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More MACEOS Engagement Programmes Don’t Miss Out On BE Forum 2019


Ashwin Gunasekeran, PCEB CEO


E X C E L L E N C E VO l . 5 I N O. 2 I 2 01 9 ISSN 2289-893X RM10


Contents Vol. 5/No.2/2019 COVER STORY 02

Penang: The Events Destination To Be At Established in 2016, the Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) is tasked with the development and growth of the state’s business events industry, and headed by CEO Ashwin Gunasekeran.



Penang welcomes buyers from 11 countries



Celebrating Global Exhibitions Day 2019


Impressive stats for Malaysia and the world




MACEOS Raya Open House


MACEOS Members Appreciation Night



Cover Story


THE EVENTS DESTINATION TO BE AT Established in 2016, the Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) is tasked with the development and growth of the state’s business events industry, and headed by CEO Ashwin Gunasekeran.


enang is a place known worldwide for its food, culture, history, and just a great place to visit. While tourism in general has been on an exponential rise, the state wants to leverage on these factors and expand the business events industry. With a strong business events industry, the state will also benefit from the spillover business tourism and services. For example, in April, it was announced that the number of hotel room bookings for the past three years has grown by 285%. Among the popular business events in Penang are conferences, seminars, corporate meetings, and association meetings that are across sectors such as electrical & electronics, medical sciences, industrial, education and governmental. In view of that, the PCEB was set up about three years ago, under the leadership of CEO Ashwin Gunasekeran. Ashwin is a hospitality and business events industry veteran of more than 13 years. Much of his responsibilities at PCEB centres around setting



the strategic direction for Penang’s business events industry, establishing strategic alliances, expanding Penang as the leading business events hub in Malaysia and fostering partnerships with industry players. In 2017, he was appointed as the Deputy Chair of the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) Malaysia and he currently holds the position of Chairman of ICCA Malaysia. PCEB hit the ground running in terms of attracting business events to the state. “The Bureau ensures marketing and promotion activities are carried out at major business events tradeshows worldwide while conducting sales calls and roadshows in developing markets. “We also host familiarisation trips for media, potential organisers and event planners, especially for those who have not seen Penang as a business events destination,” said Ashwin. PCEB also recently introduced its business events support programme, known as Privilege Penang, at IMEX Frankfurt. It has two exclusive support programmes – Meetings & Conferences

The phenomenal rise of Business Events Penang continues to attract not only more international meetings and conferences into the destination, but also major investments from the private sector.




Cover Story

Current Challenges for the BE Industry To Flourish in Penang

and Incentives – that aims to further entice organisers to host their business events in Penang. “In addition, being an ICCA member, the Bureau has access to the ICCA database to source for leads to be brought into Penang. We also actively organise educational programmes with our partners, for example, BE @ Penang conference, Best Practices – Site Inspection, Bid Workshop and so on. “We are very excited to host the World Congress on Information Technology 2020 (WCIT2020) next year. This event is a key example of an international association meeting that Penang is targeting. WCIT2020 can easily attract about 4,000 delegates to the state and this will boost the local industries,” he said. “Other interesting summits we are looking forward to are the ICCA Asia Pacific Summit and BE @ Penang, both happening in December.”

Being Part of ICCA Allows PCEB to:

• Access international association meeting leads; • Participate in business exchange activities with

other destinations that are ICCA members; • Promoting Penang to associations and meeting planners in ICCA; and • Networking with fellow ICCA & association members.



Although the estimated economic impact numbers have been on the rise since PCEB was set up, Penang still faces a few bumps on the road in growing the business events industry exponentially. “From the travel perspective, Penang is still missing a few direct flights to and from key markets. One of them is India. Direct flights to our state are vital to ensure a seamless travel experience for business events participants. But with that said, Penang is still well-connected via Singapore, Thailand, China, Hong Kong, Taipei, Vietnam, Indonesia and Doha. “The state government is constantly working with different airlines to ensure the state sees more direct flights,” said Ashwin. Penang is not a very big state, so capacity is an issue that crops up when hosting a massive event. “Besides conference hotels, we are proud to have the world’s first hybrid solar-powered convention centre – Setia SPICE Convention Centre that is able to host 30,000 people. While the space is booked until 2026, we have another convention centre – Penang Waterfront Convention Centre – which is slated to open in 2023.” The Penang Waterfront Convention Centre is about 25,083 sq m with a 7,060 sq m multipurpose hall, the largest ever planned for Penang. The convention centre is part of the 381,000 sq m seaside development, The Light City, which will have a retail mall, two luxury hotels, a 28-storey office tower and two premium condominium blocks. “We will also see the expansion of the Penang International Airport that will serve as a low-cost carrier terminal. The new airport will have ample space for 40 aircraft, comprising 10 Boeing 777 aircraft, 26 smaller planes and four propeller planes. “Meanwhile, to cater to business travellers, more than 10 hotels are scheduled to open by 2022. I hope the industry players will see that Penang is serious in its aim to be a business events hub in Southeast Asia.”

PCEB Incentives

Working with the PCEB comes with a host of incentives. As mentioned, Penang recently introduced its business events support programme – Privilege Penang at the Penang Networking Dinner in conjunction with IMEX Frankfurt.


2,511 events, EEI RM1 billion

Projected EEI RM1.5 billion


1,251 events, estimated economic impact (EEI) RM808 million


2,733 events, EEI RM1.3 billion


Projected EEI RM1.8 billion


Curated to cater to Penang’s key markets, Privilege Penang has two exclusive support programmes – Meetings & Conferences and Incentives, which aims to further entice organisers to host their business events in the state. The programme introduces various tiers of benefits that are tailored to the number of delegates for an event. It also ranges from hosting welcome receptions and welcoming luncheons with Penang’s famed delicacies and souvenirs to half-day guided tours and cultural performances. To add greater value to Privilege Penang, PCEB has collaborated with its strategic airline partner – Malaysia Airlines. Qualifying events can enjoy benefits such as having Malaysia Airlines as the official airline for their events, discount rates for site inspection trips, hosting of speakers and buyers, special rates for inflight advertising platform and more. For details, visit www.pceb.my.





Penang Welcomes Buyers from 11 Countries The Penang International Travel Exchange exposes the state’s best qualities to BE industry leaders.


he Penang International Travel Exchange (PITE), a programme owned by Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB), returned bigger for its second edition this year with a wider range of buyers. Held from 8 to 12 October, Penang welcomed 80 buyers from 11 countries such as China, the Philippines, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Myanmar, Azerbaijan, US and the Middle East. Ashwin Gunasekeran, CEO of



PCEB, said PITE is a programme initiated with a vision to further expose Penang’s best qualities in enhancing buyers’ and the media’s experiences. “Throughout the five days, the BE Penang industry is committed to providing them first-hand involvement in the various activities and events that we have in store. With PITE, we hope to continue growing the number of events held in Penang and the economic impact of business events to Penang,” he said. “PITE consists of a well-curated itinerary where it sees hosted buyers being paired up with sellers though a B2B session for Malaysian business events and tourism suppliers to showcase their products and services to the hosted buyers and media,” said Yeoh Soon Hin, Penang State Executive Councillor for Tourism, Arts, Culture & Heritage. Organised by Penang-based Professional Conference Organiser (PCO) Apollo Conferences, buyers and the media were exposed to the various products in Penang through B2B

sessions and outdoor familiarisation trips with Penang’s business events industry players. PITE also saw a half-day forum with diverse speakers from the travel industry. There were also networking events in the form of a heritage hunt around Penang, and exciting gala dinners within the itinerary that further allowed engagement between the sellers and participants. Among the highlights of PITE 2019 were a gala dinner for the buyers on the iconic Penang Ferry, and networking events at The TOP and The Habitat. They also got to sample the UNESCO World Heritage Site and other parts of Penang through a different view and exposure. Widely recognised in various global accolades, Penang has set a name for itself as a bucket list destination not to be missed by both business and leisure travellers. This year, PITE had a total of 50 sellers from the Malaysia leisure tourism and business events industry.

Creating global platforms for industries, specialist markets and customers to trade, innovate and grow.

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Security Construction Food Oil & Gas

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6 - 9 March 2020 | PWTC & MITEC

31 Mar - 2 Apr 2020 | KLCC

23 - 25 June 2020 | MITEC

23 - 25 June 2020 | MITEC

13 - 16 July 2020 | PWTC

2- 5 October 2020 | KLCC

Environmental Technology Renewable Energy HVAC

7 - 9 April 2020 | MITC, Malacca

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21 - 24 September 2021 | KLCC

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Celebrating Global Exhibitions Day 2019 Recognising the importance of business events to the growth of nations.


eld on 5 June this year, the Global Exhibitions Day saw industry professionals, companies and associations from around 90 countries and regions celebrating the day in their own way. Based on UFI’s monitoring, the Global Exhibitions Day is the largest advocacy and awareness initiative of the exhibition industry around the world. The global exhibitions industry, which registered US$325 billion (RM1.36 trillion) in total business sales output in 2017, contributes US$198 billion (RM829 billion) to the world’s gross domestic product. This ranks it as the 56th largest economy in the world, making it larger than the economies of countries such as Hungary and Sri Lanka. There are more than 32,000 exhibitions held annually around the globe, featuring 4.5 million exhibiting companies and attracting over 303 million visitors. About 3.2 million jobs have been directly and indirectly supported by global exhibitions. Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Dr Ong Kian Ming said: “Outstanding international and local exhibitions have the potential to unlock endless possibilities for trade and investment in Malaysia. With a strategic location and excellent hospitality, Malaysia offers many world-class exhibition venues for convening businesses from all over the world. “Business events provide



opportunities for businesses to network as well as expand their customer base or diversify supply chains, increasing the level of trade for everyone. It is also estimated that every exhibitor spends at least RM44,057 per booth in an event, with a multiplier effect of 2.4 times to the country’s economy. This translates into benefits for our local industry. “Trade associations such as MACEOS give vibrancy to the exhibition industry, helping to ensure that we continue to raise our profile as a global venue for business events. I would like to thank all business events convenors who continue to bring the world to Malaysia through their work.” Meanwhile, Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik, Deputy Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister has this message: “The robust and vibrant BE industry in Malaysia is a well-known pull for business visitors travelling to the country, a testimony that business events are vital to the nation’s development and a solid contributor to the economy.

“According to statistics, business visitors spend three times the amount that of leisure tourists at an estimated RM7,454.00 per trip. This shows that a segment of tourism promotion needs to tune itself to business travellers, especially those coming for big scale exhibitions and conferences. “If this is properly executed, we are definitely on the right track to achieve 30 million tourists with RM100 billion in receipts next year as part of the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign. “I would like to commend trade associations, especially MACEOS, for diligently persevering in its efforts towards ensuring the continuous dynamism of the industry. We at the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture look forward to more ground-breaking milestones from our players be it exhibition organisers, venues as well as commercial brands.” Trade exhibitions support the economic growth and social development of a country and brings up new and existing industries, said MACEOS President Dato’ Vincent Lim.

Being the voice of the industry, MACEOS too observe the Global Exhibitions Day in Malaysia. In conjunction with the Global Exhibitions Day, MACEOS celebrated the recognition by spreading awareness on the importance of the business events industry – particularly exhibitions – to the country. The Global Exhibitions Day is celebrated on the first Wednesday of June every year. It was mooted by UFI four years ago. What MACEOS did this year is to make it more inclusive by raising appreciation of the importance and effectiveness of the exhibition industry, he said. Malaysia’s exhibition industry achieved approximately RM540 million for trade exhibitions and RM400 million for consumer exhibitions in estimated revenue in 2017 and has a total gross indoor size of nearly 198,000sq m in terms of venue capacity, making it the third largest exhibition market after Thailand and Singapore in Southeast Asia. On why exhibition space is important, he said, “Space is king in the exhibition industry. Those that have bigger capacity for exhibitions will capture a bigger market.” With the opening of the 45,000sq

m Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC), he is confident that Malaysia can surpass its ranking in next year’s statistics. A total of 288 exhibitions were held in the country in 2018, with 31% being trade exhibitions and 69% consumer exhibitions. This was a 39.7% nett sq m increase to 271,741sq m and a 10.9% nett sq m increase to 605,906sq m, respectively, from the previous year. MACEOS estimated the economic impact of the industry on Malaysia to be RM114.2 million. “Exhibitions are instruments to market goods and services, especially for small and medium enterprises. They’re also great investments, attracting market influencers who spend more, talk to more people and recommend more brands. “More importantly, exhibitions are a face-to-face medium and has the unique human element that’s essential to build business contacts,” he said, adding that it can be invaluable in creating customer satisfaction and loyalty. “For the time being, MITEC is sufficient for the exhibition industry, but looking at growth in the next 10 years, Malaysia will need a bigger exhibition space of at least double the

current size or close to 100,000sq m to meet the future demands of the industry.” MACEOS Event Management Acting Vice-President Lee Mark said, “The industry itself is skewed towards trade, but the spin-off for tourism is tremendous.” He noted that there is also a legacy component resulting from exhibitions, a domino effect where boosting tourism and enabling industry growth brings about intangible economic impacts that are not reflected in trade and transaction figures. “We have three key messages to our members, the general stakeholders and the government. To the government, we want to stress that the business events industry is vital for the nation. “For the general stakeholders, that exhibitions is about transformation through constructive growth and helping the growth of the country and its industries. “Lastly, for our members, we want to raise the standards and bring the excellence level up.” The focus for MACOES for 2019 to 2020 will be to expand its programmes to various parties outside of the business events industry, while at the same time, developing local providers for a multiplier effect in job creation and tax collection. The end goal is for exhibitions to culminate in a concept the association calls “festivalisation”, where different trade shows are held simultaneously with fringe activities, such as concerts, to sell Malaysia as a destination. This concept will take centre stage at the Business Events Forum 2019 held in October.





Impressive Stats for Malaysia and The World Data collected indicates a strong growth potential for the industry.


business sales than many large global sectors, including machine tools and medical & surgical equipment. It also accounts for US$325 billion of business sales and 3.2 million jobs as of 2018. The US$197.5 billion of total GDP supported by global exhibitions would rank as the 56th largest economy globally, larger than the economies of Hungary, Kuwait, Sri Lanka and Ecuador. In 2018, approximately 32,000 exhibitions sold nearly 138 million nett sq m across more than 180 countries.

he ever-growing BE industry has scored impressive numbers in recent years. MACEOS itself has gathered information for 2018 from 19 venues and exhibition organisers in the country. Meanwhile, other global associations shared their numbers, strongly indicating the immense potential for the industry to contribute greatly to GDP of many countries. According to UFI, global exhibitions directly generated more


31% 69% 877,647

Trade Exhibitions



Consumer Exhibitions

Nett SQM Exhibition Space Sold

Exhibitions generated nearly US$136.9 billion of direct spending, by visitors, exhibitors and additional exhibitions related expenditure. North America and Europe ranked first and second in direct spending, representing 44% and 34% of total global direct spending in 2018, respectively. Exhibitions welcomed nearly 303 million visitors and 4.5 million exhibitors in 2018. Europe ranked first in terms of total visitors with 112.0 million visitors and 1.3 million exhibitors. North America followed

In 2018,



of total Business Events

of total Trade Exhibition were held in Kuala Lumpur

with 91.2 million visitors and 1.6 million exhibitors. Meanwhile, in Malaysia, the exhibition industry achieved approximately RM540 million for trade exhibitions and RM400 million for consumer exhibitions in estimated revenue in 2017, making it the third largest exhibition market after Thailand and Singapore in Southeast Asia. A total of 288 exhibitions were held in Malaysia in 2018, with 31% being trade exhibitions and 69% consumer exhibitions. This was a 39.7% nett sq m increase to 271,741sq m and a 10.9% nett sq m increase to 605,906sq m, respectively, from the previous year. In 2018, 58% of business events, and 95% of trade exhibitions were held in Kuala Lumpur. Last year, Malaysia also hosted 126 conferences with 154,701 delegates; 333 incentives, corp meetings with 109,427 delegates; and 267 other

39.7% Nett SQM

INCREASE compared to 2017



Total Exhibition Space Sold (Nett SQM)




Number of Trade Exhibition & Space Sold (Nett SQM)













Number of Consumer Exhibition & Space Sold (Nett SQM)

BE related happenings with 203,952 delegates. On average, it was found that international conference delegates on average spent RM7,454 per trip while each exhibitor spent an average of RM44,057 per exhibition.

International conference delegates spent on average

RM7,454 Per Trip

Exhibitors spend on average

RM1 = RM111

RM44,057 Per Exhibition

Return on investment per every RM1 invested by the government

222 605,906

66 271,741

Trade Exhibitions

Consumer Exhibitions

Nett SQM

Nett SQM



154,701 Delegates



Incentives Corp Meetings

605,906 Delegates

10.9% Nett SQM

INCREASE compared to 2017

267 203,952 Other


Data Source: MACEOS industry Survey 2018 Submitted by 19 venues and 17 exhibition organisers in Malaysia





BE FORUM 2019 IS BACK The annual Business Events Forum returns on 23 October this year at an all new venue, the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC), the third largest MICE venue in the Southeast Asia region and the largest trade and exhibition centre in Malaysia. Its theme this year is BE Memorable and it will be launched by Muhammad Bakhtiar bin Wan Chik, Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Malaysia with a keynote address by Kamarul Bahrin Haron, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Astro AWANI.

Kamarul’s address, entitled “BE Evolution: Content & Festive Play” will be about learning how Content and Festive Play are instrumental in making business events a more innovative and value-adding experience. The forum will include BE Talk, sessions for a few selected speakers to discuss and exchange ideas on a given topic, and BE Pitch, a unique session for young innovators to pitch and present their bright ideas to potential investors and key stakeholders in the business events industry. Meanwhile, at the BE Marketplace, businesses and companies in the industry can exhibit and promote their services and products to those attending the forum. Already in its 4th edition, speakers at the forum will be key players in the industry ranging from professional conference organisers, destination marketing companies, audio visual suppliers and many more. To cap off the event, MACEOS will be hosting its Business Events Excellence Awards, recognising

UFI RELEASES NEW TRADE FAIR INDUSTRY IN ASIA REPORT UFI, in August, released the 15th edition of the Trade Fair Industry in Asia annual report, covering 17 locales, including Greater China and Southeast Asian markets, Australia, Cambodia, Japan, Korea, India, Myanmar and Pakistan. The report provides complete data on the development of trade fairs and supporting facilities in these regions up to 31 December 2018, with additional figures and commentary on likely trends for the following year. One key finding is that net space sold at Asian trade fairs reached 23.4 million net sqm,



which represents an average growth rate of 4.8% across 17 Asian trade fair markets. Research shows that 23.4 million sqm of space was sold by exhibition organisers to their clients in Asia in 2018 – up from 22.3 sqm in 2017. More than half of the total (59%) was sold in China – totalling 13.7 million sqm in net space, which is well over six times the space sold in Asia’s secondlargest trade fair market, Japan (2.15 million sqm).

industry talents who have made a huge difference this year. BE Forum 2019 is targeted at students, associations, event suppliers, government agencies, meeting planners, venue owners, destination management companies, non-governmental associations, exhibition organisers, convention organisers, convention bureaus and more.

By the end of 2019, venue capacity in Asia will be over 9.6 million m2, and the number of purpose-built exhibition venues operating in Asia will reach 232. Net space sold in Thailand increased by 3.8% in 2018. Australia and South Korea both expanded by 3.0%, while the market in Taiwan grew by just under 2%. Cambodia was the fastestgrowing trade fair market in the region in 2018 as space sold jumped by over 40%. Other Southeast Asian markets that outperformed the regional average included Malaysia (7.7%), Vietnam (6.4%) and Singapore (5.4%). Thailand, the Philippines and Indonesia posted growth lower than the regional average in 2018. The research was undertaken for UFI by Business Strategies Group in Hong Kong.

MALAYSIA JOINS IMEX AMERICA 2019 Malaysia returns to this year’s IMEX America 2019 by showcasing the country’s leading talents and offerings of the business event sector. IMEX America 2019 is set to take place today at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Las Vegas, Nevada from 10 to 12 September. Next year, Malaysia will be celebrating the Visit Malaysia 2020, also known as the “Visit Truly Asia Malaysia 2020” campaign, which was revealed by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on 22 July. In light of Visit Malaysia 2020, MyCEB would like to invite participants at IMEX America 2019 to participate and come to booth no. B4028 where exciting activities and knowledge-sharing about Malaysia and its multitude offerings await. This year, the participation of the Malaysian delegation at IMEX America 2019 is led by Datuk Zulkefli Hj. Sharif, Chief Executive Officer of MyCEB together with the participation of seven industry

MIHAS 2019 RECORDS EXPORT VALUE OF RM1.6 BILLION Malaysia International Halal Showcase (MIHAS) 2019 concluded on 6 April at Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC) with over RM1.6 billion in export value recorded, an increase of 5.7%. The figure included both the exhibition and International Sourcing Programme (INSP) sales. Organised by Malaysia External

partners; Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau, Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Sabah International Convention Centre, Destination Asia Destination Management Sdn Bhd, Panorama Holidays (M) Sdn Bhd, and Asian Trails (M).

Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE), MIHAS 2019 has attracted more than 1,000 exhibitors from 44 countries and attracted trade visitors from 80 countries. According to MATRADE’s Chief Executive Officer Dato’ Wan Latiff Wan Musa, MIHAS has proven to be the platform of choice for local and foreign halal businesses alike. Complementing the achievements were 150 presentations of fora, conferences and seminars held in conjunction

with MIHAS. In addition, there were 43 brand presentation sessions and 60 product launches at MIHAS 2019. MIHAS 2019 also made history with the visit of Yang Di-Pertuan Agong, Al- Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah. MIHAS 2019 was also visited by Raja Muda Selangor Tengku Amir Shah Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah. Among the key highlights of MIHAS 2019 were the INSP and MIHAS Awards. The INSP this year saw over 2,211 business meetings arranged for 610 local companies with 200 foreign buyers from 43 nations. Meanwhile, the MIHAS Awards has recognised 12 companies from both Malaysia and abroad for their creativity and innovation culture in the halal industry. A new segment for MIHAS 2019 was the Modest Fashion cluster that provided a platform for local and the region’s modest fashion players to highlight the industry areas of opportunities. The Modest Fashion segment was a product of a collaboration between the Bumiputera Designers Association and MATRADE.





KLCC INVESTS IN US ASSOCIATION EVENTS The Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre’s growing traction with the North American meetings market continues to blossom after hosting a recent immersive educational for AMC (Association Management Companies) Institute, and two high-profile US-based association events this year, the 29th International Congress for Conservation Biology 2019 and Asia Turbomachinery & Pump Symposium (ATPS) Industry Summit 2019. This solid investment in growing partnerships with North American based associations continues to gain momentum with four major bid wins that will culminate at KLCC next year, including the 19th International Congress on Infectious Diseases (ICID) 2020; World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) World Congress 2020; Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers’ (ICANN) 68th Asia Pacific Public Meeting 2020; and Asia Turbomachinery & Pump Symposium (ATPS) 2020. The venue also recently won

AIPC, ICCA AND UFI FORM GLOBAL ALLIANCE The International Association of Convention Centres (AIPC), The International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) and The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry (UFI) have launched a Global Alliance. The Global Alliance aims to create collaboration and generate more comprehensive and betteraligned benefits for the three associations’ members. The three associations will focus on four primary areas: educational content, research,



three US-based association bids from the oil & gas and education sectors to be held between 2020 and 2023. KLCC General Manager Alan Pryor said: “The US is one of the key target markets under our global industry engagement and business development programme and we have consistently invested in North America to help drive our business opportunities and expand in-market reach. “This year we have built on that momentum. “A first-hand experience is the most valuable tool to create global ambassadors who can influence and address perceptions in market,

creating passionate advocates who can engage audiences that are normally beyond our reach.” One such example is Association Management Ltd, President, Molly Lopez, CAE, who, following her engaging experience in Kuala Lumpur said, “The country’s beauty and the warm personalities, culture and hospitality of the people in Malaysia exceeded all expectations. My immersive experience was eye opening. The food was beautiful, creative and delicious, and the service was impeccable. In a very short period of time, I have become a champion for Kuala Lumpur!”

standards and advocacy, starting with engaging members in a series of educational exchanges and knowledge sharing. Discussions about industry standards, correct terminology and best practices will also be consistently encouraged between members. In addition to the immediate outcomes, the partnership aims to enhance the credibility of the industry as a whole by providing a vehicle for the development of greater consistency within a mutually agreed industry framework. “This will not only enhance overall industry performance but

boost our collective credibility amongst other industry sectors.” The new Global Alliance between ICCA, UFI and AIPC will represent 2,800 member organisations from 100 countries.


THAILAND LAUNCHES ‘MEET SPECIAL BONUS’ The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has launched the “Meet Special Bonus” incentive for corporate event planners in a bid to secure more large scale events. The incentive is available for planners holding an event with a minimum of 100 international delegates who stay in Thailand at least three nights and use a venue recognised by the Thailand MICE Venue Standard (TMVS). Groups using this incentive, which runs until September, will receive a THB 50,000 (£1,260) to help with organisational costs. According to the latest statistics from TCEB, Thailand welcomed 594,633 overseas MICE visitors in the first two quarters of 2019, which is an increase of 8.6% from the same period last year. Thailand also rose to fifth place on the ICCA World Rankings in the Asia category and has since won 10 major bids for national and international events. “The improved ranking, the constant development of MICE infrastructure and attractions, and overseas confidence in selecting Thailand show our dynamic to redefine business experiences and generate a stronger return on investment,” said TCEB president, Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya. Of the secured bids, four are international events taking place in the country this year, including the 33rd International Epilepsy Congress 2019 for 4,200 delegates, the 45th International Council of Traditional Music, for 1,000 delegates and the 8th Education International World Congress. In conjunction with the growing number of international events, TCEB has announced the opening of new event venues across the country, including True ICONSIAM Hall, a 2,000 sqm space located on the seventh floor of ICONSIAM, Bangkok. Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre will open in 2022 following its renovation to add on 55,000 sqm of event space. Additionally, three five-star hotels are set to open, providing organisers with more choice.

For the first half of the year, Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau (MyCEB) an agency under the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture Malaysia, successfully won a total of 301 business events with an estimated 570,741 delegates comprising 208,555 international delegates and bringing in an estimated RM3.9 billion in economic impact. These events will happen between 2019 and 2028. Among the winning bids are the University of Scholars Leadership Symposium (USLS 2019), the 7th Asia Pacific Urban Forum (APUF 7) 2019, the 19th East Asia Regional Council of Schools (EARCOS) Teachers’ Conference (ETC 2021) and the Conference of International Society of Travel Medicine (CISTM 2021). Highlights of these four bids won include the University of Scholars Leadership Symposium (USLS 2019) which was held on 1 August that gathered a total of 1,500 delegates comprising 1,200 international delegates as well as an estimated economic impact of RM42.6 million. This is followed by the upcoming 7th Asia Pacific Urban Forum 2019 (APUF 7) on 15 October that is expected to garner 1,500 international delegates amidst 5,000 total delegates, and an estimated economic impact of RM25.2 million. The 19th East Asia Regional Council of Schools (EARCOS) Teachers’ Conference (ETC 2021) will take centre stage on 24 March 2021, inviting 800 international delegates and accumulating an estimated economic impact of RM16 million. The spotlight for 19 May 2021 is on the Conference of the International Society of Travel Medicine (CISTM 2021) that is expecting to welcome over 1,600 international delegates and contributing RM37.5 million in estimated economic impact. For the upcoming Visit Malaysia 2020 (VM 2020), Malaysia has lined up 37 business events as of July which anticipates the convergence of more than 44,600 delegates primarily from healthcare, telecommunications, science and technology industries.





MACEOS Raya Open House The association hosts a cosy get-together to celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri with guests and partners.


he lively, melodious refrains carried by P. Ramlee’s golden voice was one of the many festive tunes heard as guests made their way to the entrance of the cosy Rumah Pahang hall at the spacious Malaysian Agro Exposition Park Serdang for MACEOS’ Raya Open House 2019. The atmosphere was as warm as the noon sun, charged up by members’ energy and presence in excitement to gather again. Some familiar faces as well as new ones were spotted amongst the crowd of nearly 160 that had turned up for the Raya lunch on June 20. MACEOS president Dato’ Vincent Lim welcomed all members and guests with hearty wishes of “Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri” to Muslim members while extending a warm welcome to guests from MATRADE and promptly ushered everyone to hit the buffet lines. The tender lemang in bamboo leaves, flavourful beef rendang, sayur lodeh and other classic delicacies were savoured as everyone mingled, exchanged greetings and caught up with one another. As he was making his way around the various tables, Dato’ Lim said events like this is also a good opportunity for members to meet with government officials. Chief executive officer of MARDI Corporation Yazid Hamid said they were pleased to host what he described as an “intimate” event for MACEOS in his welcome speech, adding that there were altogether four Raya open houses at venues of different sizes happening on that very



same day, including one where the Prime Minister was attending. He also invited fellow MACEOS members to host their events at MAEPS. Several members at the event echoed the benefits of belonging to an association like MACEOS. MAEPS sales and event manager Fred Malintan said MACEOS is a good platform for marketing themselves in the industry. “It doesn’t only gather venue providers, but suppliers and organisers.” He also said with a chance to host, other members can gather for a closer look and experience at the venue’s facilities to be considered for future events. “For instance, our park’s venue facilities also bring people closer to the outdoors.” ExpoWorks project director Edmund Chan said: “MACEOS did a very big favour for all the organisers in Malaysia, especially for the sales and services tax (SST). We’re very thankful to the association for this. “When the GST was abolished, we were supposed to be charged the SST, even for the exhibitors. But MACEOS managed to speak to the various government agencies, including the Finance Ministry to get it excluded for our industry.” For TwoJ’s chief operation officer Fairul Syazwan Ghazali, he said he has found new partners for exhibitions and new collaborations through joining MACEOS.

Being a part of MACEOS also means having the chance to contribute towards the industry. Hawtz Dotz Sdn Bhd’s creative director Joseph Chong said his company had a chance to help organise the Malaysia Business Events Awards of Excellence (rAWr Awards). “We proposed the contents and did everything from A to Z,” Chong said. Coming to a MACEOS event for the first time was Dato’ Grace Lee, managing director of Milestone Production which has only recently joined as members. “I’m looking forward to know more about how Malaysian events work as well as about policies, government relations, and how to enhance the experiences for in-bound visitors coming into Malaysia (for conferences and events) as a key factor in boosting our economy.” The Raya open house was also a good opportunity for companies’ executives at the next succession level to gain exposure to the industry through networking and getting to know other members. Account executives Lun Wong and Thyra Pang from Touch Concept Sdn Bhd. Wong said, “This is a relaxed event at a nice place. For us, we can meet more people from different areas of the industry. For example, earlier, I’d just met with folks from a PR agency.” Pang shared her sentiments on the importance of attending MACEOS events. “Events like these are a platform to connect to everybody to

share our market and exchange info on what we do.” she said. “We do look forward to business of course but we’re here to meet with everyone.” Also present at the event was the team from Malaysian Gifts and Premium Association (MGPA). “We’re here to support this event,” said its honorary president Alan Ong. As Raya this year also coincided with the durian season, several members gathered outside a gazebo adjacent to the Rumah Pahang to tuck in to a free flow of the king of the fruits. It was as a satisfying close with a dessert that was sweet and rich.





MACEOS MEMBERS APPRECIATION NIGHT A warm reunion for all to share their updates, network and business development.


t was a night of reunion, of learning and the partaking of some of the best of Malaysian food and desserts made even more festive by the exquisite ambience of the restaurant, De.Wan 1958 by Chef Wan and artfocused surroundings of the venue, The Linc, KL. This was evident in the ready smiles and group photos taken before and after the event for a night to remember. The annual MACEOS Members’ Appreciation Night commenced with a warm welcome by MACEOS Membership chairman Melvin Shu to all attendees, including members and non-MACEOS members. This was followed by the launch of the BE Forum video. The BE (Business Events) Forum 2019 is one of MACEOS’ major events that will be held on October 23, 2019 at MITEC, Kuala Lumpur. Taking the stage next was MACEOS president Dato’ Vincent



Lim who, in his opening speech, urged members not to miss out on the upcoming BE Forum as well as the first Business Events Award which will be held on the same day as the BE Forum this year. He deemed member participation as important since the committee members “worked very hard to make the industry shine and to share more information with the government”. Expounding on the updates as to the direction of MACEOS was Vice-President Eric Ho who continued sharing the rest of Dato’ Vincent’s speech. MACEOS has developed its new strategies moving forward, he said, and the association will focus on four pillars – Innovation, Development, Education and Advocacy (I.D.E.A.). Innovation is about transforming BE in the advent of Industry 4.0 seamlessly and MACEOS members were urged to stay competitive and to continue fostering innovative

business ideas and services to continue uplifting overall industry standards. For development, the industry infrastructures must evolve to include “responsible production to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns”. In terms of the education pillar, there is a need to “shape the future of business events by nurturing, enabling and empowering talents” to adhere to the industry’s best practices. Ho urged members to continue signing up for MACEOS’ professional training sessions recognised by international standard bodies to develop their skills and for the chance to learn something new. For the pillar of advocacy, MACEOS’ objective is to be a “catalyst of economic development, delivering unprecedented value to enrich the nation”. As MACEOS is the only BE trade association in the country, Ho said it is doing its best to lobby the

government through consistently conveying two clear messages: first, BE is a vital industry for the country; two, MACEOS would be strategically playing its role to reform BE in favour of the industry’s growth, be it for the association, members’ businesses or the country’s wealth. Ho also revealed that MACEOS had recently met the Minister of Federal Territories Khalid Samad recently to seek support to establish “a dedicated focal point for the BE industry players” in the form of a bureau in Kuala Lumpur where most business events are held. It is also in the midst of arranging a meeting with the Immigration Department of Malaysia to resolve matters pertaining to the Professional Visit Pass (PVP). Next, Dr Isaac Lim, the honorary treasurer of the Malaysia TRIZ Innovation Association conducted a TRIZ workshop preview. This workshop will be offered by MACEOS in the future to help MACEOS members advance in their problem solving and innovation skills. Towards the end of the presentations, the audience learned (with eager anticipation) that the

evening’s canapes and delightful desserts were sponsored by Big Onion Food Caterer, also a new MACEOS member. Its managing director Liang Foo Khun briefly introduced the audience to the established catering company. He was followed by De Wan’s managing partner and chef Andre Shum who showcased the venue banquet hall’s stunning 360˚ projection mapping onto the walls and ceiling with enchanting scenes and designs. Making the event more memorable was the presence of MACEOS members from the Northern, Southern and Central regions, and especially Sarawak and Sabah members came all the way to join in the camaraderie. Sabah Tourism MICE manager Georgina Jinu shared that having been a part of MACEOS in the last three years has helped her team learn more about the industry and how it is evolving. What she appreciated about MACEOS was that “we work closely with one another and we’re not stingy in guiding each other,” she said, adding that MACEOS has also held events in Sabah and Sarawak for members.

“Currently, we’re just focusing on how to separate the business industry from tourism. Being here, we are supporting each other and building closer relationships. We update ourselves as we need help to know how to grow the BE industry in Sabah. “We also feel like a big family, like being a part of a circle we could move around in,” she said. The dinner then commenced with traditional and delectable Malay delicacies such as Kerabu Pucuk Paku with Kerang, Kambing Kuzi, Asam Pedas Sea Bass, Gulai Lemak Udang Nenas Nyonya Style, and Daging Rendang Selangor, among a variety of colourful Malay rice dishes, satisfying all attendees who networked and chatted the night away.



Profile for Harini Management Services Sdn Bhd

Business Events (BE) Malaysia|Vol 5|No 2|2019|PCEB  

BE (BUSINESS EVENTS MALAYSIA) is the official publication of The Malaysian Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers...

Business Events (BE) Malaysia|Vol 5|No 2|2019|PCEB  

BE (BUSINESS EVENTS MALAYSIA) is the official publication of The Malaysian Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers...