The Event Issue 11

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Issue 11 | 2018


+ CREATIVE EVENT SPACES Venues Stepping Away From The Ordinary

+ TIME TO TEAMBUILD Exciting Tech and Fresh Innovations


An Ever-Growing Business-Events Destination



Stage is Set for Lilizelas


Maboneng a Runaway



A FRESH WAY TO TEAMBUILD Why you should book your next event or teambuilding activity with HintHunt or The Gallivanting Goose.

CREATIVE EVENT SPACES Kim Crowie scours SA to find the most unique venues for hosting a conference, meeting or party.

MAGICAL KENYA TRAVEL EXPO Cheri Morris shares her captivating experience in East Africa’s business events capital.


ICCA Launches 55 Year Report


A Fresh Way to Teambuild


Creative Event Spaces


Industry Snapshot


Magical Kenya Travel Expo


Ideal Regions for Industry-

Specific Events


Nelson Mandela Bay: Business Events Made Easy


Senegal: Business Events Made Easy

NELSON MANDELA BAY We place a spotlight on a growing region not often considered for business events


Events to Diarise


Association News


Directory of Advertisers



STAGE IS SET FOR LILIZELAS The Lilizela National Tourism Awards will take place on 17 November 2018.


he South African tourism industry is poised for a night of celebration as the Lilizela National Tourism Awards take place on 17 November. The sixth edition of the awards will take place at the Sandton Convention Centre and will be hosted by renowned media personalities Leanne Manas and Xolani Gwala. “Tourism is about people. South Africans are not only warm and welcoming

but they are also passionate business people who put a considerable amount of effort into making sure that South Africa remains a competitive tourism destination for any traveller. The Lilizela Tourism Awards are about acknowledging and recognising these individuals for the sterling job they do every day in contributing to our economy through the high levels of service excellence their businesses offer to travellers,”

says SA Tourism CEO Sisa Ntshona. The provincial series of the 2018 awards wrapped at the end of September. Over 500 finalists were selected nationwide from more than 1 365 entries. Of the total vote, 80% came from members of the public as well as travel platforms such as TripAdvisor and TGCSA’s Tourism Analytics Programme. The remaining 20% was based on scores from a panel of high-level judges under the supervision of Grant Thornton.

CTICC WINS 15 BIDS Cape Town International Convention Centre has been awarded 15 international conferences in the last six months.

• • • • • •


he CTICC is on a winning streak, and will be hosting a number of conferences from 2018 to 2024. Many of these events will be hosted on the African continent for the very first time. “We are extremely proud to have won these bids, which are testament to the CTICC’s competitiveness as a venue and Cape Town’s attractiveness as a business event destination. These wins do not happen without the concerted effort of the CTICC team and the dedicated collaboration between internal and external stakeholders,

including the Western Cape Convention Bureau and City of Cape Town,” says Julie-May Ellingson, CEO of the CTICC. The venue has already hosted two of these events: the International Congress of Linguistics in July, which brought 800 delegates to the Cape, and the 500-delegate ICAO Global Aviation Gender Summit in August. The following conferences are still to take place: • Association of International Schools in Africa Conference | November 2019

• • • •

• •

International Council on Systems Engineering | July 2020 International Federation of Surveyors | May 2022 World Congress of the International Health Economics Association | July 2021 Congress of the International Association of Paediatric Dentistry | June 2023 HIV Research for Prevention Conference | October 2020 3rd Ministerial Conference of the Partnership for Action on Green Economy | January 2019 World Federation of Paediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies | 2022 World Self Medication Industry | October 2020 General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union | August 2024 World Congress of the International Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association | 2024 Asian Racing Conference | 2020 General Assembly of the International Organisation for Standardization | September 2019

Everyone went the extra mile and worked together with our team as ‘partners’ to ensure the success of our Annual Congress event. Amanda Amanda Stops Stops

CEO CEO South SouthAfrican AfricanCouncil Councilof ofShopping ShoppingCentres Centres (SACSC) (SACSC)

Nestling Nestling in in the the shadow shadow of of the the majestic majestic Table Table Mountain, Mountain, and and overlooking overlooking the the spectacular spectacular Atlantic Atlantic Ocean, Ocean, the the CTICC CTICC isis aa magical magical place place where where the the imagined imagined becomes becomes real, real, visions visions turn turn into into strategies, strategies, consumers consumers become become customers, customers,and andstrangers strangersfrom fromacross acrossthe theglobe globebecome becomecolleagues, colleagues,partners partnersand andfriends. friends. So Somuch muchmore morethan thanaamulti-purpose multi-purposeevent eventdestination, destination,this thisAfrican Africanicon iconcombines combinesexpansive expansivevenues, venues,impeccable impeccable service, service, cutting-edge cutting-edge technology technology and and the the finest finest global global cuisine, cuisine, to to transform transform your your convention, convention, conference, conference, exhibition, exhibition,banquet banquetor ormeeting meetinginto intoan anextraordinary extraordinaryexperience. experience. For For more more information, information, or or to to book book your your event event at at the the CTICC, CTICC, call call +27 +27 21 21 410 410 5000, 5000, email email or or visit visit




A RUNAWAY SUCCESS Maboneng precinct has received global recognition as a livable, chic space that attracts local and international foot traffic.

© Hemis / Alamy Stock Photo


orbes International named Maboneng one of the world’s coolest neighbourhoods, beating counterparts in cities like London, New York and Paris. Gauteng Tourism has launched several developments that have made Maboneng a steadfast visitor attraction. This is no mean feat for a precinct that just a few years ago suffered urban decay and was seen as a crime hotspot. “It is even more impressive considering the calibre of alternatives Forbes International would have considered before including Maboneng in its list of top 12 coolest places in the world. The only other South African neighbourhood that made it is Kalk Bay in the Western Cape,” says Gauteng Tourism Acting CEO Yoland Ruiters.

To encourage residents of the province to explore their own backyard, the destination is rolling out the #GPShot’Left campaign, which kicked off with a Maboneng celebration. “Research indicates a sizeable portion of arrivals in Gauteng are from visiting friends and relatives. We, therefore,

need more and more of our residents visiting and being exposed to exciting spaces in the province such as Maboneng – it is only through familiarising themselves with the destination’s leisure offerings that they would become champion hosts and great Gauteng brand ambassadors.”

CEPA NEW BOARD MEMBERS The Council of Event Professionals Africa has announced additional board members, as well as a new logo design.


EPA has welcomed new members to their board, creating a full complement of leaders for the organisation. The new Vice Chair is Gift Luthuli of Gintan Luthuli Associates,“whose contribution, through his experience and knowledge of the events industry especially as a Safety, Security and Risk Consultant for numerous events in South Africa and internationally, will make him an indispensable part of the Board,” according to a recent

statement from CEPA. Other board members include the likes of SAACI’s Glenn van Eck, EXSA’s Sue Gannon, IFEA Africa’s Pauline Maketa, ATKV Resorts’ Minister Kganyago, and several others. CEPA held a new logo competition recently, which was won by Brad Montgomery of Ultimate Data Sciences. His prize was a two-night stay for four people with the compliments of ATKV Resorts. “We also would like to thank Brad for providing CEPA with a completely new CI totally free of charge. Your comments

on the look and feel would be greatly appreciated,” Melanie Sillince, Chair of Marketing and Secretariat at CEPA added. The organisation was formed in May 2018 by professionals from EXSA, SAACI and IFEA Africa in a move to promote excellence and competence in the industry. As such, they have developed an online certification programme with Emerit. 32 Candidate Members have already signed up, with four who wish to challenge for a higher level CEPA. For more info, visit




CEO Adele Forsyth and Amanda Olsson, Head of Group Sales & Marketing at Misty Hills Country Hotel, Conference Centre & Spa, tell us why this venue is suited to any event, large or small. Why is Misty Hills a popular destination for events? Misty Hills Country Hotel, Conference Centre & Spa embodies the ethos of Africa. Set on 60 acres of lush indigenous botanical garden, Misty Hills is well positioned, against the traffic, with easy access to Johannesburg, Sandton and Pretoria. For delegates flying in, Misty Hills is only 15 minutes from Lanseria Airport and 45 minutes from ORT on the N14. Misty Hills is located on the border of the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, and offers delegates the opportunity to conference away from the hustle and bustle of the city. It is one of a few establishments in Gauteng that has 23 versatile conference venues; with the largest, The Pelindaba, seating up to 800 delegates. Our multipurpose, 1 000m2 Exhibition Centre not only stands alone, but also provides our customers with the opportunity to confex in one location. Misty Hills also caters for team building and can accommodate up to 5 000 people on our fields. Off-roading capabilities are also available.

placed great emphasis on sustainability and Misty Hills was able to showcase our established initiatives of commitment to our environment and greening, which include composting, waste recycling and the use of grey water, the planting of indigenous vegetation, and the usage of local materials. Through our Carbon Neutral Initiative, we plant one indigenous tree for every 10 delegates who conference at Misty Hills and issue the corporate guest with a Carbon Certificate of Appreciation. At this event, some delegates participated in the actual planting. Another event hosted at Misty Hills was the MIT Sustainable Development conference, which comprised both local and international delegates. Privacy, security and confidentiality were paramount to the success of this conference, and key to the selection was that the venue had strong female leadership (our CEO is female) and that it embraced and exhibited sound environmental practices, which included the responsible usage of game meats.

What recent conferences have you hosted?

What sets you apart from other venues?

In July 2018, Misty Hills proudly hosted the annual SAACI Congress. The organisers

Misty Hills is set in a registered indigenous botanical garden with abundant birdlife

and bird viewing platforms. Our lush surroundings provide the delegate with a sense of being in the country. We are great patrons of African art and nestled in the grounds are numerous original artworks. When visiting the Hall of Kings in the 500-seater Carnivore Restaurant, one is exposed to statues and paintings of prominent African royalty and leaders. The property is also home to our award-winning Spa in Country, which boasts its own conference room. Misty Hills hosts several events throughout the year including tastings, yoga, and high teas. Misty Hills Country Hotel, Conference Centre & Spa is only one of the properties within the Recreation Africa Group. Besides the Carnivore Restaurant, the group also owns Kedar Heritage Lodge ( Visit or for more info



ICCA LAUNCHES 55 YEAR REPORT The International Congress and Convention Association has launched their latest report: A Modern History of International Association Meetings – Update, which includes information from 1963 to 2017.


he latest report from ICCA explores statistics and analyses major trends in the market. The organisation has identified exponential growth in the number of international meetings that have taken place. The ICCA Association database has grown by 10% each year, meaning the number of meetings has doubled every 10 years. The database currently documents 225 243 meetings between 1963 and 2017, with 65 182 (29%) taking place in the period of 2013-2017. Europe remains the most popular region for meetings, consistently attracting the highest number. That’s said, its market share has declined from 71.8% by 1967 to 53.6% in 2013-2017. Asia has seen slow and steady growth, with an average increase of 2% per decade to its current market share of 18.5%. The average number of participants per meetings continues to decrease as documented five years ago. “From 1 263 in the period of 1963-1967 to 409 in 2013-2017, we can see a significant decrease of 66% in the average number of participants at international association meetings,” the report explains. Meetings with 50-249 participants also form the majority (62%) of the market share. Despite the average meeting size shrinking, the overall number of participants continues to rise, owing to the number of meetings taking place annually. The estimated total number of participants for all meetings has grown from just over 2 million in 1963-1967 to 25 million by 2017. The USA has held the record in participant numbers, while London has leap-frogged into the top 5, overtaking Berlin in participant numbers.

Sunrise shot of Downtown Dubai and Burj Khalifa. ICCA Congress 2018 takes place here. Image by David Rodrigo via Unsplash Regional rotation is a growing trend, as is technological meetings, the latter of which has shown the highest relative growth in the last 55 years. “Medical Sciences has always been the most popular sector with 16.6% of all meetings in the last 5 years, even though this subject matter – together with Science – has lost terrain to Technology in the last two decades.” The average length per meeting has also dropped gradually from 5.78 days in the 60s to 3.65 days by 2017. Additionally, the number of annual meetings has skyrocketed from 36.1% in the first 5 years of the report to 59.8% in the last 5 years. “We can say that the relative number of meetings taking place less than once every 2 or more years are decreasing.”

Venue Trends Universities are a popular venue of choice these days. This has showed a sharp increase in the last 15 years and has become the second most popular venue for association meetings. Hotel meeting facilities have also gradually increased at the expense of the Conference/ Exhibition Centre – however this trend has been somewhat reversed in the last lustrum (2013-2017).

ICCA Milestones • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

1963: ICCA is founded in Paris 1967: First ICCA bylaws are signed 1969: First Head Office established in The Hague 1972: 160 member companies from 41 countries 1983: 22nd ICCA Congress, attendance of 193 1989: ICCA Congress takes place in Cairo, Egypt 1990: First female president: Jacqueline Pietri 1995: ICCA launches new logo, used until 2002 1996: First ICCAWORLD website launched 1998: First regional office in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 2004: First ICCA Statistics Report launched 2007: Head Office moves to Amsterdam 2011: 50th ICCA Congress in Leipzig, attendance of 1 000 2017: 1 100 member companies in over 100 countries; biggest congress ever with 1 260 delegates. 2018: 57th Congress to take place in Middle East for first time (Dubai) from 11-14 Nov.



ANOTHER DEFINING EVENT FOR IT&CMA IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific 2018 Brings On Yet Another Defining Event for MICE and Corporate Travel


his year’s budding programme included a record 29 networking functions and hosted activities and a solid education line up of 21 knowledge sessions helmed by over 50 industry thought-leaders. The exhibition and business components featured some 316 destinations and corporates, the largest showings to date with a 35% increase in booth take-up and expansion. Says TTG Asia Media Managing Director Darren Ng: “Business objectives remain the main focus of IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific in providing MICE and Corporate Travel-centric opportunities for all our exhibiting suppliers and buyers to achieve their goals for the region. The advocacy of knowledge-based sharing is also a key pillar at our events in advancing the intellect and innovation within our growing industry, and we are happy to see so many destinations and brands take up captive social functions to personally get to know their audience.” Sessions were crafted closely to address current market trends, challenges, and shifts in priorities. The main keynotes were presented by Martin Nydegger, CEO, Switzerland Tourism; Oscar Cerezales, COO, MCI Asia-Pacific; Nichapa Yoswee, Senior Vice President – Business,

Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB); and Daniel Chua, Vice President – Meetings & Incentives, Singapore Associations of Conventions and Exhibition Organisers (SACEOS). These set the tone towards the transformation of audience engagement as being top-of-mind becomes a more competitive field. Some insights were centred on the industry’s burgeoning demand for MICE Onboard cruises and the incentives and initiatives meeting this potential. “Supporting the first Asian MICE Cruise Conference is an important step for us because developing Maritime and Cruise education in Thailand is a current priority. Current negotiations are underway with the government to nurture this high-value industry that has immense potential economic impact. We aim to do even more for future editions of the conference,” said Pairach Piboonrungroj, Associate Dean of College of Maritime Studies and Management, Chiang Mai University. The all-new Experiential Marketing Forums and Incentive Travel Forums explored new and innovative ways to design ‘wow’ experiences, while the coveted Association Days in partnership with GainingEdge, IAPCO, ICCA, SITE, and World PCO Alliance revolved around

long-term impacts on host destinations, examining how GDPR may affect the way associations manage member data, as well as a hot debate between proposers and opposers of PCOs. Eight of the most relevant CTW Asia-Pacific forum sessions revolved around the best of corporate travel challenges, solutions, and best practices. The IMEX, MPI, and MCI Future Leaders Forum returned to IT&CMA 2018 as well. “One highlight of this year is the launch of our new brand Thailand: Redefine Your Business Events to project Thailand as a co-creator in delivering exceptional experiences for MICE travellers when our industry redefines its way of thinking and action to meet shifting business demands, and the Thailand 4.0 policy, which will make Thailand stay ahead of the competition,” says TCEB’s Senior VP for Business, Nichapa Yoswee. TCEB hosted the Official Opening Ceremony and Welcome Reception themed Thailand Limited, featuring a colourful night of uniquely Thai entertainment, local cuisine, and hospitality.





Kim Crowie chats with two innovative companies pushing boundaries in the teambuilding arena.

Images Courtesy of HintHunt

HINTHUNT A company that had its beginnings as the number one attraction in London in 2012, HintHunt came to SA in October 2013 at the Old Biscuit Mill in Cape Town, and now has three locations including one in Johannesburg. Essentially an escape game, the initial concept of which was coined many years ago in Japan, HintHunt has been the top local attraction on TripAdvisor since 2015 and has grown immensely since its inception. Stephen Schutte gives us more info.

Why is HintHunt so unique as a teambuilding exercise? We put different team members from different departments in a room together and all of a sudden they come out of a room and for weeks and weeks afterwards, they’re talking to each other and inadvertently building rapport. This

is actually a spin-off of the game; some of our biggest clients are Allan Grey, Old Mutual. When departments are mixed up and put in a room together, they come out laughing and screaming and there’s just a sense of camaraderie – they don’t really tell anyone else what goes on in the room because they want you to go and try and beat the room.

What has happened in the last year? Mid-2017 the V&A Waterfront approached us and said, “We’ve got an opening at Jubilee Hall, we’ve heard so much about you guys”. During that time we also shot to the number one attraction on TripAdvisor for two years running. Trip Advisor actually had to redesign their algorithms because people were asking why this game had more reviews than Table Mountain! We’re still number one, but we’re now in an indoor activities-type segment.

So we opened this year in April at the V&A and we’ve launched new games – we’ve got a shipwreck theme and submarine rooms, which are probably the most hi-tech game rooms in the world. Then we’ve also got VR escape room set up.

How do you cater to corporates? We’ve got a bar and a corporate area. There’s so much parking, and there are so many restaurants nearby so corporates come and perhaps do a strategy session at HintHunt or additional games like Minute To Win It. In the new year we will launch a sister company called Directors of the Extraordinary. This will change the face of teambuilding, where we’re going to gamify gin or wine tasting, for example. Basically, we will bring the teambuilding experience to you. So we’ll go live with that in January 2019. To find out more, visit

THE GALLIVANTING GOOSE A wild goose chase the likes of which you’ve never seen before, this fascinating teambuilding game offers scavenger hunts in and around Cape Town or Johannesburg, using an app to gamify the experience. Fun, immersive and educational, activities are tracked in real-time (including a live scoreboard), with teams working together to creatively complete challenges. Larissa Sparg shares more.

What does a typical TGG event look like? Imagine a game of cranium, your funniest home videos and charades getting together in a smart phone – that’s a game with The Gallivanting Goose. On the day, teams meet at a designated point, depending on the game they are playing. After teams are taken through instructions and an initial trial run, the game is on. A standard game is 90 minutes long. Once the time is up and the game is over, everyone meets to



What trends have you noticed in the sector recently, and how does TGG feed into these?

where everyone can be included b) allow participants to experience an iconic venue or destination and have fun c) results driven; they want measurables and not just an ‘opskop’. A game with TGG meets all these needs. It allows for people to come together and operate out of their usual office hierarchies – it allows skills and talents folks usually don’t get a chance to display in an office environment, to come to the fore. Laughter and fun certainly breaks down many barriers between people – and in this game, one laughs, a lot! Because the games can be custom built to any venue, clients get to experience a place of their choice. The game allows for new conversations to

Just making use of a smartphone to take part in a wild goose chase game is very much on trend – we as humans are addicted to our devices! Clients are looking more and more to use a teambuilding event to cover multiple ground: a) a team building element

start, and for people to become more familiar with one another outside of the work environment, which is often a less threatening place. The results from a game can also help an employer gain many insights into a team’s dynamics. To find out more, visit

go through results and final bragging rights are announced. All images taken during a game are the client’s for the keeping post-event.

What are the challenges of running a teambuilding company in a competitive market? Sticking to your knitting, constantly refining your offering, and being clear on your unique selling points. Figuring out how to be smart in meeting your client’s needs and remaining true to your brand, all at the same time.

Some teams take the competition further than others and come dressed up for their game | Image by Bruce Boyd Photography



Emily Moon River Lodge

CREATIVE EVENT SPACES Kim Crowie gathers some of the trendiest and most breath-taking venues for hosting events and corporate meetings.


here are literally hundreds of event spaces across the country, and it’s often such a mission to find one that’s beautiful, functional, flexible, and unique all at once. These days, everyone’s in search of something different and new – from a delicious gourmet dish to a space that’s designed to create a full sensory experience. Whatever the case may be, we bring you a selection of the most edgy and sought after venues across South Africa.

Chalkboard A café setting that’s ideal for small creative gatherings, Chalkboard is a restaurant and craft beer bar adjacent to The Bioscope in Johannesburg. The walls and table Chalkboard

tops are writable chalkboards, making it ideal for brainstorm meetings and artistic expression. Here, visitors can dine on comfort food at affordable prices, and then head upstairs for a movie – complete with bottomless popcorn and hot chocolate options on ‘movie weather’ days. Chalkboard provides an assortment of pizzas for events served buffet style: agree with the event planner on a tab limit, and only get billed based on what is consumed.

Emily Moon River Lodge An exclusive, family-run lodge set on the banks of the Bitou River in Plettenberg Bay, Emily Moon comprises ten suites


Emily Moon comprises ten suites and a multipurpose venue set in an indigenous garden, allowing for up to 100 guests for functions.

and a multi-purpose venue set in an indigenous garden, allowing for up to 100 guests for functions. Emily’s Restaurant offers homegrown and locally sourced organic gourmet meals, while Simon’s Bar, located just above, offers spectacular riverside views and some of the best wood-fired signature pizzas. This venue is ideal for those in search of a company pow wow or retreat.

Emily Moon River Lodge

Hallmark House Situated in the all-too-trendy Maboneng precinct, Hallmark House is designed by David Adjaye, one of the top architects globally and offers visitors layers of experience. On its rooftop, one finds the restaurant and bar, while underground is a jazz bar and coffee shop. The floors in between comprise penthouses, apartments and a hotel. The state-of-theart conference centre offers space for up to 50 delegates.

Emily Moon River Lodge

Marble A restaurant that celebrates quintessential South African fare, Marble is located in the food hub of Rosebank, Joburg, and utilizes a grand wood-fired grill as the focal point of the space. An acclaimed selection of artisans collaborated with the founders to design its interior, including Damien Grivas, Peter Mthombeni, Krisjan Rossouw, and Mervyn Gers. The devil truly is in the detail of this venue, and will enthral art patrons and enthusiasts, from its handwoven macramé screen and ceramic tableware, to avante-garde photography shot exclusively for Marble. Awarded chef David Higgs brings the delicious diversity of cooking with fire to life in this establishment, which can host between 50 and 220 guests for events. Marble

Hallmark House




On the menu at Tjing Tjing House

Riverine Rabbit

Cocktails At The Munro

Pier Place

operated by Chef Patron Ash Heeger. The clean, modern design speaks to the space’s ethos and contemporary appeal. It offers chefs table experiences for up to 6 people, and also caters to events on request. Meal ingredients are locally sourced, seasonal, sustainable, and cooked over hot coals in a Josper Oven.

canapes and cocktails for 250. With old world charm and vintage grandeur, Rovos Rail’s steam locomotives and Edwardian station are an enchanting way to spend an afternoon or evening.

An exciting new venue located in Cape Town’s Foreshore, Pier Place has an exclusive rooftop garden area, and a dedicated common area with canteen and meeting facilities. It forms part of a new initiative called Shared Office Space, which also offers a boardroom at North Wharf. The indoor space is ideal for parties, networking events or banquet dinners, and their graffiti mural of Table Mountain is a real feature for the room. The rooftop area has a natural feel with Astroturf and wooden furnishings, as well as a splendid view of the city.

Riverine Rabbit A fine dining venue that opened in Cape Town in October, Riverine Rabbit is

Pier Place

Rovos Rail Whoever thought an unforgettable event could take place on a train? Rovos Rail offers planners a unique experience on their Events Train, which offers a threehour circular trip around Pretoria, or a one-way journey to any destination within eight hours’ rail travel time from Pretoria. They can host four-course sit-down dinners for up to 120 guests, or

The Munro Boutique Hotel Those in search of sheer luxury will find The Munro an absolute delight. It offers a modern take on old European design, and is steeped in greenery both inside and out. Located in the heart of Houghton, Johannesburg, it has magnificent panoramic views of the city, and is actually a three-story Victorian conservatory surrounded by waterfalls, exotic plant life and marble passageways. While they are not open to the public for day or evening visits, they do offer conferencing options

Pier Place Rooftop Venue


More Venues to tickle your fancy Although these didn’t make the final cut, they’re definitely worth a mention for their sheer uniqueness: • Akinat: a quaint, fairytale garden venue in the Helderberg • Cathedral Peak: for unparalleled Drakensberg views | • Colourlab: a prestigious and modern Cape Town rooftop venue | • Floreal: incredible food and exclusive wines in Stellenbosch | •

The Munro Boutique Hotel

Tjing Tjing Torii

and special events venues. They can cater for between 10 and 100 guests, and offer a formal dining room with your own exclusive chef. The Mediterraneanstyle terrace allows for a more casual atmosphere.

sophisticated Momiji Lounge is located on the second floor, and is available for drinks from 5pm till late. Japanese Whiskies and a unique wine list complete the experience, and caters for parties of up to 20. Perhaps the best know part of Tjing Tjing is its rooftop bar, which offers visitors bespoke cocktails in a casual setting. The Tjing Tjing Rooftop caters to private events on Sundays and Mondays.

Tjing Tjing House This unique Cape Town space was recently renovated and redecorated, and now offers visitors four distinctly different experiences and venues. On the ground floor, Tjing Tjing Torii provides a casual Japanese street food experience, in a space inspired by the multiple layers of old and modern Tokyo. Tjing Tjing Momiji is a simple, calm space designed for savouring Kaiseki – a multi-course gastronomic experience for up to 16 guests per sitting. The moody yet

Pier Place Canteen

House of H: a parking lotcum-gourmet eatery in the Mother City | Intundla: Pretoria lodge for teambuilds, events, and game sightings | Jack Black’s Brewing Co: cosy brewery ‘Taproom’ in the Cape | Morrells: a magical castlelike boutique estate in Northcliff | Strandkombuis: West Coast gastronomy with B&B and event area |

Whoever thought an unforgettable event could take place on a train? Rovos Rail can host four-course sit-down dinners for up to 120 guests, or canapes and cocktails for 250.

Rovos Rail



INDUSTRY SNAPSHOT We dig into the hot topics in the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions industries across Africa.

VENUE SPOTLIGHT Hilton Named Africa’s Leading Brand Hilton was named Africa’s Leading Brand, Africa’s Leading New Resort, and Africa’s Leading Business Hotel at the Africa and Indian Ocean World Travel Awards for 2018. They took home a total of 14 awards at the ceremony in Durban on 6 October. Jan van der Putten, Area Vice President, Africa and Indian Ocean for Hilton said, “This recognition, coupled with the 13 other awards won by our hotels in the region, is testament to our commitment to deliver exceptional experiences – every hotel, every guest, every time.” To see the full list of winners, visit CTICC Appoints New CFO The Cape Town ICC has announced the appointment of Wayne De Wet as their new Chief Financial Officer. He is a qualified Chartered Accountant and holds a Bachelor of Accounting Science Degree, as well as Honours in Accounting Science. He will develop and implement the CTICC’s financial strategies, and provide financial leadership as well as supply chain management, among other things. Previously, he was CFO at Cape Town Tourism and Commercial Manager at Sun International.

“Wayne comes with a wealth of experience and knowledge, having worked in the tourism and hospitality sectors, as well as several state entities and the private sector. He also comes at an exciting time in the development of the CTICC with the addition of CTICC 2 and we know that his expertise, experience and leadership will help steer the company in an even more positive direction,” says Julie-May Ellingson, CEO of the CTICC. “I was seeking a new challenge to grow and expand my experience. Being in finance allows me to work across many sectors applying similar principles,” says De Wet.

TOURISM UPDATES Africa Tourism Board Soft Launch The Africa Tourism Board announced that its first soft launch meeting will take place during World Travel Market in London. The meeting will take place on Monday, 5 November at 2pm at the Excel Centre, North Gallery Room 4. Private stakeholders, VIPs, government officials, and media are invited to attend. The association will act as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to and from the African region. The African Tourism Board provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its members.

Hilton Cabo Verde Sal Resort won Africa’s leading New Resort

Wayne de Wet, the new CTICC CFO They also plan to enhance sustainable growth, value and quality of travel to, from and within the continent, and will offer leadership and counsel to member organisations. The board hopes to expand on opportunities for marketing, PR, investments, branding, and establishing niche markets, among other things. For more info, visit UNWTO: Creating Smart Cities The UNWTO Conference on City Breaks: Creating Innovative Tourism Experiences (15-16 October 2018) concluded in Valladolid, Spain, with a call for cities to become smart tourism destinations. This means that tourism governance and the digital economy collaborate to offer travellers diverse and unique experiences across these spheres. Attendees and speakers analysed how exactly to react to the growing trend of city breaks as leisure experiences. Public-private partnerships, the inclusion of local communities, and the creation of smart destinations are necessary for urban locations that want to cater to the demands of hyper-connected and hyper-informed tourists. As technological advances continue to permit the creation of smart destinations, DMOs need to start managing urban


tourism in every complexity. Because of their part, tourism policy makers should use smart destination tools to review the impact of tourism on the profitability and sustainability of a city, and place the destination at the centre of policy changes. “We need a better knowledge of the basics behind the existing demand for city break experiences. Smart destination tools are our methods to obtain this knowledge,” said Councillor for Tourism and Culture of Valladolid, Ana Maria Redondo. Dr Walter Mzembi Battling Cancer The former Minister of Tourism and Hospitality for Zimbabwe and candidate for UNWTO Secretary General is currently undergoing medical treatment for cancer in South Africa. He says he is frustrated with the African tourism family for not assisting him when criminal charges have been brought against him by the new government in Zimbabwe. “It’s a seemingly sophisticated witch hunt meant to discredit his legacy with the UNWTO, where he with distinction led the Commission for Africa from 2013 to 2017 for two consecutive terms,” Juergen Steinmetz of eTurboNews said. It remains to be seen what the outcome of these circumstances will be.

TRADE SHOW TITBITS World Congress of Audiology Debut on African Soil The 2018 World Congress of Audiology took place for the first time in Cape Town from 29-31 October at CTICC, and brought around 800 delegates to the city, with an estimated economic impact of ZAR15.3 million. The programme covered a range of topics such as adult and paediatric hearing aids, diagnostic audiology, e-Health, electrophysiology, special populations and a focus on the future priorities for the profession and science of audiology. “South African audiologists through their organisations including the South African Association of Audiologists (SAAA) and the South African SpeechLanguage-Hearing Association (SASLHA), in partnership with the South African Society of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, won the bid to host this world event in audiology,” Susan Strauss, National President SAAA and Chairperson of the local organising committee of the conference.

Some of the components to consider when building a Smart City “This is the first time in the 65 years of their existence that the International Society of Audiology has their meeting in Africa.” WTM Africa Launches Tourism Investors’ Summit Following the success of the WTM Africa Tourism Investors’ Forum in 2018, the show has announced that it will expand on this initiative in order to highlight investment opportunities on the continent. The WTM Africa Tourism Investors’ Summit will take place from 11-12 April 2019, and will allow potential investors to scope projects and opportunities across Africa, as well as meet key stakeholders they can partner with. The summit will focus on trends in investment, the kinds of opportunities available in Africa, policy, case studies

© WTM Africa 2018

and breakaway session designed to open dialogue between private and public sector participants in order to form practical solutions for investment. “At a time when Africa is celebrating a new open skies policy and the African Union heads of state have launched a continent-wide free trade agreement, travel and tourism in Africa are poised to expand, accelerate and flourish in an unprecedented manner. However, to support this growth, there will be a need for significant investment in human resources, infrastructure, ICT, equipment, security, logistics, marketing capacity and more – to ensure that those travelling on the continent have the best experiences possible,” explains Michael Sudarkasa, CEO of Africa Business Group, and Co-Convener of the summit.



A young Maasai boy herds goats into the kraal All images © Cheri Morris

A Maasai woman captured mid-song


27 September to 5 October 2018 saw the Event explore the multifaceted travel wonder of Kenya on a week-long familiarisation Tour, as well as produce the inaugural Digital Daily News for East Africa’s largest travel-trade gathering. Cheri Morris shares her experience.

The FAM Tour I bubbled with excitement as I peered from plane window onto Kenya National Park. Although steeped in the fast-falling shadows of dusk, I could make out proud African baobabs waving a warm welcome, “Karibu Kenya!” Before us lay ten days of epic exploration courtesy of Kenya Tourism Board (KTB). After timely baggage collection at Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, we were delivered to the only city-hotel bordering Kenya’s National Park, Ole Sereni. It wasn’t until the the following day that I realised what an awe-inspiring view lay behind the blackout curtains: undulating flatlands of grass contrasted by burly clouds, interrupted only by the lackadaisical concession of zebras, buffalo,

and buck taking their morning drink. Ole Sereni’s restaurant looks directly onto the watering hole and its tail-swinging users. After a leisurely breakfast, we met with KTB PR Officer Erick Omenda to plan the next few days of video shoots. Erick became our personal portal to the unmissable intricacies of Kenyan travel. He had us eating and drinking like locals — Nyama Choma (skewered chunks of seasoned goat meat) for Gary Randall, the Event Business Manager, and creekcaught Red Snapper for me, both served with traditional sides of kachumbari salad, ugali, and pints of Tusker beer. I caught up with General Manager Karl Hala to hear about Ole Sereni’s impressive conference space expansion. Pleased with our first video

interview, I embraced the heat of the day by sampling Ole Sereni’s wellequipped gym and then shook it with a dip in their impossibly-blue pool. The next day we caught the firstclass train from Syokimau to Emali; a journey that cuts straight through the National Park and affords passengers panoramic views of untouched expanses. From Emali, we then clambered into two game-drive vehicles that would deliver us to the dusty orange gates of Amboseli National Park. We were delightfully received by a welcoming committee of galloping giraffes and the peaks of Mount Kilimanjaro emerging from thick clouds. Upon arrival at Amboseli’s splendid Ol Tukai Lodge, we watched in awe as an entire herd of elephants crossed our


path. From there we explored an authentic Maasai settlement, stopping only to breathe in flamingo-speckled vistas, greet grazing buffalo, and watch as four large elephant bulls had a Mexican stand-off. We were treated to a spectacle of traditional Maasai song and dance. They welcomed us into their homes and offered insight into age-old customs. After parting ways with some KSH at their crafts market, we sucked on Tuskers while watching the auburn orb sink into the rolling valleys from the most glorious lookout point I’ve ever seen, Observation Hill. The next morning, we caught a Safarilink flight straight out of Amboseli (an airstrip amid wallowing hippos and galumphing elephants) onward to the Kenyan coast of Watamu. We arrived at the Moroccan-style castle of beachside magic that is Medina Palms and were treated to cocktails and fresh oysters. The following day, our group meandered through the Arabuko-Sokoke Forest amid the ancient archaeological wonder of the Gedi Ruins. Our cups adequately filled with historical information dating back to the 11th century, we made our way down to UNESCO World Heritage Site Malindi-Watamu Biosphere Reserve to learn about the intimate relationship between mangrove forests, marine life, and local livelihood. That evening, we enjoyed a poolside gourmet fish braai and spent some hours dancing in the heart of Watamu’s vibrant nightlife. I arose early to shoot

a video interview of Medina Palms’ Director Max Cheli to find out what value exhibiting at MKTE offers his brand. An unrivalled breakfast in a beach villa of dreams was followed by a visit to the Watamu Turtle Watch Centre, where we learnt about marine conservation efforts and saw a green turtle and loggerhead turtle recovering in the clinic. I twisted our amazing KTB host’s arm, Christine Kinyeru, to take us down to Garoda Beach so I could submerge myself into to the toasty-fresh waters of the Indian Ocean. It was in that moment that I realised: Kenya isn’t just a game-holiday destination. It’s pristine beaches, balmy weather, and warm ocean make Kenya a serious contender for beachy-getaways.

The Expo Upon return to Ole Sereni in Nairobi, we had a day’s leisure visiting the famed Giraffe Centre (I kissed a giraffe) and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, where we got personal with orphaned baby elephants. That evening, I finished compiling Day 1 of the inaugural MKTE Digital Daily News which would be sent to almost 6000 inboxes the next morning. With the Day 1 news successfully delivered, Gary and I arrived at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) shouldering camera equipment and ready to submerse ourselves in the action-packed agenda. KICC’s world class event space came to life; stands were abuzz with back-toback meetings between exhibitors and

KICC comes alive with the buzz of 190 exhibitors


hosted buyers from across the globe, and seminars were underway. Day 1 saw the launch of an innovative new feature, Market Presentation Platforms. These educational seminars unpacked various markets over the course of the event— including the US, Chinese, African, Indian, and Australian markets — in an effort to help businesses better understand what these markets are seeking from their travel experiences. Between live entertainment, a media briefing by Kenya Tourism Board’s CEO Dr Betty Addero Radier, and extravagant lunches on KICC’s picturesque rooftop terrace, Day 1 and Day 2 saw the shooting of six more video interviews starring the likes of Jacinta Nzioka for Kenya Tourism Board, Chris Mears for African Travel & Tourism Association, Gladys Kogei for Kenya Wildlife Service, Azahar Hussain from Fingerprint Events, Peter Olale from Intercontinental Hotels, and Rosemary Mugambi from Serena Hotels. Each explained why they continue to exhibit at MKTE and what an incredibly successful initiative it has proved to be, not only for Kenya’s tourism industry, but that of its neighbouring countries as well. MKTE 2018 hosted 25 countries, 150 Hosted Buyers, 190 exhibitors, and over 20 international media personnel. KTB Chief Executive Officer Dr Betty Radier says increased participation is a testament to the growing recognition of MKTE as Africa’s show of choice, as well as Kenya’s global stature as a meetings, incentives, conference and exhibition destination.

Many business cards were exchanged



The Soweto Theatre in Gauteng © Peter Hassall

Southern Sun Elangeni and Maharani



South Africa has a host of cities with unique industry sectors they can leverage to attract forward-thinking meeting planners.


country with nine robust provinces and plenty to offer in terms of tourism, South Africa has event venues large and small to cater to the industry’s many demands, in cities and towns across the nation. We look at some of the cities that are ideal for hosting events in each region, the major industries associated with them, and other local attractions one can use in order to bring more conferences, meetings and exhibitions to SA.

Eastern Cape A province famous for its unspoilt Wild Coast, the Eastern Cape is a place of spectacular scenery. Nestled in the Amatola Mountains is the first wine estate in the province. Port Elizabeth is one of its most attractive cities for business events, boasting the Boardwalk ICC and other smaller venues. The ELICC also attracts business events to East London, while sleepy Grahamstown comes alive during the winter for the National Arts Festival and Standard Bank Jazz Festival. The Eastern Cape has a massive automotive industry, and a busy port called Deep Water Harbour. Other towns of note are Mthatha, Graaf Reinet, Cradock, and Port St Johns. Popular Venues: The Boardwalk, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, ELICC, Rhodes University, Nelson Mandela

University Conference Centre Major industries: Manufacturing, automotive, agriculture, financial services, real estate, banking

Free State Known as the heartland of South Africa, the Free State is an oft unexplored region for small to midsize events. The two major cities are the capital of Welkom and the cultural and economic epicentre of Bloemfontein, also known as the City of Roses. The annual SAACI Congress took place in Bloem a few years ago, and other consumer events take place regularly, including WildKOSfees, a celebration of local wine and game dishes, the Round The Island Race – the biggest inland regatta in SA, and several diamond auctions and related conferences. Other towns of note are Odendaalsrus, Harrismith, Kroonstad, Sasolburg, and Parys. Popular Venues: Mont D’Or Hotel, Gold Guest and Conference B&B, African Footprints, The Windmill, Ashwood Guesthouse and Spa Major industries: Mining, agriculture, manufacturing

Gauteng The centre of business in SA and Africa, Gauteng offers many venues from high-class to quirky, extra-large to small. Johannesburg

boasts the renowned Sandton Convention Centre and the Expo Centre, while groups like Tsogo Sun offer several hotel venue options for the discerning planner. Also of note is Pretoria (in Tshwane), where Gallagher Convention Centre and the CSIR ICC are situated. OR Tambo International Airport serves the African region with international and connecting flights, while places like Soweto and Maboneng are attracting more and more attention as both event hosts and tourism hot spots. Popular Venues: Sandton Convention Centre, Gallagher Convention Centre, CSIR ICC, Expo Centre, TicketPro Dome, Kyalami Race Track, JSE, Randlords Major industries: Appliances and electrical supplies, iron, steel, chemical products, machinery, automotive, academics (Tshwane)

KwaZulu-Natal Known for its pristine beaches, beautiful forests, and rolling hills of sugar cane, KwaZulu-Natal is the Zulu homeland and a firm favourite for domestic tourists. A port city known for its conferencing capabilities is Durban, which has hosted many a highprofile event including Africa’s Travel Indaba and The Loeries, at the world-famous Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention


Port Elizabeth

Centre (Durban ICC). Other cities of note are Pietermaritzberg, Richards Bay, and St Lucia – located in iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Popular Venues: Durban ICC, Southern Sun Elangeni and Maharani, Meander Manor, Mount Edgecombe Conference centre, Cathedral Peak Hotel, Monks Cowl Golf Resort Major industries: automotive, pulp and paper, chemicals and petrochemicals, food and beverages, mining of titanium dioxide, zircon, iron, steel and ferroalloys


Century City Conference Centre

its capital, with a host of gourmet food and beverage options. Other places of note are Dullstroom, Sabie, White River, and Hazyview. The region is also perfect for unique incentive packages, offering a range of different activities from white river rafting and other extreme sports, to spa and wellness getaways, and game sightings galore. Popular Venues: Critchley Hackle Lodge, Graceland Hotel, Crystal Springs Mountain Lodge, lekoa Lodge, Casambo, Olifants River Lodge Major industries: agriculture, hunting, forestry, mining, quarrying, manufacturing

One of the least populated regions in South Africa, Limpopo is home to the vast expanse of the Kruger National Park. Major towns include Polokwane, Makado, and Bela-Bela, while other places of note are Hoedspruit and Tzaneen. Limpopo is the gateway into Africa, and borders Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. The region’s lush natural beauty and unparalleled wildlife offerings make it an easy choice for intimate corporate getaways, incentive travel trips, and luxury spa and wellness experiences off the beaten path. Popular Venues: Tzaneen Convention Centre, Fusion Boutique Hotel, Palala Boutique Game Lodge, Musina Hotel & Conference Centre Major industries: Manufacturing, mining, agriculture estates, food and beverages, game hunting, citrus, tea and coffee plantations

North West


With vast open skies and desert expanses to boot, one might never consider the Northern Cape an events destination – but it is! Cities like Upington and Kimberley are hidden gems in the making, with the region surprisingly also offering a range of wine and cognac tasting options to

A lush land with beautiful tourist attractions – God’s Window, Blythe River Canyon, and Kruger Park to name a few – Mpumalanga is fast growing its business events capabilities, and is ideal for small corporate retreats and company pow wows. Mbombela (Nelpruit) is


A region that hopes to significantly grow its business events marketshare in coming years, the North West offers a number of great venues and towns as hosts. Its proximity to Gauteng lends it further clout in attracting high-profile conferences and meetings, while Sun City is the optimal destination for both entertainment and business. Cities of note include Rustenburg, Potchefstroom, Klerksdorp, Hartbeespoort, and Mahikeng. Popular Venues: ATKV buffelspoort, Sun City Resort, Dikhololo, Mount Grace Country House and Spa, Valley Lodge, Kedar Country Hotel, Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge Major industries: agriculture and agroprocessing, arts and culture, tourism, mining, energy and green economy, ICT

Northern Cape

discerning travellers. The Big Hole in Kimberley attracts many to this mining feat, and events for up to 160 can even be held at the spot. Other cities of note are Sutherland, where the SKA and MeerKAT arrays are built, as well as Richmond, Loxton, Fraserburg, Vosburg and Hondeklip Bay. Popular Venues: The Big Hole, Kalahari Gateway Hotel and Conference Centre, Orange Valley Guest Farm, The Desert Palace Hotel and Casino, The Flamingo, The Kimberley Club Major industries: diamond and copper mining, agriculture and agro-processing, tourism, fishing, astronomy

Western Cape A veritable destination that’s proved time and again its weight in event gold, the Western Cape is a sought after international and local trade show and conference hub. Its focus on knowledge sharing and tourism combines the best of both worlds to offer unparalleled experiences to travellers, both domestic and long haul. Although Cape Town is the preferred city for hosting conferences, especially at the CTICC, places like Stellenbosch and Knysna are picking up steam. Of particular note is the way in which the Cape has leveraged their recent water crisis to bid for and host water- and environmentallyled conferences in the future. Popular Venues: CTICC, Spier, Century City Conference Centre, Grand West, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens Major industries: agro-industries, chemicals, entrepreneurial mining and jewellery, international finance, metals, transport and machinery, techno-industries, textiles, clothing, leather and footwear, tourism, wholesale finance, wood, paper and publishing, media and motion pictures



LOERIES OFFICIAL RANKINGS The Loeries 2018 Official Rankings have been released, providing a comprehensive overview of the performance in Africa and the Middle East.

Loeries Live Events Winners

The Loerie Awards at Durban ICC. Image by Jethro Snyders via Gallo Images

Three live events took home awards at this year’s Loeries. The Bridal Uniform, which won a Silver Loerie, was a unique activation in which Impact BBDO Dubai and UN Women raised awareness of child brides in Pakistan by hijacking the biggest bridal show in the country to show that not all brides should be celebrated. The never-before-driven Devil’s Peak Pass in Knysna was the media launch site of the Mercedes Benz X-Class. The remote location meant that everything for the event had to be brought to the venue, and the design had to be based on natural surrounds. WWP Group took home a Bronze Loerie. Another Bronze Loerie was awarded to Cullinan for their Give Art Life campaign for ABSA. The theme was celebrated by the African Art community at the l’Atelier gala event, where art pieces were created and brought to life on human canvasses and in activations at the event, among other things.

ABSA’s Give Art Life Campaign


he Loeries has released its annual Official Rankings which provide a comprehensive overview of the performance across the advertising and brand communications industry throughout Africa and the Middle East based on performance at the 2018 Loerie Awards, held in Durban in August. This year, for the first time, the Loeries included points for Finalists in calculating its Official Rankings. In the past, points were only awarded for Bronze winners and above.

“While there can be many ways of analysing any competition, we have provided a thorough and fair process to accurately report on the results of the awards,” says Loeries CEO Andrew Human who believes that the inclusion of Finalists has had a positive impact on small agencies and countries in the region by giving them recognition for their achievements. This year Sanlam is the top brand, having won 16 Loeries, including a Grand Prix. Chicken Licken and Kimberly-Clark

take second and third place respectively. The top three Agencies are: Joe Public United, Impact BBDO Dubai and King James Group; and the top three Regional Agency Groups are: TBWA\, Ogilvy EMEA and Joe Public United. Joe Public United has taken the top position in the large agency category, while King James II has the highest ranking among medium-sized agencies, and Utopia tops the small agency table. For the full list of rankings, visit




EXPLORES AFCFTA IN MORE DEPTH The forum, which took place on 2-3 November in Lagos, Nigeria, brought stakeholders from across the continent together.


According to ECA studies, Africa is less industrialised today than it was three decades ago. Through AfCFTA, industrialisation will help create employment for Africa’s growing youth population, thereby improving livelihoods, access to education and health. The agreement is also expected to lead to booming multi-sectoral growth in areas including agriculture, where the AfCFTA will provide opportunities to drive agri-business and provide access to new regional markets for farmers and regional agro-value chains. With regard to access to electricity, about 600 million Africans still lack access to electricity. The AfCFTA would help build momentum on establishing an integrated set of platforms and partnerships to drive regional power systems, accelerate energy access for productive use, and bring down the costs of Africa’s power generation. The trade forum provided a platform to discuss Africa’s participation and ownership of the AfCFTA objectives and examine how intra-regional trade can enable prosperity in Africa. Here, stakeholders determined how nations can move to real action and implementation.

he Africa Trade Forum 2018, hosted by Nigeria’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, and co-organised by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), The Rockefeller Foundation, and the African Union Commission (AUC), took place on 2-3 November 2018 in Lagos. The Forum brought together stakeholders from across the continent, from political and governance spheres, the private sector and entrepreneurs, philanthropies, academia, researchers, and development partners, to discuss the process for realising the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The AfCFTA was signed in March 2018 by 44 African countries and, if ratified, will become one of the world’s largest trading blocs. It is also the biggest trade agreement signed since the World Trade Organisation (WTO) was established, bringing together 1.3 billion people with a combined gross domestic product (GDP) of more than $2 trillion in a single market. The agreement aims to provide improved competition and lower business costs. The Forum’s purpose was to look into the challenges and opportunities of the

AfCFTA in individual African states, and to better understand how AfCFTA can drive economic development and prosperity on the continent for all of Africa’s citizens. “With the actual emergence of the AfCFTA in 2018, the decision was taken by the government to mobilise stakeholders in the Nigerian economy to understand its details, interpret its opportunities and reorganise our economic system for coherence and coordination,” says Dr Okechukwu Enelamah, Nigeria’s Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment. The AfCFTA offers a long-awaited platform for Africa to ramp up its industrialisation through various channels, including the elimination of on intra-African trade. Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) Executive Secretary Vera Songwe says in an age of trade wars, Africa is sending a strong message that trade deals and reforms can be approached through consensus-building and cooperation. “The speed at which countries have signed and are now ratifying the AfCFTA agreement underscores the momentum behind this African flagship initiative,” the ECA Chief said.

The trade forum discussed the implementation of the AfCFTA © AUC

The African Continental Free Trade Agreement was signed in March 2018 © African Union Commission





More business meetings and learning than ever at record-breaking IMEX America.

Landmark Week for the Industry

Attendees eagerly anticipating the start of IMEX America 2018 © IMEX Group


he eighth IMEX America closed on 18 October and set a series of new records. The largest ever IMEX, expanding into an additional hall, created space for over 3 500 exhibitors representing 150 countries. A significant factor in this growth was the arrival of more than 60 new booths, while 81 booths took larger spaces. Extending into a third hall has benefitted the show in many ways. “It’s allowed the investment made by exhibitors in colourful, creative booths to shine through. Many have chosen to immerse IMEX America attendees in their culture, legacy and values,” says Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group. “Also, the Inspiration Hub, the Live Zone and the food court are now on the show floor, bringing everything together in one place.” A record of over 13 000 participants took part in the event, and among them were 6 000-plus attendees

including more than 3 300 hosted buyers. Over 70 000 appointments were made, including 64 000 individual appointments and booth presentations – an increase of 7%. In addition, 70% of appointments had RFPs attached. The show this week also further expanded the range of its features. By offering a remarkably large and diverse range of experiences, it met the growing demand for interactive live experiential activities that are redefining the scope of the industry itself. From C2 International’s Cloud Lab and the wide variety of engaging concepts in the Live Zone to the Zen Space and trying out event technology in the Tech Zone, there were new experiences right across the show floor. Exhibitors and buyers noticed a vibrancy which Kirstin Gibson, SVP of Spargo, captured when observing, “there’s great energy coming from the attendees – it’s inspiring.”

“This has also been a landmark week for our industry,” says IMEX Group Chairman Ray Bloom. “[The] announcement at IMEX America that globally, business events generate over US$1 trillion in direct spending, matching the consumer electronics sector in size, puts its economic contribution into clear perspective and places it among the world’s leading business markets. The research, the Global Economic Significance of Business Events, reflects great industry co-operation, led by the Events Industry Council.” The week began with Smart Monday, powered by MPI. Smart Monday’s carnival theme and the Six Star Innovation and Experience Lab - including Sophia the lifelike robot - added new interactive elements. The Association Leadership Forum, created by ASAE, brought together over 120 association CEOs and executives on Monday, while the Executive Meeting Forum for corporate meetings strategists attracted 40 senior executives from companies including EY Group, McDonalds and Wells Fargo. Together with the SITE Young Leaders Conference, these events on Smart Monday drew more than 1 000 meeting professionals to the show for this day dedicated to learning. At the first MPI keynote, Julius Solaris, editor of EventMB, shared fascinating and often moving revelations around legacy, with excerpts from The Power of Events – 29 Inspiring Examples to increase the Impact of Your Events and Create a Long-lasting Legacy, an extensive IMEX research report produced by EventMB. The new white paper, published in association with ProColombia, is now available to be downloaded at


23 Interest in this has been remarkable – the report has been downloaded by more than 1 600 people.

Legacy Comes to Life The legacy theme, the IMEX Talking Point for this year, was also reflected in education sessions, through many sustainability and CSR initiatives, in the Future Leaders Forum and particularly by the Legacy Wall on the show floor where exhibitors, partners and IMEX staff shared their stories and thoughts about their legacy. IMEX America maintained its commitment to reducing waste and supporting the local Las Vegas community. The show encouraged participants to avoid single-use plastic products, to make use of water refill stations, to donate books to a local literacy project, and to build hygiene kits for Clean the World. The focus on health and wellbeing continued with the annual #IMEXrun, guided meditation sessions led by mindfulness expert Lee Papa and, new this year, through the Caesars Forum Walking Challenge by Heka Health, encouraging attendees to count their steps. The education programme also achieved several new records. 256 education sessions delivered by 150 speakers, equal numbers of men and

Shake it at the Live Zone © IMEX Group

women, took place during the week, of which 96% were assigned with CEs for CMP certification, the highest ever percentage. IMEX America is widely known for its networking opportunities. More than 30 IMEX and partner events including Association Evening, SITE Nite North America, MPI Foundation Rendezvous, the EIC Hall of Leaders Reception, and Shamrock Invitational Golf Classic brought thousands of people together, as well as raised hundreds of thousands

of dollars for industry foundations. “I’d like to thank all our industry partners for their continuing support. This has been a tremendous week for business, for the industry and for the future of meetings and events. The worldwide industry has been in Las Vegas this week and I look forward to welcoming everyone back to Sands Expo again in just 11 months IMEX America will take place on 10-12 September in 2019 and in 2020 from 15-17 September,” Ray Bloom concluded.

IMEX in Numbers • • • • • • •

Julius Solaris of EventMB delivers passionate keynote on creating legacies © IMEX Group

6 352 total show attendees 13 500+ total participants 70 000+ appointments 3 327 hosted buyers from 63 countries 1 102 buyers from 37 countries 3 500 from 150 countries 132 press from 14 countries



Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium

NELSON MANDELA BAY Situated on the shores of the Eastern Cape, Nelson Mandela Bay has a great potential for hosting conferences and trade shows.


he Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality is located along the Algoa Bay shoreline of the Eastern Cape, and comprises the city of Port Elizabeth, the towns of Uitenhage and Despatch, and surrounding rural areas. The region is midway between Cape Town and Durban, and is South Africa’s fifth largest city in population. The ports of Port Elizabeth and Ngqura attract a wide variety of businesses

to the area. It is also the African hub for automotive manufacturing, and is home to Volkswagen, General Motors and Ford. Nelson Mandela Bay boasts more than 15 000 hotel beds within a 20-minute radius of the Port Elizabeth International Airport – making it an ideal second-tier MICE destination. The majority of 3-5 star hotels offer some sort of conferencing facility for small

International Convention Centre at The Boardwalk Venue







Boardwalk ICC

1 100

1 600

1 600

























Yellowwood 1+2



Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Venue

Area (M2)






World of Windows






The Field

10 000

10 000

10 000

6 600

10 000

4 000

Presidential Suite







Mixed Zone







Hospitality Suites


Prince Alfred Park




Change Rooms






to midsize meetings. Some of the recent events to have taken place in Port Elizabeth recently are the Photographic Society of South Africa’s Annual Congress from 30 September to 5 October, and the Ironman World Championships, which brought hundreds of local and international participants to compete in the region. Another high-profile gathering was that of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), which met to establish a core group that would advance tourism within the Indian Ocean region. The 2nd IORA Tourism Ministers Meeting culminated with the adoption of the Nelson Mandela Bay Declaration that committed, inter alia, to the establishment of the IORA Tourism Resource Centre in the Sultanate of Oman in support of the IORA Tourism Core Group; improved travel facilitation and regional connectivity; and to unlocking the tourism potential of the ocean’s economy of the region. IORA member states hope to capture a share of the 1.8 billion international tourist market that UNWTO anticipates by 2030.


Key Venues International Convention Centre at The Boardwalk The International Convention Centre is the largest conference venue in Port Elizabeth. It is a multi-purpose, flexible space and can hold up to 1 600 people in its largest meeting area. The centre is conveniently located at the Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment World, a major convenience for host of preand post-conference activities. The Ampitheatre is also an ideal location for corporate functions. Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium is a world-class venue constructed as part of the FIFA World Cup in 2010. Since then it has served as host for a range of events of various sizes and types including exhibitions and concerts – in addition to hosting sporting events in its five-tier, 46 000-seater venue. Largescale expos like the Good Food and Wine Show and the Outdoor Expo have been held at the Stadium with great success. Incentive Travel Packages Because the Eastern Cape is the birth place of Nelson Mandela, this region offers a number of tours centred around his life and impact on the region. Of particular note is the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, as well as heritage sites like the Prince Alfred’s Guard Museum and monuments like the Langa Memorial. Port Elizabeth’s beaches are beautiful and worth exploring – definitely a must for incentive packages – as is Bay World, and Cape Recife.

The beaches of Cape Recife

The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium is a worldclass venue.

Climate Nelson Mandela Bay has a sub-tropical climate that is hot and slightly humid, with cool winters and rainfall all year round.

Contacts Access Port Elizabeth International Airport serves the region, with several regular flights to the city including: • • •

British Airways Safair South African Airways

Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism Convention Bureau Head Office: Tourism Centre, 40 Mitchell Street, South End, Port Elizabeth, 6001 Tel: +27 41 582 2575 Email: Web:

Currency and Exchange Rate South African Rand (ZAR)

US Dollar (USD)

Euro (EUR)

Chinese Yuan (CNY)





This information was correct at the time of going to print.

Leisure and business abound at the Boardwalk ICC




SENEGAL A country not often considered as a business events destination, Senegal is a rising star in Africa’s ever-growing firmament.


he country is one of Africa’s most stable, and is a juxtaposition of elegance and chaos: Dakar is an explosion of vibrant markets, snarling traffic and glittering nightlife, while the nearby Île de Gorée and beaches of Yoff and N’Gor offer a slow-moving reprieve. Senegal forms part of the Francophone nations in West Africa, with locals conversing in Wolof, the most widely spoken language, and French, inherited from the colonial era and now the country’s official language. Many places also have English-speaking guides to assist. Senegal has several small to midsize venues and resorts accommodating the MICE sector – not to mention an array of beautiful beaches to boot. As

such, it is set to become the next star host of business events in the region. In the past, the country has hosted the likes of the 7th Sahara Conference (2013), the 15th Francophone Assembly, and West AfricaCom, an event that takes place annually in June. Most recently, SIM Senegal, the 5th International Mining Conference and Exhibition, took place in the capital of Dakar in November. The high-profile Global Partnership for Education conference brought ten heads of state, over 100 ministers and more than 1 200 participants to Dakar in February this year. UNESCO also hosted ten regional events here between February 2016 and May 2017. In fact, the colonial-style city of Saint-Louis is a

Centre International de Conférences Abdou Diouf (CICAD) Venue


Main Auditorium

1 500 plenary, includes 8 translation boxes

6 VIP Boardrooms

100m each

Exhibition Centre


VIP Restaurant

210 plenary

Public Restaurant

260 plenary

Media Centre

120 plenary


200 spaces


UNESCO World Heritage Site and is in close proximity to picturesque national parks.

Key Venues Centre International de Conférences Abdou Diouf (CICAD) A mixture of mesh, glazing and metal, the International Conference Centre in Dakar is a beautiful architectural structure based on the network of a Baobab tree. The site spans 78 000m2 and the covered venue space is a total of 14 700m2. The centre was completed in time for the 15th Francophone Assembly (2014) and offers planners a range of state-of-the-art meeting, assembly and conference venues, with the plush 1 500-seat auditorium offering the ultimate in comfort and contemporary interior design. Radisson Blu Hotel, Dakar Sea Plaza The Dakar Sea Plaza, located in the city centre, is a picture-perfect venue for seminars, corporate retreats, banquets or celebrations. The venue has a wide selection of conference and meeting spaces that can hold between 10 and 500 delegates, with flexible meeting spaces and free, high-speed WiFi. Lamantin Beach Resort & Spa Lamantin is a gorgeous venue 80km from Dakar, located between the sea and the

Radisson Blu Hotel, Dakar Sea Plaza

Centre International de Conférences Abdou Diouf (CICAD)


Area (m2)


Air-Conditioned Tent









Mermoz 1+2



Ocean Room









Etienne Victor














The resort is an idyllic beach getaway for corporate trips and incentives, offering 146 rooms including 8 suites.

sacred forest of Bandia. The resort is an idyllic beach getaway for corporate trips and incentives, offering 146 rooms including 8 suites, three restaurants and bars for relaxing retreats, a wellness spa and fitness centre, and a dedicated event planning department to assist with meetings and incentives. Incentive Travel Packages With a wealth of national parks, museums, and a history steeped in slave trade and colonialism, Senegal is a unique option for incentive planners in search of something off the beaten path. An example of this is a tour to Lac Rose (Pink Lake) to find various species of tortoise, explore an actual bright pink lake, and visit a Fulani tribe for an infusion of local culture. Dakar city tours allow one to experience the hustle and bustle of a city bursting with energy. Senegal is also a treat for seafood lovers – fish is the country’s staple, and most menus are peppered with oysters, prawns and squid. Thieboudienne, the national dish, combines grilled fish with spicy tomato rice, cassava and carrots. Upcoming Trade Shows • FIDAK International Fair 29 Nov-16 Dec 2018 • West Africa Power Summit 12-14 Mar 2019 • Upstream West Africa Summit | 18-20 Jun 2019 • West AfricaCom | 25-26 Jun 2019 • Sen Habitat | 8-10 Oct 2019 • Dak’Art | May 2020

Climate Senegal has a humid, tropical rainy season from May to November, with a dry season dominated by a hot, harmattan wind.

Lamantin Beach Resort & Spa Lamantin Beach Resort & Spa Venue


3-way divisible conference room

310m2 (three 100m2 rooms)



Terrace for tea breaks

With ocean view

Radisson Blu Hotel, Dakar Sea Plaza, Restaurant

Currency and Exchange Rate

Access Senegal has four commercial airports, with Léopold Sédar Senghor International Airport and Blaise Diagne International Airport both serving the global community. Airlines to Senegal include: • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Air Algerie Air France Air Italy Brussels Airlines Delta Emirates Ethiopian Airlines Iberia Kenya Airways Royal Air Maroc TAP Air Portugal Tunisair Turkish Airlines Vueling Airlines

West African CFA Franc

South African Rand (ZAR)

US Dollar (USD)

Euro (EUR)

Chinese Yuan (CNY)






This information was correct at the time of going to print.

Contacts Senegalese Agency for Tourism Promotion Head Office: VDN-Annexe Caisse de Sécurité Sociale-Lot B-Immeuble ASPT, Dakar Tel: +221 32 824 44 66 Email: Web:










China | Photo by Pixabay on Pexels





IELA SIGNS MOU WITH SAACI The International Exhibition Logistics Association has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Southern African Association for the Conference Industry. The MOU was signed by Mariane Ewbank, IELA Board Member and former Chairwoman, and Rudi van der Vyver, CEO of SAACI. The objectives and areas of cooperation will be: • Joint promotion of both parties’ congress, forum, educational programmes in respective geographic locations, with the creation of new education and training opportunities for the benefit of the industry • Each party will offer members benefits to the other party • Exchange of information about respective events and programmes for cross marketing, and about workshops or sessions about the state of the industry in their respective area of expertise • Joint offerings, with special visibility on the respective website, periodic reports on the major developments in each organisation’s geographical market(s) and special offering for each other’s events Their main priorities for 2018 and 2019 are education and training programmes, labour, research and development, and improving security awareness in the events industry.

Rudi Van Der Vyver Chief Executive Officer at SAACI

MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR ASSOCIATION MEMBERSHIP As an industry body our focus is foremost on creating value for our members in various ways. These can be of tangible and intangible value, as well as direct and indirect value. We also always have another eye firmly focused on the greater industry and as the general rule of thumb we need to ensure a stable and growing industry for our members — and then within this, create the aforementioned value for our members. Our manifesto highlights clearly that “We facilitate an enabling environment for learning, growth and collaboration” and these are the platforms we work on daily to provide our members with enabling environments to further educate themselves. Environments for members to collaborate not only with other members and have a safer and more trustworthy business environment, but also to collaborate with industry stakeholders. Lastly through a combination of these platforms and initiatives, we aim to create an environment which allows growth to all our members as well as the greater industry across Southern Africa. These are all great, but for this work to truly make a difference, it’s absolutely vital to be actively involved and “make your membership work for you”. A few tips on how to get the most out of your association membership: 1. Communicate actively with your association. Ask questions, respond to surveys, read the communication sent as this is specifically aimed at providing members with vital information or soliciting comments and inputs from members in order

for the association to take these concerns to larger stakeholders like government and lobby for member needs on serious industry issues. It is vital for us to be the voice of our members and not to operate outside of this community. 2. Be involved by attending events, networking functions, training sessions, invites to focus groups, etc. Again, these are platforms are aimed at creating those exact enabling environments for members. Try it, you will see the value, and these are the exact initiatives membership fees are used to set up. 3. Make use of the various platforms, such as social media, website portals, member discount offers, and partnership offers to attend other industry events and/or training initiatives. These are set up for you, so let your membership dues not be wasted. Ensure you at least have a good idea of what is on offer from your association and if in doubt, speak to us. We are here to help our members. 4. Make sure your membership fees are paid. As not for profit organisations, associations always battle to continuously innovate, and often innovation comes with some cost. We are reliant on our members to keep us in a position to use these funds to plough back into the industry and more specifically into direct value creation initiatives for the very same members and the greater industry. Be involved, active and open, and get the most from your association and more specifically your SAACI membership.


The Association for Women in Events (AWE) has joined forces with several industry leaders to combat sexual harassment in the events sector. The coalition comprises of leaders and executives from ASAE, AWE, EIC, IMEX, JMIC, MPI, PCMA, and SITE. “In the wake of moments like #TimesUp and #MeToo, every industry must take action to create positive change and end sexual harassment once and for all,” an official statement said. “The coalition recognises that when it comes to these ethical concerns and human rights, we are #StrongerTogether.” Carrie Abernathy and Kiki J. Fox gather these industry leaders for regular meetings of discussion and direction. Fox is also organising action items and driving this initiative. The group’s next step is to release a webinar that introduces experts on the subject matter. “It’s imperative that our organisations present a united front against sexual harassment in the industry. Together, we are declaring zero tolerance for behaviour that harasses or discriminates,” she said.

Leatitia van Straten Chairperson of AAXO

CREATIVITY AND DESIGN ARE VITAL TO EXHIBITION STAND SUCCESS Ever wondered why visitors gravitate towards certain stands and not others? It has to do with the clever design of the stand! (And sometimes an incentive to go there, like the free coffee.) It takes real talent and creativity to design an exhibition stand that meets the clients’ objectives, is practical and looks good. But some stands just have that something extra to attracts visitors like bees to honey; gravitating towards something friendly or inviting. This can be achieved through the artful use of design, colour, props and products on display. These tools subconsciously trigger certain associations and reactions. By incorporating pastels or neutral shades, you can replicate a feeling of calmness (think bedrooms, living rooms, etc). For a business stand, dark blue implies trust, and is prevalent in especially the finance, security and health sectors. Warmer colours like red and orange engage a visitor’s excitement and energy and are often used in entertainment and sports. Essentially, your stand should represent your brand. Therefore to have an amazing stand, spend a little more time planning with your design team and get the use of design and colour just right to meet your objectives. For reputable stand design and build, contact any of the AAXO-approved suppliers on or EXSA members on

ICCA BECOMES CAE APPROVED PROVIDER The International Congress and Convention Association has become a CAE Approved Provider, meaning their education sessions fulfill the professional development requirements to earn or maintain the Certified Association Executive credential. This credential is the marker of a committed association professional who has demonstrated the wide range of knowledge essential to manage an association in today’s challenging environment. To learn more about the certification, visit www.asaecenter. org/programs/cae-certification. ICCA has also announced the dates of their Sector Client/Supplier Business Workshops in 2019, all of which can be found on

West Coast National Park © SA Tourism






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