Just over twelve months ago on 20 December 2016, International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney) opened its doors as one of Australia’s premier convention, exhibition and entertainment venues. Its first year of operation has made waves across the industry and put Sydney back on the map for international business events.
After three years of construction, the $1.5 billion development compromises an industry leading convention centre, a world-class theatre and 35,000sqm exhibition space.
Geoff Donaghy, CEO of ICC Sydney shares highlights of ICC Sydney’s inaugural year as well as what he is most looking forward to for the team and venue this year.
What are some of the key highlights from the ICC Sydney’s opening year?
ICC Sydney’s first year of operation has been nothing short of success. In our first 12 months of operation, we delivered 755 events and welcomed 1.3 million visitors through the doors. We have put Sydney back on the map for business events and our presence in the industry has been felt on a world-wide scale.
Our first year saw many milestone moments for us, including a partnership with Sydney Water to reduce our ecological footprint by decreasing bottled water consumption onsite, receiving LEED Gold Status for our all-encompassing approach to sustainability and being the first conference in Australia to launch a virtual reality video experience.
Another first for the industry in Australia was our pilot of a mobile airline check-in and baggage drop service which offered conference delegates from around the world the ultimate in flexibility and convenience. Delivered in partnership with Off Airport Check In Solutions (OACIS), the trial offered international and interstate visitors a service to drop off their bags on the final day of the conference and make their way to Sydney Airport luggage-free.
The team at ICC Sydney has accomplished some remarkable achievements, while the venue itself has enriched the city’s financial and knowledge economies, underlining its reputation as one of the world’s most desirable events destinations.
What are some highlights and big events coming up for 2018?
With 1,200 events secured until 2026, including major national and international symposiums such as Sibos 2018, the 2018 World Congress of Accountants, COSPAR 2020 - dubbed the space Olympics - and the 18th World Congress on Medical and Health Informatics (MedInfo 2021), the future is certainly bright for ICC Sydney.
2018 will see the return of many major events from our first year including, CEBIT, Salesforce and Australian Gaming Expo, as well as many new clients and events such as SIBOS, Global Summit of Woman and the World Congress of Accountants.
What are you most looking forward to this year?
In 2018 we will continue to improve and offer our clients nothing less than extraordinary experiences. We remain committed to ensuring that everything we do consistently reaches a world class standard, and that we are fostering powerful long-term economic, cultural and environmental benefits for our clients, partners and visitors which are felt long after their events take place at ICC Sydney.
Late last year we launched our Legacy Program, which is designed to connect the world’s brightest minds, industry leaders and delegates across a diverse cross-section of Sydney’s vibrant community.
The program fosters knowledge exchange, collaboration and engagement across four key streams – Innovators, Generation Next, Aboriginal Australia and Sustainability. Each stream provides clients with an opportunity to connect with locals through dedicated initiatives – from direct exposure to Sydney’s network of entrepreneurs and start-ups, and fostering the next generation of thought leaders via student engagement, to working with local Aboriginal businesses and measuring the ecological impact of events.
This year will see us deepen our approach to the legacy of business events by further supporting our clients with connections in our own community. We will begin to measure the impact of the program and ensure the concept of legacy continues to grow in our global industry.
What do event planners need to know about booking an event at ICC Sydney?
At ICC Sydney, our event planners will work hand in hand with the clients to ensure the success of their event. From food and beverage, to audio visual and technology, our collaborative and innovative approach means every aspect of every event will be delivered to a world class standard.
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