Conventa, a tradeshow for the South East European meetings industry, exceeded all expectations after starting on Jan. 22 in Slovenia.
The sixth edition attracted the largest number of international meeting planners in its history. Congress destinations presented their highest number yet. Organizers recorded a record number of pre-arranged meetings between hosted buyers and exhibitors, more FAM trips than ever were available to hosted buyers and the educational program received new segments and has been extended over all Conventa days.
“For the organization of a sales meeting, you will spend on average at least 60 minutes, with no time invested in market research and other time invested in finding customers. According to the survey, Conventa saves you on average at least 60 hours of valuable time that would otherwise be spent searching for contacts and organizing meetings with potential new clients,” said Gorazd Čad, director, Go.Mice and Toleranca, and marketing and technical organizer, Conventa.
The tradeshow opened its doors at GR-Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre. This year, the show gave meeting providers from across the South East European border the opportunity to do presentations while exhibitors got a chance to strengthen their position in the congress market and present their novelties to hosted buyers. Meeting providers came from different countries, such as Slovenia, Austria, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, Hungary, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Italy, Romania and Turkey.
Approximately 3,158 meetings were pre-arranged before the start of the show. In the past, exhibitors completed on average 22 pre-scheduled meetings. Organizers are predicting this number will reach 25 meeting per exhibitor for 2014.
Additional effort was put into the search for international meeting planners who are genuinely interested in the region, which paid off, according to show officials. Compared to last year, the number of international meeting planners at Conventa rose by at least 25 percent. This means the tradeshow will host over 200 hosted buyers from as many as 25 countries and over 100 national and regional buyers. Moreover, 90 percent of hosted buyers are first-timers while 10 percent will be re- visiting the show.