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Events budgets on the rise says Cvent's annual report

52 per cent of event planners say their event budgets have increased year on year, compared with 32 per cent in 2017

More than half (52 per cent) of event planners worldwide have seen their budgets increase year on year, compared with just 32 per cent in 2017, according to the annual Global Planner Sourcing report from agency Cvent. The study found that there has been a significant increase in planners organising six to 10 offsite meetings (28 per cent against 15 per cent last year) and a significant drop in planners arranging just one or two offsite annual meetings (13 per cent, compared with 26 per cent in 2017’s report).  

The steady rise at the top end of the spectrum of annual events planned, together with a sharp decline in those who plan five or fewer, suggests that meetings, conferences, and events have all grown in importance  for companies worldwide. 

The report found that the overall state of the industry worldwide is positive, with budgets on the rise and a need for larger event spaces. Meetings and event professionals are planning more events with greater attendance and larger budgets, yet only 16 per cent of planners say they are "extremely certain" of their venue when they begin the sourcing process.

Discounting maintains its power with event organisers, even in a year of economic stability and rising budgets, 90 per cent of planners said they would be willing to switch to their second choice venue for a cost saving of at least one per cent. 

Worldwide business confidence is reflected in the comparative year-on-year size of meetings, conferences, and events. Regional, smaller events of one to 20 attendees have decreased by half, while meetings of 21 to 100 attendees have declined by three percentage points. 

By comparison, meetings for 101 to 500 attendees have returned to the levels recorded in 2016 (a jump of six percentage points from last year). Meetings of 501 to 2,000 attendees and those for more than 2,000 attendees have both increased as well (+three and +one per cent, respectively). 

This year’s results show that businesses worldwide are now bringing people together more often and on a much larger scale - 59 per cent report an increase in the number of attendees, while only  12 per cent report a drop in numbers.

This comes as the sourcing process continues to go digital, with planners increasingly relying on online tools such as search engines, venue websites, and reviews when searching for and choosing destinations and venues.

This year’s Global Planner Sourcing Report has more than doubled in size from last year’s study.  Some 2,668 meeting and event planners were surveyed across the US, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific 

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