Let’s do the math behind the future of the meetings industry. From predicting attendance trends for trade shows to supporting the economic significance of meetings, here are three numbers that you should know this week.
1) 1.3 percent
That’s the size of growth that the trade show industry experienced in the first quarter of 2013, according to new research from the Center for Exhibition Industry Research. With year-over-year gains in net square feet, the number of exhibitors and real revenue, the report includes plenty of news to help trade show organizers smile.
Unfortunately, though, not all the numbers are positive. The CEIR report indicates an overall year-over-year 0.2 percent decrease in attendance - - a decrease that experts believe may be caused by the belt-tightening in Washington, D.C.
“With the decline in attendance, we are closely monitoring business-to-business exhibitions especially for trade shows that depend on government employees’ participation to determine how much of the attendance decline is directly attributable to sequestration,” Douglas L. Ducate, CEM, CMP, President and CEO, CEIR said.
SEE ALSO: How to Manage a Multi-Generational Trade Show Audience
2) 9 million
That’s the number of visas issued around the globe by the US Department of State, which signals an estimated 19 percent increase. As more meeting planners work to attract international attendees, that’s a great figure to see. However, it looks like millions of travelers may continue to experience some longer-than-expected entry times due to, you guessed it, sequestration.
“Homeland Security has a problem in that border demand is increasing, but the number of officers they have available to process travelers has been stable,” Ed Ramotowski, Deputy Assistant Secretary, US Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, said last week at the U.S. Travel Association’s IPW in Las Vegas. “Because of sequestration and budget challenges, they’re not able to increase their staff.”
SEE ALSO: Why Your International Attendees Aren’t Happy
3) $92 billion
That’s a number you can use next time you hear someone scrutinizing the real value of the incentives, meetings and events industry. According to a new study from the Society of Incentive Travel Executives, the industry accounted for $92 billion of business travel expenses in 2010 alone.
Looking for even more numbers to highlight the positive economic impact of bringing people together face-to-face? Click here to download the full SITE report.