With a track record of hosting Asia’s most prominent events, Singapore continues to deliver innovative solutions for the transfer of knowledge, ideas and connections to drive new possibilities for the Meetings, Incentive, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) sector in Singapore. Singapore has been recognised by the World Bank as one of the easiest places in the world to do business (Doing Business 2018 Report, World Bank) and was named the Best BTMICE City at the prestigious TTG Travel Awards in 2018. While Singapore had welcomed 2.46 million BTMICE visitors in 2017, the city saw 1.3 million BTMICE visitors in the first half of 2018.
Kicking off its first MICE-focused event for 2019 in India, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) organised a MICE thought leadership seminar in Mumbai with the theme “Meetings & Incentive Travel to Singapore – Forging New Possibilities”. The programme included a keynote presentation by Mr. Gokul Bajaj, Head of Sales and Partnerships at Cvent, a leading cloud-based enterprise event management platform with solutions to optimise the entire event management value chain. A panel discussion followed on the topic of “How can the MICE industry leverage technology to better engage their audience?”. Mr Gokul Bajaj, Ms. Aikta Tyagi, Vice President & Head of Special Events at Amway India, Mr. SD Nandakumar, President & Country Head - B2B for SOTC Travel Ltd formed the panel. The discussion was moderated by Mr. GB Srithar, Regional Director (South Asia, Middle East and Africa), Singapore Tourism Board.
A team building activity focusing on Lego Serious Play, conducted by Mr Ludovic Odier, the CEO of Outdoor in Asia, highlighted innovative, high impact and experiential team engagement activities possible in Singapore for M&I travellers. The attendees were updated on new MICE venues, incentive schemes provided by the STB and diverse and exciting array of experiences available in Singapore for M&I groups. The programme was well attended with 150 Indian travel agents and 40 Singapore stakeholders representing hotels, airlines, attractions, Destination Management Companies (DMC) and cruise operators.
Speaking on STB’s efforts to showcase Singapore as a destination of choice among the MICE travellers, GB Srithar, Regional Director (South Asia, Middle East and Africa), Singapore Tourism Board said, “India continues to be a key source market for MICE travellers to Singapore. Thanks to the support of trade intermediaries and corporates, we have witnessed a healthy growth in M&I visitor-ship over the past few years. This thought leadership MICE Seminar is relevant, as many in the M&I space are contemplating the role of technology in enhancing their groups’ travel experiences and programme. The trade engagement event enabled Indian travel trade to exchange ideas and deepen relationships with the Singapore tourism partners. We look forward to inviting and delighting a good number of M&I groups to Singapore this year.”
Considering all travellers, including MICE, from January to November 2018, Singapore welcomed 1.32 million Indian visitors, a 14.4% increase over the same period in 2017. India continues to be Singapore’s third largest visitor arrivals source market.