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JAN-FEB 2018 15 meetings & conventions • Budget concerns are valid as meeting owners are taking a closer look at the details of spend. Respondents in Europe shared that procurement is taking away some autonomy from traditionally marketing-led events such as sales meetings and tradeshows. Expense reports are also being audited as meetings and events are now considered as a category of spend under high risk of fraud. This has led to tightened meeting policies and planning processes. The forecast also highlights: • Increased competition in supplier landscape • Focus on corporate compliance, also linked to risk and security management • Increased regulation within the pharmaceutical industry, with a possible increase in M&A activity • Technology's huge impact on end- to-end events planning and attendee experience B eing truly global means going local. The 2018 Global Meetings and Events Forecast by American Express (AMEX) Meetings & Events acknowledges this key trend as organisations recognise the need to adapt global programmes to region- specific needs. This approach will strengthen the adoption of programmes and consolidate spend, according to Issa Jouaneh, senior VP and GM, AMEX Meetings & Events. Importantly, it drives local content production and strategy adoption that amplifies attendee engagement – another hot topic among planners. The forecast identified that meetings and events planners face increased complexity in their work. Respondents indicated that regardless of hotel rates, air rates or the expense of a unique venue, cost per attendee will rise because clients demand quality experiences that are meaningful and special. While hotel room rate is predicted to increase by about 2.8% globally, Asia Pacific will be lower at 1.4%, with Europe the lowest at 1.3%. Demand for non-traditional meeting facilities will increase by 3.8%, and this demand will likely outpace growth. Who's holding the purse strings? Respondents also stated that budgets are not increasing. This will create demand for smaller events with tighter programming, and more immersive experiences for bigger impact within a shorter time frame. Overall meeting spend in 2018 will remain relatively flat across all regions except Asia Pacific, which forecasted an expected decrease of 1% in meeting budgets for 2018. North America predicts a 1% increase. ERS Creative Technologies transformed the Beijing National Stadium into a video gamers' fantasyland with 2,000sqm of LED screens TOP EVENTS IN ASIA PACIFIC AND COST PER ATTENDEE (Exclude airfare) US$427 20% Sales & marketing US$585 17% Conference/ tradeshow US$346 16% Training WHERE TO MEET: Factors that Affect Decisions in Asia Pacific 43% Economic and political instability concerns 41% Safety concerns 25% Specific location requirements SOURCE: 2018 GLOBAL MEETINGS AND EVENTS FORECAST BY AMERICAN EXPRESS (AMEX) MEETINGS & EVENTS

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