International association meetings are showing remarkable resilience in the face of mounting economic pressure, according to the results of a new survey.
Hosted buyers from international associations were quizzed on their organisation’s performance at this year’s meetings industry trade show IMEX, in Frankfurt, Germany.
Although the mood was slightly more subdued than last year, associations continued to paint a broadly positive picture of the not-for-profit convention scene.
Of the 84 buyers who responded to the joint ICCA/IMEX survey, 28 per cent reported higher attendance for their 2012 events than previous years, while 38 per cent indicated no change.
Almost a third (31 per cent) reported a slight fall in delegate numbers, more than double the percentage who reported the same in 2011, but fewer (only three per cent) indicated a ‘significant fall’ this time round.
Financial pressures continue to bite. Only 14 per cent reported higher income from sponsors and exhibitions in 2012, 34 per cent showed no change, while the remaining 49 per cent suffered falls.
When asked if the continued global economic turbulence had any negative impact on their association in 2012, almost 60 per cent answered ‘yes’, an increase of 17 per cent on last year.
However, when asked about their projections for 2013, almost 22 per cent of associations said they would be running more meetings in 2013, while only 11 per cent planned to organise fewer.
At the same time over 40 per cent are still projecting higher attendances than in 2012, compared to almost 10 per cent who expect their delegate numbers to fall.
Pictured: IMEX chairman Ray Bloom addresses association buyers