YE AR V NUMBER 10 BIANNUAL OCT 2017 > MAR 2018 10 €
ANDREA FAFLÍKOVÁ: PRESIDENT OF THE BEA WORLD AWARDS JURY CO-CREATION AND EVENTS UNLIKELY MEETINGS AND INCENTIVES DESTINATIONS
OWNER Estação Livre . Comunicação Rua da Fábrica Social, s/n 4000-201 Porto . Portugal +351 223 395 624 email@example.com www.eventpointinternational.com DIRECTOR Rui Ochôa [firstname.lastname@example.org] EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Cláudia Coutinho de Sousa [email@example.com] NEWSROOM Cláudia Coutinho de Sousa Maria João Leite [firstname.lastname@example.org] DIRECTOR OF SALES Filipe Silva [email@example.com] TRANSLATION Diana Reis Marques COOPERATING WITH THIS EDITION Alexandra Noronha Bernardo Corrêa de Barros Hélder Pinto Miguel Perdigão GRAPHIC DESIGN Norma Design [firstname.lastname@example.org]
CL ÁUDIA COUTINHO DE SOUSA
Co-Create! The advantages of co-creation are recognised by most of us. How is the event’s industry reacting to this new trend? Take a look at some of our tips. Speaking about tips, you must read our guide on how to make an event last. In this edition we look at what’s new on some of our Portuguese destinations, but not only. Macao and Brazil are also featured. Absolutely not to miss is our take on some of the unlikely destinations for meetings and events. As Porto will be the host of the Bea World, in November, we interviewed the president of the jury. Andrea Faflíková tells us some interesting things about how she sees the industry. And there is much more to read. Enjoy it!
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Table Of Contents 04 Advertorial: Benfica Events 06 What’s New In Lisboa 08 Events: IT&CM Asia 10 Incentives 14 Cascais Invests In Events? Evidently, by Bernardo Corrêa De Barros 16 Venues: AIA 18 Bleisure: Florianópolis 20 Five Reasons To Take Your Incentive Trip To Mozambique 21 Focus On: Macao 22 Event Factories - A Creativity Mission!, by Miguel Perdigão 24 Interview: Andrea Faflíková 28 Radar 32 Promoting Engagement At An Event: Some Tips, by Hélder Pinto 34 Unlikely Meetings And Incentives Destinations 41 Company And Services Index
Memorable Experiences With Benfica The Sport Lisboa e Benfica Events Department has a multidisciplinary team with extensive experience in organising all kinds of projects. We are available to provide a comprehensive service in organising events, fully developed by our team. What sets us apart from the competition are our facilities, it's the "smell of grass" and the "thrill of football" - moments lived in the Sport Lisboa e Benfica stadium bring a great motivational load, carried to the brands which visit us. To this thrill of emotion, we add the best suppliers in the market for the wide range of services we offer to our customer. We work with the best and carry this level of demand to all events we host. You can contact us to host galas, teambuilding actions, conferences, seminars, corporate dinners, product launches, among others. If you haven't made up your mind yet, our team will design a tailor-made event, offering you a "Turnkey" project. Among many differentiating products, we mention two created by our Event Department for a market that also intends to innovate with its clients: Official Hospitality Agent and Football Experience. Would you like to become a partner? You can join our team and be an Official Hospitality Agent.
By becoming an Official Hospitality Agent, your customers will have access to SL Benfica matches with some complementary services, turning this into a very competitive product. We also offer the Official Hospitality Agent logo to promote this service during the 2017/2018 sports season. Each unit in this pack includes a match ticket, a scarf, a Benfica Cosme DamiĂŁo Museum tour, a meal ticket at any Benfica Fan Zone restaurant or at one of the stadium's bars, 20% off at Benfica Official Store and Online Store and a 5% discount at Adidas. Contact us to know more about this new product, how many competitions we are participating in, what matches you can enjoy in these seats, conditions for booking and the maximum number of tickets, per match, you can make
available to your customers. Football Experience is one of our premium products. With it, we guarantee a unique and memorable experience to your customers, employees and partners. The goal is to play a football match as if it was an official competition game, in which all participants feel like players of Sport Lisboa and Benfica's first team and live a CHAMPIONS experience. Start with inviting 40 partners or employees and bring them together in your company. SLB goes to your office, on the club bus, to pick up these stars to live a unique experience in a Portuguese stadium considered an icon of modernity, safety and comfort. We allow the use of SLB facilities for four hours: the main pitch, shower rooms for both teams and the Presidential Tribune for guests. Two hostesses will wait for the group and follow it. The match can have the normal 90 minutes, but it will be up to you to understand how fit your players are. You will find personalised equipment for each participant, as well as fruit and water. To create a more footballing environment each team will have an SLB glory as coach who will help creating the motivation any team needs to step on our pitch. There will be a refereeing team, physiotherapists and balls to perfectly mimic an official match. Our speaker will help create the GLORIOUS environment we are used to, will call our eagle Vitรณria, align the teams and call each participant to the microphone, and vibrate with each goal. Sound and mega screens of the stadium will be used. Your company can prepare contents to simulate stadium environment. Our BTV will follow up on the event and make a memorable video of
this unforgettable moment. We will take care of insurance for the group of players. Perhaps a group member can take a leading position and participate in a motivational talk, along with our glories, in the dreaded press conference room. You can also consider bringing guests to watch the game in the Presidential Tribune and finish the morning or afternoon with a fantastic meal, in one of the stadium's exclusive rooms. Once more, there are many services we can add to your event, such as cheerleaders, personalised merchandising for guests, medals and trophies, and many others. We have a very competent team, excellent services and a unique experience to provide you with. We are waiting for you!
BENFICA EVENTS Lisboa . Portugal +351 217 219 500 email@example.com www.slbenfica.pt/events
WHAT'S NEW 6
Whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s New In Lisboa? The Portuguese capital continues to surprise with new venues, services and activities. Join us and check what's new.
Pillar 7 Experience - Interpretive Centre of 25 de Abril Bridge When Apple last presented the new iPhones, a picture of 25 de Abril bridge in Lisboa travelled the world. But did you know there's a new way to explore it? The Pillar 7 Experience - Interpretive Centre of 25 de Abril Bridge is the new tourist and cultural attraction in Lisboa and it intends to remember this infrastructure's construction story. The visit ends with an elevator ride to a panoramic viewpoint, 80 metres high, which allows an original view of the city, particularly on the river.
Monte Mar Lisboa Restaurant Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a new hotspot in Lisboa, specialised in fish and seafood. The terrace provides wonderful views over Lisboa. This restaurant is prepared to host all kinds of events. Inside, it can accommodate up to approximately 300 people. On the outside deck, there is the possibility of a cocktail service for up to 400 people.
SUD Lisboa Hall
Tejo Power Station
The Pavilion Carlos Lopes
Based in the maritime area of Belém and nearby 25 Abril Bridge, SUD Lisboa is about 5 km from the city centre and a great option for events. Great in size as much as technology, its ground floor has 1000 sqm and 1st Floor 700 sqm of high quality sound and light equipment. SUD Lisboa Hall can adapt to any type of event, decoration and entertainment.
Located on the Tejo riverbank in Belém, Tejo Power Station has unique features to host institutional events.Characterised by its size and formality, the Turbine Hall is Tejo Power Station’s most iconic area. It is a large room, measuring 270 square metres with a 9-metre ceiling height, offering a fabulous river view. This room has a capacity for up to 200 people in theatre style. Set against the Tejo Power Station’s industrial backdrop, the Condenser Room is perfect for hosting smaller events, seating approximately 60 people.There is also a conference room for more reserved meetings, accommodating a maximum of 50 people seated.
The pavilion, designed by architects Guilherme and Carlos Rebello de Andrade and Alfredo Assunção, was built in Lisboa, and taken by boat to Rio de Janeiro, to be the Portuguese Pavilion at the International Exhibition of Rio, in 1920. It was later rebuilt in Lisboa in 1932. Once called Palace of Exhibitions, it was renamed Pavilion Carlos Lopes, in honour of the Olympic athlete who won a gold medal at the 1984 Olympic Games. With extensive refurbishment in 2016, the venue has an exceptional location in the downtown area and it is a unique venue in Lisboa with different rooms for all type of events: meetings, conferences, lunch and dinner, fairs and exhibitions, product presentations, etc. The main venue has 2,000 sqm and can host 2,900 people.
A special edition
IT&CMAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Big 25th Birthday Bash Incentive Travel & Conventions, Meetings Asia held its annual get together in Bangkok from 26th to 28th of September. It was a special edition for the organisation. Last year, IT&CMA - Incentive Travel & Conventions, Meetings Asia welcomed 870 delegates from 23 countries and territories. This year the stakes were higher than ever, considering it was the 25th anniversary of this event, that gathers destinations, buyers, suppliers and specialised media from around the world. Simultaneously, CTW (Corporate Travel World), that joins the event every year, turned 20 in 2017. TTG Events, the organiser, revealed that in 2017 there was an increased interest from the private sector to exhibit at the event, that took place at the Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld. Taiwan is one of the big investors, with nearly double the space allocated comparing to last year. Macao had more than 30 exhibitors from the private sector marking their presence and the regions of Chiang Mai and Lanna, in Thailand, got together in the same space. Already present were the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau, Dubai Business Events, Korea Tourism Organisation, Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau, Osaka Convention and Tourism Bureau, Sapporo Convention Bureau, Tourism Promotion Board Philippines and many others. Big corporations like Royal Caribbean, Silversea Cruises and Thai Airways also presented their strategy and ideas at the event. During the summer, TTG tried to win over local buyers, for the event, emphasising the networking prospects, as well as the chance to do business with the best in the sector.
Thailand is investing big in the MI sector, a strategy that makes sense in a country that has, for years, topped the world rankings for leisure tourism. In 2015, business travellers spent over 2,6 billion dollars in the country, in services, goods, entertainment and accommodation.
The luxury world is also featured in the event, as a perfect complement to the MI offer. Asia is one of the leading destinations for events in the world and its importance will likely increase in the coming years.
Down the vineyards
Douro Off The Beaten Track In A Wine Tasting Route Portugal Green Walks, from Braga, in the North of Portugal, takes tourists on walks that taste like Port wine and portray the history of producing farms.
GPS for hikers From the Casal de Loivos viewpoint to Pinhão there are about 6 kilometres along dirt roads, passing through the Port wine plantations that dot the mountain behind Pinhão in the Douro region. Paulo Lopes travels the path with the confidence of someone who has done it over and over again. There is no Portugal Green Walks route that its founder and CEO has not personally travelled to, in order to understand the best routes and how they can be used, in a business that aims to take tourists to the north of the country. In Douro, business is going well, only limited by the difficulty in finding accommodation in this World Heritage region, which is increasingly expensive and exclusive. But that does not discourage Paulo Lopes, who in the Pilgrimage Way of Saint James alone, one of the company's highlights, already hosted 800 people this year, from all over the world. Down the vineyards, the first “quinta” (a farm where the harvest of grapes takes place and wine is made) that walkers find in their path is “Jalloto”, a wine, olive oil and honey producer that conquers those who pass through with a scenic balcony of unobstructed views over the Douro valley, Pinhão always in the background. And there begins the wine tasting, which attracts so many tourists to the region. A little further down, “Quinta da Roêda” has a privileged spot to enjoy the landscape, with a small table where you can sit. Never forgetting, of course, to taste the “Croft” offered there, in a hall that is also used for events. Paulo Lopes's walk, part of the package he sells to tourists in the region, ends at Symington's “Quinta do Bomfim” at lunchtime, with a picnic under the envious looks of the dozens of foreigners holding their glasses. Back to Pinhão, it is time to go back, but not without visiting one of the privileged partners of this Braga company. Portugal Green Walks often works with “Quinta do Seixo”, a Sandeman “quinta”, where it is possible to have a picnic in the vineyards, on a terrace that is a true vantage point facing Douro.
Many of the routes are done independently by the tourists, who are provided with a GPS that does not need Internet, and a roadbook that helps to find the right way and to visit all the places that are worth it. The programs, which last up to a week, can be customised according to the hikers' taste. With more or less kilometres a day, the aim is to make Douro landscapes better known to tourists coming from everywhere. During the walk, hikers stay in local hotels or in a rural accommodation, getting to know the best of the region. Portugal Green Walks deals with all the logistics so that people are where they have to be at the right time. Paulo Lopes explained that the best months for the company are May and September, when there are mild temperatures, which allow hiking without major problems. Germans, Belgians, and tourists from Nordic countries top the raking of customers for the company, but Paulo Lopes has already received people from all over the world. Portuguese and Spanish not so much. Portugal Green Walks is also organising one, two and three days incentives, and receives companies groups for team building or bonding activities. Paulo Lopes believes that there is still much to do in Portugal to stimulate this segment of walks and bicycles, in which the company is also acting. Often the regions are too unexplored and there are no support infrastructure for businesses and tourists. The founder of Portugal Green Walks now wants to invest in international Douro and Montesinho regions. We will definitely check that out.
Climb to the top of Arrรกbida Bridge
Most Original Porto View? From The Top Of Arrábida Bridge The top of Porto best views has a new entry. And to reach it, there is a challenge to overcome: climb to the top of Arrábida Bridge, one of the most important bridges of the Portuguese city. Event Point had a try.
When Arrábida Bridge was completed in 1963 it was oficially the bridge with the largest reinforced concrete arch in the world. The project and the circumstance created great curiosity among journalists from all over the world and Porto people watched the construction of this emblematic work as if it were a film. Today, this curiosity is different. Arrábida Bridge is the only crossing of this magnitude in the northern hemisphere that can be visited. And it was Porto Bridge Climb that came up with the idea. The project began to take shape in 2014, as Pedro Pardinhas tells us, although initially with a different outline. "One idea was to reactivate the elevators that existed on these Arrábida Bridge pillars. That was the starting point. We contacted Infra-Estruturas de Portugal [the public company that owns and operates the bridge] to see if this was possible to achieve, we had a meeting, we assessed costs, and soon realised that it cost a lot of money.” With the technical visits to the bridge, the idea to make use of the staircase and provide visits to the top of this historic building arose. The tourism boom gave the company an increased confidence to continue with the project. In 2015 there were several talks with Infra-Estruturas de Portugal and in April 2016 the concession agreement between the two was signed. In June of the same year the bridge visits began. Curiously, Portuguese have been the ones who are looking for this experience the most. "It started with a very big impact, we had a lot of media interest. The first weeks were fully booked." Today they are able to attract the foreign tourist. "We are visible at the tourist office, we have good ratings on Tripadvisor, we are the 11th attraction in Porto, the first paid one, and this gives us a lot of
buzz," says Pedro Pardinhas. However, in 2017, they are still relying on more Portuguese than foreigners. Now they are aiming to reach groups, companies and events. And the options are varied, with some imagination. "It is possible for companies to come together and do team building or an incentive here. We are actively contacting companies so they can host events". The limit of 13 people who can climb at the same time may seem like a great obstacle, but Pedro Pardinhas explains that groups can be separated and those who are waiting "on land" can enjoy the space below, an also pleasant point to socialise. And did you know there are sunrise and full moon visits?
Safety above all The sense of security is evident in both the ascent and the descent of the 262 stairs of the bridge, Event Point witnessed. Security is a major concern. "We create conditions so that people can not slide, roll or fall." Steel cables act as a handrail, a physical barrier that limits the path where people can walk, constraining freedom of movement. "Occasionally people are sorry not to be able to walk around a bit more, but this is for a transverse public, we have to be careful. We have to reduce adrenaline a bit to make sure everyone leaves alive," Pedro Pardinhas says. Upon reaching the top, besides a unique view and the opportunity to enjoy a historic building, Porto Bridge Climb has a surprise for the visitor. We will not reveal what it is, so give it a try!
Territory identity is vital to attract events
If Cascais Invests In Events? Evidently Are events a territory's identity? The identity of a territory is something scarcely spoken about in Portugal. In fact, there are only few territories that know their purpose, where they are heading and what they want to achieve... Understanding a territory's identity requires much study, much reflection and a long-term strategy, a strategy that must be understood by everyone, from rulers to the entire governmental structure, as well as the population. Cascais is quoted as a national and international example, we know and respect our history, a history marked by welcoming all, but we can not live clinging to history. We essentially need to know where to go... we know our purpose and we know our strategy, and this is understood and known by all and we are proud of it! Our purpose is to create the "best place to live one day, one week or a lifetime". Our strategy is felt in the City Hall and Tourism structures, it is felt in the streets, in construction works, in communication, in promotion and, of course, in events. But are events what decide a territory's identity, or is its identity that attracts events? It's actually a mix of the two... In Cascais, investment in events is clearly and totally in line with our strategy. Cascais portrays, indeed, a portfolio of events in distinct areas such as Surf, Tennis, Horses, Sailing, Golf, Culture or Knowledge, and this did not happen by chance. I know the term "portfolio of events" is a little-heard concept in Portugal, but this one, thought and planned in detail, reflects our strategy as a whole, reflects our purpose as a whole, reflects also our identity as a whole. It would be unfair to think international events are attracted here simply by chance, or just because we have the financial capacity to respond to these organisations' demands.
No, actually, territory identity is vital to attract these well-known events, along, of course, with infrastructure created in the past, originating this identity construction. No one would think America`s Cup would come to Cascais if there was no Marina or a Naval Club with the conditions to host such an event. It would be unthinkable for the America`s Cup to come to Cascais if there were no 4 and 5 star hotels in quantity to receive distinguished VIPs, also enabling big brands to activate their products and accommodate their customers. No one would also think Longines Global Champions Tour, the world's largest horse racing event, whose riders and team owners bring together the world's greatest fortunes, would come to Cascais if there were no excellent hotels, but also a world reference race course, built with the territory's strategy and purpose in mind. Would anyone expect that a great brand decided to create and invest in an International Festival of Culture, in a city without museums and cultural equipment of reference? The answer is simple... no! It would not be expected, nor would it happen. Cascais International Festival of Culture exists because there is a Museum Quarter and it has 19 cultural facilities in its perimeter. Would it make sense for a Municipality to create and invest in the Estoril Conferences, the largest and most international conference held in Portugal, that brings to our country world-class knowledge, with the world's greatest thinkers, academics and politicians, if there wasn't a strategy of knowledge creation and knowledge centres creation, such as Lisbon's Universidade Nova? It would not make any sense... because we know "cities that grow the most are those that can attract, fix and develop talent". Events complete identity, events help in the construction of identity, events are part of identity, but events by themselves are not the identity of a territory.
BERNARDO CORRĂ&#x160;A DE BARROS VICE-PRESIDENT OF TURISMO DE CASCAIS
AIA: Drive Your Way To A Successful Event The Autódromo Internacional do Algarve (AIA) is far from being only a racetrack. Located near the city of Portimão, at Sítio do Escampadinho, Mexilhoeira Grande, it boasts several meeting rooms and some pretty original spaces that can be used for all types of events. Come to one of Europe’s finest leisure destinations and drive your business to success with their help, even if your business is not driving at all.
The history The AIA was inaugurated in 2008 to receive the grand finale of the FIM World Superbike Championship, its first event. From the beginning it was designed to provide everything necessary to the many sides of the motorsport industry, from the manufacturers to the racing teams, in order to test develop, present and launch their products. The concept was to work on supporting infrastructure, like the Racetrack, a Go-Kart Track, Off-Road Park, ‘Vista do Falcão Residences’ Apartments, a 5 star Hotel, a Techno Park and a Sport Complex. All this can work as a support to organise an unforgettable event or meeting.
The race to MI AIA has a little for everyone in the events, congresses and incentives sector. The facilities in the complex can cater to your every need, combining modern facilities and great services, whether it’s a small meeting or a reception for 800 people. Natural light, private settings, restaurants, bars and catering service are all up to speed with us.
The main rooms VIP Lounge: located over the pits and paddock area, this premium venue boasts great views over the pit lane start and finish line. It’s in this area that special guests watch racing events. The lounge is 1,152 sqm and can be adjusted for all kinds of needs, from small gatherings to an event hosting hundreds of people. D. Ermelinda VIP Room: this is a great solution for smaller events or meetings, up to 60 guests. An event in this venue guarantees a panoramic view over the track, with a large balcony ideal to be used as a lounge area, with cocktails and finger food. Briefing room: a flexible venue, it can be used for several purposes, including press conferences and, of course, meetings and product presentations. It can host up to 120 people.
Hospitality suites The hospitality suites at the AIA are somewhat different from the other rooms. Scattered around various areas of the circuit (VIP Tower, Paddock and Grandstand), these suites have natural daylight, toilets, TV, air conditioning, and, of course, great views over private balconies. With a capacity of around 20 people, they are the right place to host meetings, training sessions and breakout rooms.
Pit garages What about hosting your meeting at a top of line pit garage, a place all great racing teams have to go for support? AIA boasts 42 pit garages that can be either used individually or jointly, to cater to your every need. A great venue for a presentation or a product launch, of any kind.
They have your back, don’t worry AIA can provide you with everything you require for a successful event, regardless of size. The catering services have all sorts of menus and can serve a simple coffee break or a gala dinner with a quality and efficiency that any racing team strives to achieve. And the setting is one of a king for any event. The services include event planning and management, AV equipment, personalised decoration, guest reception service, entertainment, photography & video services, rent-a-car & transfers services.
Go karting after a busy day If you choose to host your event at AIA why not take advantage of what they have to offer and go karting with your clients? Or treat your team to some fun during a meeting or an incentive.
You can even sleep at the AIA The AIA has its own hotel, the 5 star Pestana Race, inside the complex, where you can relax after a busy day and enjoy five complementary karting laps. If you choose to host your event there, the hotel offers several meeting rooms, named after racing legends.
© Marlon Dutra
Four Days In Florianópolis Brazil’s New MI Star The city raised the stakes and made it to number four in ICCA’s ranking in Brazil, in 2016. It claims to be the “best Brazilian incentive destination”.
Affectionately called “Floripa” by its inhabitants, Florianópolis is probably not on many tourists route in a visit to Brazil. But the city has chosen its own path, with a clear investment in the Meetings Industry (MI) that is starting to pay off. Capital of the southern Santa Catarina State, Forianópolis is located on an island, connected to the rest of the region by two bridges and, of course, it boasts of 43 white sand beaches. 52% of the city is protected area and so the natural setting is one of a kind, dotted with villages of colourful houses, churches and monuments built in colonial style, with a marked influence from the Portuguese island of Azores, whose people settled in this area of Brazil. The local cuisine is a treat, with the Azorean influence visible in an array of fish and seafood dishes. Across the bridges, in mainland, the developed and industrial Florianópolis seems like a world away from the picturesque landscape of the island. Here, you can dine at the best restaurants and watch the famous city skyline. The Floripa Convention and Visitors Bureau (FCVB) has a motto: “the best incentive destination of Brazil”. The town offers a four-day itinerary for those who choose Florianopolis for this purpose, detailed in the FCVB’s website. Day 1: Start your journey with a tour along the north of the island, heading for mainland. Sail to Baía dos Golfinhos (Dolphin’s Bay), after a welcome drink at your boat. While you sail, get to know Anhatomirim island and its fortress (Fortaleza de Santa Cruz), one of the old Portuguese defense systems for the island. For lunch, feast on fresh fish caught by local fishermen and cooked in the boat, while you bathe in the bay. At night, enjoy a posh dinner, with local produce and wines. Day 2: Feel the rush of going down the rapids of Cubatão River. Watch the landscape at Mata Atlântica (a type of vegetation that grows by the sea, in Brazil) and learn about its fauna and flora. Enjoy a medieval lunch in a prized brewery and watch the sunset with a toast at São José da Ponta Grossa Fortress, an 18th century building. Day 3: Stroll around the colonial houses in Ribeirão da Ilha and see the process of oyster production. Enjoy the wine, a typical treat of the local mountains and have lunch at a seaside restaurant. All this in a city that’s part of a network of creative places distinguished by Unesco. Try the “cachaça”, the national Brazilian drink, in an old warehouse and finish off with another great sunset at Santo António de Lisboa. Day 4: Hit the beach on your final day and sail to paradise: the island of Campeche, a place of white sand and crystal clear water. Try out the underwater routes and the ways through the vegetation until you get to the east of the island, where you can see the a large set of ancient rock art (over 3000 years old). Enjoy a gourmet picnic before returning to Santa Catarina Island. Back in town, take a look at Conceição Lagoon.
© Francisco Anzola
Brazil is more than Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, and the MI sector can find some good incentives in places like Florianópolis. A destination off the beaten track.
Five Reasons To Take Your Incentive Trip To Mozambique Food: As a country blessed with a coastline that goes as far as the eye can see, it is not surprising that seafood is one of its iconic gastronomic elements. Like all Mozambican cuisine, its preparation was influenced by the Portuguese, but also by the Arabs and the Indians. Secluded Beaches: Bathed by the Indian Ocean, Mozambique is known for its heavenly beaches, with clear and refreshing waters. Many of them are served by luxury resorts, others are completely deserted. Underwater activities: Scuba diving, swimming with wild dolphins, kayaking, snorkeling are some of the activities Mozambique offers. Exploring the various small islands that belong to the territory is a highlight of any trip to the country. Safaris: Gorongosa is one of the most important natural parks in the world and, therefore, a major safari hotspot. The Maputo Elephant Reserve is also a must see in the region. Cultural and vibrant capital city: With the civil war wounds left behind, Maputo is a city with much to check out. The Train Station, the Nossa Senhora da Conceição Fortress, the Central Market and the Handicraft, Flower and Gastronomy Fair are some of the places to get to know. © Stig Nygaard
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Macao Has A Life Beyond Gambling
The territory has a new association, MISE, that launched an Event Planners Guide to help the Meetings Industry sector’s work in the region. Corporate events are flocking to Macao, in a clear sign that the Chinese territory is more than just gambling. Cars, finance companies and even consumer goods are holding more and more events in the region, whose strategy for the Meetings Industry (MI) sector has become more organised in the past year, after the creation of Macao Meetings, Incentives and Special Events Association (MISE). Bruno Simões, this entity's Secretary, declared in an interview to Event Point that the association was founded to “ join various organisations”, including special events and incentives agencies to their congresses and meetings counterparts. “We want to have an English offer for foreigners”, Simões said, so that they can see the best of Macao, beyond all the casinos that are a symbol of the region throughout the world. With that in mind, MISE launched the Macao Event Planners’ Guide (MEPG), a helpful tool for anyone planning to host an event in the territory. The aim, as stated in the association’s website, is “to create an integrated platform for the MICE industry and business offerings in Macao. MEPG is the consolidated Professional English directory on the Macao MICE Industry for
(business) event planners worldwide”. This directory can be downloaded by those interested in consulting these services. “MEPG is the first step in creating an Event Destination Brand for Macao with the consolidation of resources and quality services throughout the city, and to promote to the world what Macao can offer”, assures the agency. The companies and services that operate in the MI sector can be listed. All they have to do is ask MISE to do so. The main markets investing in Macao are Asian, topped by China (60% of all business) and followed by Korea, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, among other countries. Bruno Simões says there is much work to do, and as a player in this segment (through the companies DOC DMC and Small World Experience), the MISE Secretary knows what he is talking about. Macao was hit by typhoon Hato in August, an extreme weather event that brought some concerns to the tourism business in the former Portuguese territory. But Simões assures those interested in investing in the region that the locals are used to dealing with these storms.
Events are like puzzles
Event Factories â&#x20AC;&#x2018; A Creativity Mission! Today we can compare events to puzzles.
We present the image and concept to the client. You are asked to divide the proposal into 1,000 pieces, withdraw 500, add 50, keep the concept and budget initially presented. In short, a challenge or even a puzzle! In most cases, this approach is based on the basic assumptions from briefings, "doing more with less", and often we only have access to these assumptions after the "dream" is presented. Most of the times, this results in doubling the effort invested in each project. First, we present the "perfect" proposal and only after this step will we think of the event adjusted to the real assumptions of the briefing, always trying to keep, or not to distort much, the initial concept "approved" by the client. Briefings are increasingly scarce, as are opportunities to make events totally unique and distinctive. Brands and their managers lack ambition, the will to dream and to risk. It is increasingly customary to spend the day giving answers to simpler proposals, with creativity limited by budget and presentation timings and with price and logistics as the main focus. These assumptions are driving most of the events to a path where creativity becomes a secondary factor, posing a threat to the evolution of the market and events as an efficient communication tool. This reality turns event companies into "Factories" with "mass productions". â&#x20AC;&#x153;Factories" are the result of the amount of work that has to be answered in record timings, which is not necessarily negative because it shows that we continue with a market that invests and needs to invest in events. "Mass production" results from repeated use of the same type of solutions. I believe it is our duty as event organisers to counter some of these trends and challenge customers to prioritise project originality, as creativity has to be our number one priority. This creativity may be visible either in a grand plan in an innovative set, or in small creative and differentiating notes. These little notes sometimes do not imply an additional financial investment by brands, they only mean that the brands allow the agencies to have the confidence and the necessary time that they need to be an added value for their projects.
We have been working for years on the limitations and pressures of a market haunted by financial and structural "ghosts" and yet we make it happen and we even win awards for what we do. I believe that the coming years are about change, with increased investment and confidence, and that creativity will be fundamental for brands to achieve their goals.
MIGUEL PERDIGĂ&#x192;O DESAFIO GLOBAL TE AM LE ADER
The level of engagement is incredibly high in events
"I'm looking forward to seeing new ideas, creativity and innovation" The president of the Bea World jury, which will meet this November in Porto, shared with Event Point the expectations for the next edition of the awards, and the experience of being responsible for Lego events for Central Europe, Middle East and Africa. Can you share with us the biggest highlights of your career so far? I used to work in different sectors – music, sports, advertising and now in a toy business - but mainly I worked in the Corporate Communication and Events sphere. Since I act mostly in this area, being the Bea President is a true recognition and the biggest highlight. What are the main challenges of working in a major international company events-wise? It can vary from one company to another or even within a person working for the same company. I represent the CEEMEA region – Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa – that is a very complex region in comparison with some other European regions that have, for example, only three countries under its leadership. Therefore, my colleagues can have a very different work experience than myself. Since the region I represent is so diverse, we design a different strategy for different market clusters. From my perspective, the first that come to mind are in general different laws, regulations and standards, cost calculation, currency rates, shipment methods, customs and duty. I see three main challenges: Complexity: We have a full spectrum of markets under our team’s leadership – from mature markets where we have offices to developing ones in which we do not have an active presence and are represented by distributors. These markets are very polarised; they have different goals and needs, and in practice almost every country has a different official language. Scalability: We have to make sure that events that we develop are relevant to different locations; therefore, we have to think how to produce them to fit diverse event premises. Timing: Developing event concepts for more markets that are not necessarily on one continent makes the lead-time challenging. We have to make sure that we are in line with the marketing strategy; we have to have time to develop the ‘big idea’. Along the way, you have many internal and external stakeholders involved, whom you have to inform about the development process and get approval from. On top of it all, you must bear in mind a delivery time not only within EU countries, but in our case also, for example, for African countries.
How important are events for Lego? Do you feel the importance of this tool is increasing? Events organised under the LEGO brand help us to explain LEGO play experience especially in markets that do not have such a long history as in Europe and USA. If you put LEGO bricks into children´s hands, you do not need to say anything, kids start to build, create their stories and they have fun. LEGO Events help us to show to parents what LEGO play means for their kids and what benefits the experience has – a part is fun, other development of different skills. I need to add that all of us know that events, in general, are very expensive if you look at the average cost per person and they are mostly of local character. At the same time, the level of engagement is incredibly high in comparison with other communication channels. With the latest development of Social Media, we can create a content from events and share it on the social media. On top of it, there is also UGC (User Generated Content) shared on these platforms. This way, we add reach to the existing cost and lower the cost per person. Being so, we still can have good quality leads via engagement metrics, not only views. Thanks to this development, I see the increasing potential of the industry. Yet, we have to leverage it properly. Being a brand that has children as one of the main targets, what kind of extra challenges do you have in your events? I would not say that we have extra challenges during our events. Naturally, what we are very cautious about is to make sure – according to the company motto: only the best is good enough, that all assets and settings meet the quality and safety expectations of our consumers. We produce only the safest products of the highest quality so that parents can rest assured that their children can experience the many essential values of play while playing safe. This approach we indeed respect while organising events. Do you hire local agencies for your events? We do hire local agencies. We also have an internal agency with which we primarily work in different areas including events. There is a big benefit of this set up – the agency knows our strategy, needs and quality requirements of
assets that are produced well. They are very well acquainted with our internal rules and guidelines and this helps to quickly understand the task. Our internal agency develops a large percentage of LEGO Event concepts, and then local agencies implement these events in markets since their great advantage is knowledge of local environment and audience. Of course, we can adjust the general concept to local needs. However, this does not mean that local agencies only implement what was created centrally. There is still plenty of room for concept development and creative ideas to be designed by local agencies including major events. As an example, I would like to name the LEGO Kidsfest Event held in Prague, the Czech Republic, organised and developed by E-motion, a Slovak agency, or lately The LEGO Group 85th Anniversary Event, organised by Event Arena, a Czech agency. What do you expect when you choose an agency? What main qualities do you look for? The agency should be able to implement our marketing strategy in event concepts where they would have a task to develop. Since our team operates on more markets, the agency should be able to think at a wider level, meaning not to think only locally but regionally. I have to say that sometimes it is not that easy to mentally exceed the territory of a state. Besides that, I would like to add among the main criteria: effectiveness – the agency has to understand that it is crucial to have evaluation from events that are organised so we learn from it and do it even better next time. Creativity, ability to perfectly execute and channel strategy are, of course, part of the criteria that should not be missed.
including playability, model quality and fit with the LEGO brand. Once the Review Board has given a project a go, the next step is to decide on final design, pricing and release date before it goes to the factory and is released for sale. Personally, I’m a big fan of this LEGO theme that helps to spread the creativity of any single individual. How do you feel about being Eubea’s jury President? It is a great honour! I absolutely did not expect the appointment; what’s more, I am proud that I can represent the entire jury composed of professionals from all over Europe / world. It is definitely one of biggest highlights of my career. What are you looking for in the competing events? I hope to see great strategies and fantastic results of competing events that matched the objectives set. I am looking forward to seeing new ideas, creativity and innovation presented by industry representatives from all over the world. All the contestants will have the chance to pitch their events to the jury. What kind of approach do you find more effective? It is important to be well structured in their presentation and to dedicate time – during the onsite presentation – and number of characters in the initial submission process. The objective should be clearly set, achieved results should reflect the objectives. To include the channel strategy with data related to number of people reached and engaged, is for me personally very important. Creativity and innovation is, naturally an integral part of a successful event, and all its main elements should be shown in the submitted video.
New formats, virtual and augmented reality... from your experience, what are the top three game changers that will shape the events of tomorrow? Sometimes I have a feeling that the game changers change every month. A lot of new formats take you on incredible adventures in virtual reality and you can experience completely new things. But what is important is what does it mean for a brand or a company that uses technology during their events. There are not many companies that are able to combine the new technologies with their brand message so that is relevant to both the brand and the company. Not forgetting the cost of the development that can be very high if the money invested does not bring the desired result.
Have you ever hold an event in Portugal? How do you see the country as an event destination? Not personally, since I primarily work in a different region. However, I am very well aware of LEGO Events that are being held in Portugal. For example, in Porto, there is the LEGO Fan Factory concept that I personally really like. It is a permanent event in a selected shopping mall in the form of a baby-sitting corner. LEGO play provides great building experience and at the same time a role-play full of stories that children can create and imagine themselves. The play offers fun and development of different skills. I hope that people in Porto are aware of it and that they like the experience.
Lego was one of the first brands to include co-creation in the development of new products. How do you see this experience? We are very proud that our fans have a chance to co-create products under LEGO Ideas Platform. Launching LEGO Ideas back in 2014 was part of the LEGO Group’s commitment to co-create LEGO products with users. A Review Board of set designers and marketing representatives evaluates all ideas that are uploaded to LEGO Ideas platform and have received 10,000 votes within one year. The Board reviews each idea based on a number of review criteria
What are your favourite destinations for an event and why? I like Mediterranean countries because of the weather. Apart from other reasons, the main one is weather. In the Central and Eastern Europe is very hard to rely on weather conditions, therefore if an event is organised outside, you have to have two options “dry” and “wet” – for the case of the bad weather. We are organising a LEGO Event outside this week in the Czech Republic and the team is carefully watching the weather forecast to edit the settings depending on the final weather conditions.
What Happens After An Event? A Guide To Make It Last All eyes are on a particular day, on a speaker, a product launch, a brand activation. But what happens next is perhaps as important as the event itself. Being forgotten is not an option.
TEDx is a world authority on events and it makes sense to consult the list of things to do post-event, after each of these conferences, determined by those who created them. The goal is to keep the interest among participants and it begins with a questionnaire to realise the strengths and weaknesses of each event. Then organisers are advised to upload participation videos on YouTube, aiming that they go viral. They also post photos on Flickr and share them on the TEDx platform. Often the post-event, in which communications reach millions of people, turns out to be as or more important than the event itself and it is repeated on the Internet and social networks in a way that exceeds all expectations. But how can you make it last in these cases? TED Talks have well understood the power of social networks, video, and short, motivational lectures for a long time. Since the 1980s these conferences have been organised around the world a little and pioneered the full post-event potential. But not all events have this mobilisation capacity. Interacting with those who participated in an event directly is the first thing to do and is within the reach of any organiser. It can start with sending a personalised thank you note to each participant, or even a participation diploma, and using social networks to go further. Meaning that the important thing is: 1 - Sending an email or other type of written thank you note to event participants. This is the first step to closing this chapter and moving forward with the postevent. Showing that the event won with each person's participation can be the key to positive feedback. 2 - Using social networks to continue interacting with participants. Sharing photos and videos, talking with attendants, answering questions, marking participants in relevant posts are important activities to stimulate the post-event. For example, if it's an annual event, it's worth remembering over the course of 12 months what happened and how to prepare for this year's event. A good tip is to create a facebook group to share information and experiences of what happened and what is being planned. 3 - Organising a small event to follow the previous one. A face-to-face meeting or even a remote meeting, so that the participants meet again and can do more networking, especially if these people are already linked to each other in social networks.
4 - Offering gifts. If the event is about launching a product, it is easy to extend its reach with gifts, promotions, etc. A contest can be launched on social networks to increase interaction between participants and organisers. Delivering vouchers at the end of the event also works for experiments or some kind of benefit. 5 - Practical things. At the end of the day, you need to sum up costs and revenues and see if the event was profitable and analyse results and performance. Have the objectives been met? Were there any problems? What was the feedback? It is easier to accomplish this task successfully if a list of objectives has been defined and then used to see if there have been major failures. But always taking into account, of course, that this is an evolutionary process and that many times the original script ends up undergoing many changes. It can be said that you need a "planned flexibility". 6 - Resting. Holding an event is a very tiring and stressful activity and you need to go off and rest, before you start thinking about your next one. And this should never be overlooked by those who organise events. Not always has the post-event had the follow-up it deserves, but it is essential not only to evaluate its effectiveness, but also to understand what went less well, and improve these aspects. Going back to the beginning, any of TEDx's conferences has a more "grandiose" post-event than the event itself. The longer you talk about a particular conference, a speaker who stands out, or a theme that has suddenly come to the fore, the more the original event becomes more important and there is a natural anticipation of what is there to come. And it does not even take a lot of resources to make it work, just the talent to "squeeze" what has been achieved in two or three days, located in time and space, and throw this "juice" around the world, so that everyone talks about it, comments and is curious about the next one.
Co-Creation And Events In 2008, Lego decided to create the Lego Ideas website in order to give fans the opportunity to contribute with suggestions of new products. One of the proposals was adding The Big Bang Theory's characters to the Lego universe. Advantages of this experience? The emergence of new ideas, risk reduction in the introduction to the market, and the involvement of fans even before the product is released. In August 2017, Marketeer magazine wrote a piece on EDP's challenge to young creatives to help them think about a new music festival. These are two obvious examples of co-creation. The term began to be used in 2004, following the bestseller "The future of Competition," by C.K. Prahalad and Venkat Ramaswamy. According to Wikipedia, itself an example of co-creation, this happens when people outside the company as suppliers, employees and customers get involved in the business or product, adding value and receiving in return the benefits of their contribution. According to the Vision Critical website, collaboration benefits business as follows:
1. it increases the capacity for innovation without having to constitute a team to create it; 2. increases the pace of innovation, since customers are already aware of the products; 3. it increases the flow of ideas, making it consistent and allowing these same ideas to enter immediately into the pipeline; 4. improves the ability to promote the product, since the process only allows the best ideas to reach the final stage.
How do we co-create? Creative Group's Trends in Events and Meetings 2017 report points to coâ&#x20AC;&#x2018;creation as one of the key trends for this year. And Event Manager Blog, always attentive to the market, presents the six steps to co-create in events: 1. Start Define your event's purpose and objective and give the participation coordinates, requesting inputs from the participants. You can do this easily by, for example, creating a website, and sending an email to your database inviting to participate. 2. Inspire participants The main rule is to make the process simple, no one will participate if you have to fill in dozens of forms. In social media you can share content that somehow helps to encourage potential participants, showing them the benefits of cocreation. And you can always think of a way to reward participation. 3. Gather ideas For example, create a Facebook event and use this platform to gather the ideas and data you are collecting. 4. Identify the best ideas To do so, also count on the audience contribution. Ideas with more "likes" and "shares" should earn your attention right away. 5. Choose the best ones With inputs from the audience in your pocket, take time to analyse the ideas. If so, contact the author and understand better the scope of the suggestion. After making a selection you can re-ask for other opinions, or you can arrange a vote. Prizes are always a good incentive to participate. 6. Create final content By organising the event you already have relevant content for your participants and these will be your main influencers and event promoters. If you acknowledged the public's importance, they will certainly give back that trust.
Events as a source of collaborative content There are already several events held with the firm purpose of co-creating. Many of them are linked to startups and the technology universe. But this purpose in events can be much more democratised. For example, try designing brand activations that allow consumers to give feedback and a specific contribution about the product or service. This circumstance originates a snowball effect that benefits the brand, because it provides solutions closer to what the consumer wants, while the consumer feels that the brand relies on him. And if the consumer is satisfied, he quickly becomes an advertiser for the brand. Vision Critical gives two examples of how co-creation through events is effective for brands. The first is DHL. This logistics and transportation company, one of the largest in the world, has decided to organise workshops in Germany and Singapore with some of the most loyal customers, with the aim of co-creating solutions that enhance the customer experience and service. And there were several "inventions" that emerged from these events, like Parcelcopter, a delivery service by drone. The workshop participants tested this potential service themselves. According to Forbes, DHL's cocreation efforts have improved customer satisfaction ratings by 80%. Another example is Manchester City. The English football club decided to make some changes on its website and mobile experience. For this, the club decided to launch focus groups, surveys, usage tests and new prototypes. Along with the fans, the club co-created a mobile experience, rich in video and other content and with a modern design. These are just a few tips. And to put words into action, we invite you to cocreate with us the next edition of Event Point International by suggesting themes and interviewees. Send us a message on Facebook or leave us your input at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Promoting Engagement At An Event: Some Tips To make a success out of your event it is essential to generate high levels of engagement with your guests, before, during and after it.
To assertively and efficiently communicate, today more than ever, you have a significant set of tools that you can use to streamline your event. Here you have five solutions you can adopt to maximise your event. 1) SOCIAL MEDIA
4) MOBILE APPLICATION
As the name implies, social networks are nothing more than virtual spaces of socialisation, of content and experience sharing. Thus, it is considered "fertile ground" in terms of events. Choose a maximum of three social media to use during the event. The choice will depend on your business, but we would say Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are the channels that can generate an immediate return in most cases. Share pictures, video clips, quotes, or even small polls (use various forms of feedback for closed answers) and above all invite your community to participate. Also involve your speakers and other digital influencers in your market, so you can share various moments of the event with your followers. This is a simple way to amplify the reach of your event using social media.
At first, you may think that producing a mobile application for a two-day or three-day event may be somewhat excessive, due to the complexity of the process... A reality, if you are considering something from scratch, ultrapersonalised or integrated with other systems. Fortunately, there are several platforms on which you can build your app using pre-formatted templates and without programming skills. This solution is literally within anyone's reach. Try to explore each platform's features to select the one that best serves your purposes. On this journey, I recommend GoodBarber, AppMachine and BuildFire, where prices start at â&#x201A;Ź28 a month. This option can be an alternative to professional SMS, once it allows sending notifications to users who installed the application, at no extra cost. However, the percentage of participants downloading the event application may be reduced, which should be considered before making a decision.
2) HASHTAG Hashtags, in the context of Social Media, are in essence tags used to identify related posts for certain subjects. Originally introduced by Twitter, these days they are a common denominator in almost all social media. How to take advantage of this technology in your event First create a unique hashtag for your event, for example # MktConference2017. Use capital letters in the beginning of each word so that the hashtag is more noticeable. Use tools like www.tagboard.com, where you can monitor posts that are being published with this hashtag, just in time. Place an LCD in a strategic point of the event showing the tag board, which will allow participants to view the posts that are being shared about the event, in real time and across the various social media. 3) EMAIL MARKETING Email marketing is still one of the Digital Marketing channels with higher conversion rates. Through platforms such as Mailchimp, E-Goi or Active Campaign, schedule your campaign submissions, informing participants about key moments of your event, minutes before it starts. This small operation can have a very significant impact, especially if you have multiple micro events running simultaneously, working almost like a reminder. In addition to increasing your event's awareness, it will also help you get more participants.
5) VIDEO Video has taken a leading role in today's communication strategies. Companies such as Google or Facebook privilege this type of content more and more. It is estimated that by the end of 2017, about 74% of all Internet traffic will be used to consume video content around the world. One of the solutions that most excites me is the live broadcast, also known as livestreaming. Social media have democratised livestreaming, something that in the very recent past would be completely inaccessible to most SMEs in Portugal, considering the associated costs. Today, through Facebook or Instagram, you can perform multiple live videos to cover backstage, event preparation or question and answer sessions. Taking the example of a conference, schedule a live broadcast where the interviewer approaches the speaker and summarises his presentation and invites the audience to ask questions they would like to clarify. In social media, live videos are increasingly important and determinant. They boost your organic reach, which means you will reach more people without having to pay for it.
HĂ&#x2030;LDER PINTO DIGITAL SAPIENZ DIGITAL MARKE TING MANAGER
ÂŠ Rwanda Convention Bureau
Unlikely Meetings And Incentives Destinations Have you ever imagined holding a congress on top of the world or next to an African jungle populated by gorillas? Increasingly, the Meetings Industry is looking for original destinations and experiences and, therefore, we have decided to find less obvious countries, but with many surprises to offer. We started with two places that could not be more different: the frozen icebergs and the northern lights of Greenland are almost like a galaxy away from the surprising Rwanda with its lakes, biodiversity and fast-growing tourism.
Rwanda: In The Land Of The Mountain Gorillas, Congresses Are Taking Root Rwanda is doing its best to leave the war behind. A tourism and Meetings Industry boom is giving a helping hand to the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s growing economy. In September, Rwanda meets at the foot of Virunga volcanoes to provide the greatest homage in the life of any inhabitant of the country: the giving of a name. But in this case the named are baby mountain gorillas, a species that is the symbol of this nation and which, having already been on the verge of extinction, is now the target of the greatest care and attention from Rwandans. The ceremony, called Kwita Izina, dates back to 2005 and is a strong sign of Rwanda's accelerated development after the devastating 1994 genocide that killed between 800,000 and a million people. And if the little gorilla had an internet access, it could see its photo published, with the name, date of birth, sex and identification of the "godfather" who named it. This special celebration is carefully prepared and preceded by events, a gala dinner and conferences around the theme of conservationism, including visits from journalists and other international players, to increase Rwanda's notoriety in the world, and show that the country is already a far cry from the dark days of the 90s. Despite this, Rwanda has not forgotten its history, marked by centuries of challenges posed to the three ethnic groups that make up the population, the Hutus and Tutsis, who have fought each other for centuries, with the not always calming intervention by colonial powers, in this case Germany and Belgium, and the mysterious Twa, a Pygmy people whose home were the dense, green forests that cover a significant part of the country. In the capital,
ÂŠ Rwanda Convention Bureau
Kigali, a memorial can be visited on the genocide victims, mostly Tutsi, and where 250,000 people are buried. In the same city also operates HĂ´tel des Mille Colines, famous for the film "Hotel Rwanda".
Primate paradise Year after year, an increasing number of tourists travel to Rwanda for organised safaris, in which the main stars are the super-protected mountain gorillas and chimpanzees. The latter made Nyungwe forest in the southwest of the country their home. Lonely Planet says it is an "unparalleled experience, to seek out our cousin, more genetically alike," on walks through the deep forest. And if the little chimpanzees are a natural attraction, what about the 400 Angolan colobus monkeys, with their white beards, just one among several species of primates that curiously watch tourists travelling the forest routes? There is a varied offer of companies that organise these trips, with accommodation and meals included. A safari very almost a world away from those organised in Kenya or South Africa. For those who like to get a suntan, Gisenyi is a good alternative, in a country that has no sea. The sandy shores of Lake Kivu attract richer Rwandans and foreigners, with a comprehensive hotel offer.
© Rwanda Convention Bureau
© Rwanda Convention Bureau
MI more significant in tourism With arguments like these it is not surprising that Rwandans are welcoming more and more visitors. Rwanda is one of the fastest growing African countries and its focus is now on economic development, including through tourism. GDP has grown at a rate of more than 5%, according to World Bank data, and Rwandans have invested in environment, biodiversity and hotel industry. Their priority is to look to the future, where tourism is of vital importance, and the Meetings Industry (MI) is key to this country's strategy. Speaking to Event Point, Frank Murangwa, CEO of the Rwanda Convention Bureau (CBR), revealed that investing in the MI is a way to complement leisure tourism, and creating this agency has helped the country attracting international events. MI's revenues have been consistently rising in Rwanda. From US $29 million (€24,1 million) in 2014, they reached US $47 million (€39 million) in 2016, according to the same source. The country hosted events such as the Africa Cup of Nations, the World Economic Forum on Africa, the African Union Summit, the Global Africa Investment Summit, the Africa Hotel and Aviation Development Forums and the 28th Meeting between the signatories to the
Montreal Protocol, among many others. In addition, the capital Kigali has moved up to third place in the ICCA (International Congress and Convention Association)'s ranking for the African continent. In the city there are more than a thousand hotels, between three and five stars, and a congress centre that welcomes 2,600 people. Frank Murangwa revealed that Rwanda has received 45 conferences in 2016 and for this year 94 are planned, an increase of over 108%, in a country where "the most important markets are Africa, Europe, Asia and North America." For the CBR's CEO, the African continent has a lot of potential in this sector. "Over 70% of the events hosted previously are Africa centric. There are a lot of African association meetings that rotate within" the Continent, he explained. The Convention Bureau employs 29 people, and since it was established the number of people moving to conferences in the country has increased from 17,950 to 35,100. Overall, the tourism industry generated revenues of USD 404 million (EUR 336 million) in 2016 from USD 305 million (201 million euros) in 2014. A country still unexpected for an event, but soon ceasing to be so.
ÂŠ Visit Greenland | Rebecca Gustafsson
Greenland: The "Green Land" Where The Sun Does Not Set And The Sky Shines With Electric Hues Greenland is not an obvious destination for the Meetings Industry. But a trip to this island of northern lights, icebergs and small cold towns can be a life experience. To the north of Iceland there is a mysterious island where the sun shines at midnight and the aurora borealis paints the sky with electric colours during the winter's darkness. Greenland is the least densely populated country in the world and the largest island (Australia is considered a continental mass) of the planet, and is largely covered by a blanket of Arctic ice that in certain parts is more than 100,000 years old. A visit to this deserted region, where silence reigns and the air is so pure that you can observe the landscape in the distance with unparalleled clarity, is one of the highlights of any trip to the top of the world. The Greenland coast features occasional small towns with difficult names, of repeated consonants. 5,000 years ago, a wave of people began to consecutively migrate to the island. These Inuits originated in Canada, and share striking similarities with the Eskimos, namely the language, which is divided into several dialects. Meanwhile, the region was invaded by other Nordic peoples, especially Icelanders and Norwegians, but the colonies they founded in the
ÂŠ Visit Greenland | Mads Pihl
Middle Ages lasted shortly. These hard times are one of the inspirations for the famous Sagas of the Icelanders, that tell great histories of Nordic medieval towns, wars, lives and marriages. These stories, an oral tradition that was later transcribed, claim that the name of this island, "Green Land", was chosen by one of its pioneer explorers, Viking Erik the Red, in a kind of medieval marketing strategy, aiming to attract more settlers for the area. Greenland is currently an autonomous region, part of the Kingdom of Denmark, but its territory belongs to North America. It is an island that floats between two Continents.
A congress overlooking the icebergs The capital, Nuuk, is a growing city with modern buildings. It does not, however, escape the drama of the frozen landscapes that surround it, even though it houses the largest concentration of population in Greenland. It boasts of the largest venue for events on the island, the Hans Egede Hotel, which can host up to 350 people, including accommodation and catering. For smaller meetings there is the Katuaq - Greenland's Culture House, Inuk Hostels and the Seamen's Home Nuuk Hotel.
ÂŠ Visit Greenland | Mads Pihl
Visiting Greenland is not for everyone. Prices are high and the weather, especially in winter, with average temperatures of -20 degrees celsius in certain areas, is a strong deterrent. In addition, the island has a very limited road system and therefore depends on boats, helicopters and airplanes to connect the different zones of the country to each other. In cities like Ittoqqortoormiit the isolation is enormous, and this adds to this small set of coloured houses an aura of mystery and curiosity. In this remote area, dog sled tours take tourists, during the summer, to the frozen landscapes, with towering fjords and pristine wildlife, including seals and polar bears. Further north, the city of Qaanaaq was created by the Americans, to accommodate the displaced population of several villages, after the decision to build an air base at the old village. Here the sun is in the sky for 24 hours during summer, a disconcerting experience for those who are not accustomed. In winter, the spectacular aurora borealis stars in the dark of the Arctic, a phenomenon that is also caused by the sun and that can be seen throughout the island. Also in this place, tourists have the opportunity to get to know the locals better and venture into the icy nature. In Ilulissat the icebergs sail in the sea, in plain sight and in the shadow of the enormous glacier from where they departed, sometimes hastily. Actually, the block of ice that sank the Titanic was probably born in this city. Ilulissat was chosen as a site for the opening of the Arctic Hotel, one of the best in the country, in the front line of the region's investment in the Meetings Industry
ÂŠ Visit Greenland | Mads Pihl
sector. With 4 stars and a conference centre with a capacity for 120 people, the space has a privileged view of the icebergs, a landscape that no lecturer will surely forget. In Sisimiut, right inside the Arctic polar circle, Sisimiut Hotel manages to accommodate 250 people. Visit Greenland is the island's tourism entity. They explained Event Point that the Meetings Industry in the region is still "small-scale, limited primarily to some cities, based on existing resources in conference centres." Despite this, Greenland will host a tourism conference in September, bringing together players from that area, the Vestnorden Travel Mart, which is distributed by several of these venues. "Greenland is certainly one of the least known destinations in terms of MICE,
but we definitely have all the adventure, cultural exploration and nature-based experiences any conference-goer would be interested in to break free from work-mode," the agency said. Although the region is more focused on leisure tourism, MICE has gained some importance at Greenland scale. Events such as Future Greenland, to tighten relations between foreign investors and local entrepreneurs begin to tinker with the country's business ecosystem.
ALEXANDR A NORONHA
COMPANIES INDEX WWW.EVENTPOINTINTERNATIONAL.COM
TURISMO DE LISBOA VISITORS & CONVENTION BUREAU
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CONVENTION BUREAUX / TOURISM OFFICES
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