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Already popular among U.S. exhibitors, Melbourne is going proactive in the States


A new liaison based in New York City is targeting U.S. exhibitors for increased participation in tradeshows in Melbourne, Australia, which has a goal of being a top global destination for business events.

The Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) recently appointed Jaclyn Weinstein to the new position of director of business development, North America. Formerly of association and conference-management company BSC Management, her appointment comes soon after the MCB tapped Myriad Marketing to be its regional representative in North America to grow the already significant amount of business received from U.S.-based exhibitors and others.

“Jaclyn’s extensive experience in cultivating client relationships and association management will be invaluable in promoting Melbourne to the all-important North American market,” said Julia Swanson, general manager of business development, MCB. “Jaclyn will play a vital role in ensuring Melbourne is top of mind for conference and event planners in North America and reinforce the fact that Melbourne and the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre are world leaders when it comes to staging business events. Jaclyn will provide personal support and expertise to decision makers to assist them in planning their international conventions.”

North America is Melbourne’s largest source of international delegates at tradeshows and conventions followed by China and Japan. The MCB indicates about 72 percent of delegates treat their attendance as a “trip of a lifetime” and stay longer to experience the city’s beaches, wildlife, food and wine. And interest continues to rise among U.S. exhibitors and others.

“The MCB’s strategic business plan has a significant focus on business-development activity in the association and incentive sectors in the United States and Canada,” said Swanson. “The MCB is receiving a lot of interest from American associations that are looking to expand their global reach and see Australia as a vibrant, experienced and safe destination and a gateway to Asia and the Pacific.” 

The bureau is targeting U.S. organizations that fall within the organization’s priority sectors of medicine, science and the environment, technology and engineering, and business and education. The number of tradeshows, conventions and other events held annually in Melbourne can vary from year to year. During the 2011-12 fiscal year, there were 198 business events held in Melbourne that were secured by the MCB. And Melbourne’s expansive convention district and modern facilities are primed for greater participation and growth among North American organizations.

“The convention district follows the Yarra River from the cosmopolitan Docklands in the west to Melbourne’s world-renowned sporting precinct in the east and encompasses the city centre from the arts precinct in the south to the magnificent Carlton Gardens in the north,” said Swanson. “This area offers more than 600,000 square feet of conference space, the pinnacle of which is the award-winning Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, which boasts 52 meeting rooms of various sizes, nearly 100,000 square feet of column-free exhibition space, a 466-seat auditorium and a 5,500-seat, state-of-the-art plenary that can be divided into three acoustically separate theaters.

“The district also boasts over 15,000 accommodation rooms, ranging from luxurious to more budget-friendly options, many of which have access to onsite conferencing facilities. The MCB has hosted conventions of up to 14,000 delegates at one time.”

Increased participation in U.S.-based tradeshows and other marketing efforts is a key element of the MCB’s plans for growing participation among North American exhibitors and organizations.

“The MCB continues to build on its presence in the international association market through attendance at tradeshows held throughout the world and will be attending IMEX America in Las Vegas in October,” said Swanson. “The MCB also conducts sales missions and calls throughout North America and Canada to develop business leads and build mutually beneficial relationships.”

Among those mutually beneficial relationships is a global partnership with many Canadian and U.S. convention bureaus. 

“The MCB is a founding member of the BestCities Global Alliance – a network of 10 international convention bureaus, including Chicago, Houston and Vancouver, with which we work very closely to share knowledge, expertise and insights,” said Swanson.

With world-class convention facilities and a new focus on growing North American participation, Melbourne very well may solidify a position as one of the top destinations for U.S.-based exhibitors and tradeshow organizers.

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