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Las Vegas reveals meeting industry generates over $9 billion (£6.3 billion) in revenue

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) joined leaders from across the Las Vegas meeting and convention industry including MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment, The Venetian and The Palazzo and Wynn Resorts to celebrate Global Meetings Industry Day (GMID) on Thursday 14th April 2016.

The day was especially important for Las Vegas as the meetings, conventions and trade show industry has a significant impact on the local economy supporting 66,500 jobs and generating more than $9.3 billion in economic impact.

“Tourism is the economic engine that drives this town and the meeting industry plays a significant role,” said Rossi Ralenkotter, president/CEO of the LVCVA. “The nearly 6 million people who come to Las Vegas every year for a meeting, convention or trade show, help fill hotel rooms mid-week, support tens of thousands of jobs and they significantly contribute to the local economy.”

To help shine a light on this important industry, top meetings industry professionals in Las Vegas met at the newly opened T-Mobile Arena for a leadership panel discussion.

The event kicked off with a keynote address by Roger Dow, president and CEO of U.S. Travel Association. Dow and U.S. Travel are both leaders of the Meetings Mean Business Coalition, which provides resources to promote and defend the value of face-to-face business meetings and travel on our economy. The Meetings Mean Business Coalition launched GMID in an effort to showcase the real impact that business meetings, conferences, conventions, incentive travel, trade shows and exhibitions have on people, business and communities.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for meetings and events industry leaders to come together and showcase the profound impact of this critical sector on businesses, communities and the economy,” said Dow. “I like to say that there's no technology that can replace a handshake.

The power of the unplanned interactions that so often occur at in-person meetings cannot be overstated. They are what build relationships, drive collaboration and spark ideas. I'm proud to join leaders in Las Vegas, a world-class destination, and a city known for and driven by its hospitality and events industry, to recognize this very special day."

U.S. Travel continues to be a leading voice in reminding policymakers of the value of government meetings and travel under all fiscal environments.

GMID marks the expansion of North American Meetings Industry Day (NAMID), held April 16, 2015 in the United States, Canada, Mexico and parts of Latin America.

“I am so proud that something that started as a Canadian MPI initiative has organically grown into a Global Day of recognition for the power of face-to-face meetings,” said Michael Dominguez, Meetings Mean Business’ co-chair and senior vice president of corporate sales at MGM Resorts International.  “There was such enthusiasm surrounding the success of last year’s North American Meetings Industry Day that it leads to global organizations reaching out and asking to participate in the initiative.”

The keynote was followed by a panel discussion moderated by Ralenkotter that featured Chuck Bowling, president and COO of Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino; Chandra Allison, Vice President of Sales, The Venetian and The Palazzo; Chris Flatt, Executive Vice President of Hotel Sales and Marketing, Wynn Resorts; and Michael Massari, Senior Vice President for National Meetings and Events, Caesars Entertainment.

“We have a saying that nothing good ever happened until someone had a meeting, and this is true when we’re talking about the value and power of connecting with someone face-to-face,” said Massari, treasurer of the U.S. Travel Association and senior vice president of national meetings and events at Caesars Entertainment. “We were once labelled the invisible industry but our value is unmistakable. That’s what makes an event like Global Meetings Industry Day so important. It allows us to celebrate our worth together as an industry while establishing the value to business, communities and the economy to the world.”

The Las Vegas GMID leadership panel discussion was also streamed live for participants all around the world.

Las Vegas boasts more than 11 million square feet of meeting space in addition to a wide array of event, dining and entertainment venues that are also used for group business. Trade Show News Network recently recognized Las Vegas as the No. 1 trade show destination in the country for the 22nd consecutive year for hosting 54 of the top 250 largest trade shows in North America.

Las Vegas hosted nearly 22,000 meetings, conventions and trade shows in 2015. One reason Las Vegas is a top choice year after year, is that there is always something new to see and experience. Our resort and business partners continually invest in improvements to keep the destination fresh and appealing to business travellers.  

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