World Travel Market 2012 experienced an overall accumulative 3% increase in visitors, with each of the four days attracting more visitors than in 2011, and generated £1,653 million in industry deals. Overall, WTM 2012 attracted almost 29,000 travel trade visitors, according to unaudited figures.
The invite-only first day (Monday 5th November) was “a resounding success” with exhibitor invitation visitors up 5% on last year’s event. The Monday morning Speed Networking session had a record number of exhibitors (498) and WTM Meridian Club buyers (210) discussing business deals before the exhibition floor opened.
Matt Cheevers, Purchasing Director, Voyage Prive, said: “Speed networking is a perfect way to start World Travel Market. Almost everyone I talked to was relevant, and in this context it is possible to get down to the key points of interest. Making the initial contact at the speed networking makes the follow up easier and more targeted.”
The second day (Tuesday 6th November) experienced a 1% increase, Wednesday 7th November brought a 9% visitor increase, and the final day (Thursday 8th November) saw a 1% increase. The Thursday Speed Networking – introduced this year to facilitate post-WTM business deals – attracted 372 exhibitors and 100 senior buyers from the WTM Meridian Club.
Simon Press, Reed Travel Exhibitions Director World Travel Market, said: “I am delighted with WTM’s unaudited visitor figures. Every single day experienced an increase in visitors, which demonstrates how WTM delivers for its exhibitors.
“WTM 2011 facilitated an impressive £1,653 million in industry deals. I am confident that the increased visitor numbers, alongside the success of the Speed Networking events, will see WTM 2012 responsible for almost £2,000 million in travel deals.”
World Travel Market 2013 aims to be the biggest and best ever with an increased focus on three growth sectors of travel technology, luxury and business travel.
The new look WTM 2013, which takes place between Monday 4th – Thursday 7th November, will see:
• The Travel Technology region becoming its own event within WTM called The Travel Tech Show @WTM
• World Travel Market is also launching a dedicated Luxury Showcase, in association with fellow Reed Travel Exhibitions event International Luxury Travel Market
• Business Travel Market, WTM’s sister event, will co-locate with WTM at ExCeL for Wednesday 6th and Thursday 7th November
Fiona Jeffrey, Reed Travel Exhibitions Chairman World Travel Market, said: “World Travel Market is the event where the industry comes together to conduct its contracting. The increased focus on travel technology, luxury and business travel will only increase the business opportunities for WTM exhibitors and visitors across the four days of WTM 2013.
“Travel technology at WTM has been phenomenally successful over the past few years so it was the natural and obvious progression to give it its own event status.
“The luxury market has ridden the recent global financial downturn better than any other sector and is a growing market around the world, while a high proportion of WTM visitors are interested in business travel, meaning the co-location of Business Travel Market will increase the business potential for exhibitors and visitors from both events.”