Thursday, May 19, 2016
First WTM Connect Asia takes off with big ambitions
Organisers of WTM Connect Asia have unveiled plans to double participation of buyers and sellers by its next edition in 2017.
The inaugural show, which opened yesterday, boasts a moderate attendance of 70 hosted buyers from 25 countries, as well as 50 exhibitors, the bulk of whom are from Asia. The three most represented exhibitor countries were Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines, said Craig Moyes, portfolio director, WTM portfolio at Reed Travel Exhibitions.
In five year’s time, Moyes sees numbers swelling to 300 buyers and 300 sellers, but the show will still retain its small and intimate nature, much unlike Reed Travel Exhibitions’ flagship event World Travel Market in London, which attracts a high volume of 50,000 attendees.
He believes its relatively small size gives the show its charm, where, he hopes, everyone gets to meet one another and network during sessions arranged after the formal events were over. He added that sellers are also screened to ensure that they are a good match for qualified buyers.
While there are many trade shows in Asia already, Moyes says that there is still room to grow by providing both buyers and exhibitors greater value for money.