Global Industry Development Network

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Harry Poulos
Chairman, Membership, Practitioner and Academic Committee (MPAC), ISSMGE

GIDN hits a milestone with over 200 meetings industry business development projects completed.

Nov 29th 2013, New York, USA The Global Industry Development Network this week celebrates a major milestone in its history with the completion of its 200th meetings industry project.

Started in 2008, the Global Industry Development Network is a private company limited by shares, and has been averaging around 40 projects a year in this sector ran by 35 staff in 16 countries.

Included in the mix of completed projects are 45 market intelligence studies which have involved a wide range of projects from analysing over 10,000 US associations, to mapping the corporate meeting sector across Asia, through to exploring the source markets of meetings coming into Russia.

“The market research projects are a hit with the team, in particular as they started during the global financial crisis of 2009 and so this created some amazing patterns in regards to how the meetings industry adapted to the European and US financial troubles, and how others started to capitalise on the growth of Asia, these are interesting projects to work on”. Says Scott Campbell, Executive Director of Global Industry Development Network.

Another 10 projects completed by the Global Industry Development Network included research into the development of Convention Bureaux such as the Sarawak Convention Bureau in Malaysia and the international meetings division of Destination DC, as well as demonstrating the market potential to countries like Russia and Canada in order to have funding approved for new convention centres.

“I feel very proud looking at the developments such as the new Ottawa Convention Centre or the current hole in the ground that is going to be the new state of the art World Trade and Convention Centre Halifax in 2016” says Scott, “whilst we were just one part of the team involved in their development, we are happy to have contributed to the creation of this new product. In total, the work on securing funding has secured over USD$2 billion towards new convention centres as a result of these market feasibility studies”.

Despite this success, the largest number of projects completed are by far in the field of business development.

Over 100 business development projects have been completed in the last 5 years, which are mainly industry specific campaigns aimed at generating association conference or corporate meeting business for our city partners.

“This has included campaigns on the science industry for Malaysia, targeting energy conferences for Australia, agriculture and maritime conferences for Canada, and many more” adds Scott, “we find it better to support marketing initiatives by running targeted business development campaigns at 40 or 50 key people at a time who are matches between international associations and local hosts, and the more you segment the better a result and return on investment you get”.

The business development projects are varied and target association conferences and corporate meetings, as well as being divided up by industries, decision making process and geography.

One of the favourites with the team was the “Friends of Canada Campaign” which spent 12 months developing links between International associations and Canadian Associations. At one point there was a synchronised lunch in Canada and dinner in London, with both events connected by live streaming. On the UK side the invitations were delivered by a Canadian Mountie, on the night of the event the international association Executives were picked up by limousine and upon arrival at the Canadian High Commission were ushered by secret service agents through flashing paparazzi into the High Commissioners Private chamber for cocktails and dinner. Across the Ocean at the same time, similar activities were underway and Canadian Associations were greeted by impersonators of the Royal Family. The emcees on both ends worked splendidly together, and it was a great night. This campaign alone generated 7 conference wins and over $25 million in direct delegate expenditure.

The Global Industry Development Network is already on their way to their next 200 projects with two new projects starting this week. More information on the Global Industry Development Network can be found at


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