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Pictured L-R: Martin Sirk, former ICCA CEO, and Dennis Speet, acting ICCA CEO.

The board of the International Congress and Convention Association announced on June 27 that long-serving CEO Martin Sirk is set to step down from his position with the association at the end of July. With Sirk’s departure, the ICCA board will be working with new leadership to drive the association forward over the coming decade, and to identify and implement new business models that will future-proof ICCA in what is certain to be a dynamic and hyper-competitive environment.

Sirk joined ICCA as CEO in 2002 and has led the association as it grew from 600 to more than 1,100 member companies and organizations in 97 countries.

“16 years is an exceptionally long period in any role, and I’m immensely proud of the team in Amsterdam and our regional offices around the world,” says Sirk. “I believe I have played a major role in safeguarding the unique culture of ICCA–genuinely global, friendly and open-minded, but always business-focused–throughout the many changes that we have gone through. I wish my successor joy and success with this extraordinary association, which I feel honored to have had the opportunity to serve.”

ICCA is set to appoint a new CEO at the earliest opportunity and plans to appoint an international recruitment firm to assist with the selection and evaluation process. Effective immediately, ICCA’s Chief Value Officer Dennis Speet will lead the association as its acting CEO.

“We would like to thank Martin for his many years of dedicated service,” says ICCA President Nina Freysen Pretorius. “He has laid the foundations for the next era of ICCA’s development, and the ICCA board is now determined to identify the right individual to work with us in realizing our ambitious long-term vision for tomorrow’s ICCA. We anticipate that there will be many challenges but also some enormous opportunities to expand our business community and to deliver new and even better value to our members, and I know that the future of our association is very bright.”

ICCA (International Congress and Convention Association) represents the world’s leading suppliers in handling, transporting and accommodating international meetings and events, and now comprises more than 1,100 member companies and organizations in almost 100 countries worldwide. ICCA has specialized in the international association meetings sector since its establishment 55 years ago, offering unrivaled data, communication channels, and business development opportunities. ICCA members represent the top destinations worldwide and the most experienced specialist suppliers. International meeting planners can rely on the ICCA network to find solutions for all their event objectives, such as: venue selection; technical and strategic advice; assistance with delegate transportation; full convention planning or ad hoc services. For more info, visit iccaworld.org.

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