide an overview of the latest marketing regulations and success stories of their application.

On the other hand, at the Romance Congress presented by ABC LATAM, the presentations revolved around the latest trends in destination weddings and the romance industry.

On the second day of the Event Design Conference, MPI and Allenamenti Speakers presented David Gómez, director of Bien Pensado. Additionally, the Allenamenti Speakers Bureau presented Millán Ludeña, protagonist in the documentary film From core to sun, and Freddy Ravel, musician and performer, and Grammy Award-nominated speaker. 

The Encore team, experts in production, technology and creativity, offered the keynote speech “The creative journey. From the client to the execution”, in which they talked about how the way events are planned has changed, because now the conceptualization of these must go further and look for a differentiator that catches the audience.

The Sport Congress encompassed a series of conferences dedicated to event organizers interested in the sports field. The special guest was Enrique Aquino Busquets, former athlete and Olympic medalist, director of META Sports. Also participating in another panel were Olympic swimmer Patricia Kohlmann Hackl; Israel Ayala Piña, Marketing and Commercialization Manager of the Diablos Rojos baseball team; Mr. Carlos González, president of the Mexican Tennis Federation AC; and Rafael Moctezuma, president of Warriors for Mexico.

Likewise, other important industry associations joined the program by integrating events that simultaneously suspended the activities of IBTM Americas, as was the case of the Association of Bureaus of Latin America and the Caribbean with the Latin American Meeting of Destination Organizations, MBTA with its educational day for Travel Managers and MPI with the MPI CAMPUS and RENDEZVOUS.

“This edition of IBTM Americas has shown once again that events are part of the human essence, which is why the recovery of the Meetings Industry has reached between 80% and 90% this year, even among specialists in the sector. it is perceived that the levels of 2019 have reached 100%. The optimism does not end there, if the growth trend continues, 2023 would no longer be the year of recovery, but rather the year of growing again from the second half of that year, which is great news for all of us who are part of this community”, commented David Hidalgo, director of IBTM Americas.

Without a doubt, the partners and friends of the industry will continue to strengthen themselves and work together to achieve these figures. “The objective is very clear, to be a space for meeting, generating business and training for the industry in Latin America. We hope to have contributed to entrepreneurs consolidating businesses and new sources of income that will help them achieve the goals of 2022 to start 2023 on the right foot. We are fulfilling a dream, this IBTM Americas was part of a new era of the Industry. of Meetings and the gratitude goes to all the partners that compose it, authorities, secretaries of Tourism and professionals who make this event a point of reference and meeting point”, concluded the director.

IBTM Americas also recognized the efforts of the exhibitors to show their offers during the event and named Panama (international destination) and Morelos (national destination) as the two best stands of this edition. On the other hand, Totonal-Sustrai was awarded the "Agent of Change" badge thanks to its efforts in sustainability during the two days of the exhibition.

Finally, Yucatan made the post office pass to Guadalajara as the guest destination of IBTM Americas 2023. Michelle Fridman, Secretary of Tourism Development of Yucatan, David Hidalgo, director of IBTM Americas and Gustavo Staufert, director of OFVC, were present at the event. Guadalajara. The event concluded with the presentation of the folkloric ballet from Yucatan and the traditional mariachi from Guadalajara.

Mexico, tourism and the Meetings industry are ready for a great alliance to help this activity return to its normal course sooner than expected and, above all, to lay the foundations so that before 2025 it can recover its energy and impact.


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