More than 400 delegates took the opportunity to reconnect with old friends and make some new ones as well as learning about new products, changes and inspirational stories from keynote speakers, Sir John Kirwan, Lisa O’Neill and Cam Calkoen.
There was a real buzz with many operators reporting a strong finish to 2020 and lots of bookings and further interest in 2021 and 2022.
Shelley Cunningham of CD Event management says she has almost one big event a month on between May and November 2021 – spanning the Hemp Expo, Bus and Coach Conference, a building suppliers event and a childcare related conference.
‘I am quoting for two more as well and they are all big numbers.’
Stu Robertson, of Team Up Events, says he has been occupied primarily by virtual events, but in-person activity is coming back. ‘Mainly it’s been staff away days, offsite team building, that sort of thing. The feeling is that multi-day corporate conferences will start coming back around February – March next year.’ He says 2021 won’t be 2019. ‘But it will be a lot better than 2020.’
Kim Herd, Venture Travel & Events, says she had a group of 57 top sellers on Waiheke last month and will be organising an event for 45 at the Hilton in Taupo mid-December. She is looking forward to having groups in the South Island next year and has a small group booked for the Chatham Islands in April.
Looking ahead to 2021 the Business Events Industry Aotearoa’s Meetings tradeshow will be held in Auckland in June and the annual conference in the Hawke’s Bay in October.