NSW Trade and Tourism Minister, the Hon. Stuart Ayres MP, said the state government’s investment in ICC Sydney, a $1.5 billion project within the $3.4 billion revitalisation of Darling Harbour, was attracting serious interest across all of the convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct’s market segments.
“The amount of interest and excitement about ICC Sydney is booming and we are thrilled to see the exhibition industry returning to its rightful home in Darling Harbour.
“A major contributor to the New South Wales economy, the exhibition industry attracts more than half a million people each year and generates about $100 million annually in economic benefit to the state of New South Wales,” Minister Ayres said.
ICC Sydney CEO Geoff Donaghy is delighted with the response from the exhibition industry, and is looking forward to welcoming both long standing and new concepts to the world’s most anticipated convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct after its opening in December this year.
“Exhibitions are critical to the business mix of a global city. When ICC Sydney opens Sydney will have an international business events venue to suit its status as Australia’s centre of business and innovation.
“In addition to the 35 events we can announce today, we have a further 30 under negotiation. We couldn’t be happier with the strong response from the exhibition industry, its support for the project and the excitement building around ICC Sydney’s opening,” Mr Donaghy said.
Events have been secured with all of the major exhibition operators in Australia, including Reed Exhibitions, Diversified Communications Australia, Expertise Events, Australasian Gaming Expo and Boating Industry Association, which runs the iconic and much loved Sydney International Boat Show.
Boating Industry Association National CEO Howard Glenn said investment in the future of the exhibition industry through the delivery of ICC Sydney would help set his industry up for increased business success in the years ahead.
The Sydney International Boat Show is one of those events that promotes Sydney as a fantastic place to do business on an international scale while driving business for both the industry and the State.
“With one in five boat sales for the year occurring either at the show or as a result of it, the opportunity to exhibit our product is critical to our industry’s success. The boat show delivers $500 million of turnover either during the show or immediately after it and in 2015 delivered $27.6 million in economic impact for the state of New South Wales.
“We hope a reinvigorated precinct on one of the world’s most beautiful harbours will help us to improve upon that”, Glenn said.
Having confirmed its flagship events for ICC Sydney, Stephen Steenson, the Director of Operations for Reed Exhibitions said the company couldn’t wait to return to Darling Harbour and the new first class facility being unveiled in December. “The esteemed Reed Gift Fairs, OZ Comic Con and Beauty Expo are amongst Reed Exhibitions’ events gearing up for a huge 2017 at ICC Sydney,” Steenson said.
“The combination of first class events, an inner city destination and a fantastic new venue at ICC Sydney provides the best opportunity for our customers to realise their business outcomes”, he said.
Diversified Communications Australia General Manager, David Longman said his group is excited to confirm its high profile trade and consumer events for ICC Sydney in 2017, counting Fitness Sydney, Fine Food and FoodPro amongst those being announced today.
“We have an exceptional calendar of events scheduled for ICC Sydney and a host of new opportunities for businesses to connect with clients to exhibit, sell and innovate,” he said.
According to Cohen, Fine Food alone is expected to attract up to 20,000 visitors across four days and generate in excess of $50 million in economic benefit to the state of New South Wales.
The growing gaming industry is also delighted to be moving to ICC Sydney as the integrated convention, exhibition and entertainment model will allow it to build a seminar and convention component to the event that has grown year on year to become the third largest in the world.
“As well as the diversity and flexibility of event spaces on offer at ICC Sydney, its proximity to the CBD and its access to transport and nearby accommodation is expected to greatly improve attendance at the 28th Australasian Gaming Expo at ICC Sydney in August 2017. We can’t wait to bring our event to an innovative and contemporary venue in the heart of the city,” said Ross Ferrar, CEO of the Gaming Technologies.
Amongst the events confirmed today by Expertise Events were its Jewellery Fair as well as, a favourite event for regional New South Wales visitors, the Craft and Quilt Fair, which brings in 55 coach tours from regions including Coffs Harbour, Orange and the far South Coast of NSW.
Gary Fitz Roy, Managing Director of Expertise Events said both he and his exhibitors were looking forward to returning to a rejuvenated precinct at Darling Harbour.
“From what I’ve seen of ICC Sydney, I know our exhibitors are going to love doing business there. The high calibre venue and supportive operations team are enhanced by a variety of options available for follow up meetings and business networking locations in and around the building,” Mr Fitz Roy said.
ICC Sydney is being delivered by the NSW Government and is operated by venue management group AEG Ogden.