Suppliers association ICCA should set up a ‘charter’ to help its members avoid bidding for international association business they have little or no chance of winning, it was claimed.
The appeal came from Becky Graveney, head of associations at tourism body London and Partners, who said England’s bid for the FIFA 2018 World Cup was doomed to failure.
“It emerged that FIFA wanted to give the tournament to an emerging country. That’s fine. We have no problem with that. But shouldn’t FIFA, or any association for that matter, be upfront about these things? And isn’t it time ICCA drew up a some kind of charter so know what questions to ask?”
Graveney’s appeal came during a lively debate into the ethics of business at ICCA's 51st Annual Congress in Puerto Rico, which examined the fine line between ‘bribery’ and ‘incentive’.
The meeting began with Kitty Wong, president of PCO K&A International, calling for an end to ‘phantom bidding’ – when unscrupulous suppliers bid for events unsure if they can deliver.
She was followed by Miranda Barrett, VP of the Entrepreneurs’ Organisation, who explained how her association got members actively involved in the bidding process so it was able to ‘justify anything that sounded like a staff perk”.
Mariano Castex, MD of MCI Latin America, said members should follow the newspaper test to determine if something was bribery. “How would you feel if your actions were reported in tomorrow’s newspaper?” he asked.
PIC: Graveney makes her point