In 2017, Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) hosted a total of 442 regional and international events. Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Group CEO, ADNEC, shares how the company takes pride in organising events that cater to the development of key economic sectors in the country.
How do you manage to attract key MiCE events to the capital?
Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), as part of its mission to position Abu Dhabi as a thriving tourism destination of choice and a global hub for the MiCE industry, has entered into collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau and the Department of Culture and Tourism (DCT), to promote the capital as a preferred destination. ADNEC recently joined the delegation from Abu Dhabi, headed by the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, to IMEX Frankfurt, Europe’s biggest trade exhibition in the MiCE industry, with the aim of consolidating the company’s global position in this crucial sector. We are also targeting international associations in line with our efforts to become a preferred destination for important international events and congresses on a global rotation process.
What are your strategies to promote ADNEC?
ADNEC enjoys memberships in the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry (UFI), the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), the International Association of Convention Centres (AIPC), as well as the Association of Event Venues (AEV). This has not only enhanced the image of ADNEC globally but also widened the company’s portfolio of industry defining international events, congresses and exhibitions. ADNEC has also signed an MoU with the Emirates Medical Association (EMA) and the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, part of the DCT, in an initiative that is set to position Abu Dhabi as an international medical meetings hub. This move will increase the number of international medical conferences hosted in Abu Dhabi and provide unique educational opportunities for medical practitioners throughout the region. By hosting a growing number of events in Abu Dhabi, ADNEC has managed to highlight the city’s unique geographical positioning. The emirate’s record of excellence across parameters like safety and security, economic growth, technology adoption as well as quality of life, have all received significant global attention and helped increase business tourism. Acquiring key global venues like ExCel London has helped bolster ADNEC’s reputation internationally. Currently, the company also owns the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, as well as the Al Ain Convention Centre.
What are some of ADNEC’s key MiCE events which attract visitors from across the world?
Our flagship exhibition, the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX), is a prominent gathering of industry leaders and decision makers, showcasing cutting-edge technologies and defence systems. The Naval Defence Exhibition (NAVDEX) also runs in conjunction with IDEX every other year. The 2017 edition of IDEX and NAVDEX attracted more than 105,000 visitors and over 1,200 exhibitors, and secured deals worth AED19.17 billion. The company hosted other leading events, including the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair 2018, featuring 1,350 exhibitors from 63 countries across an exhibition space spanning of 35,000 square metres at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. The Joint International Conferences on Medical Education – the 18th Ottawa and the 5th ICME – witnessed over 1,000 medical education experts from 56 countries convened for five days.
What are your plans for 2018 and what markets are you looking to tap to promote events?
ADNEC is focusing on vital economic sectors that fall in line with the 12 non-oil sectors identified in the Abu Dhabi Vision 2030, such as education, health, technology, finance and more. To cater to Abu Dhabi’s leisure marine sector, ADNEC is organising the inaugural edition of the Abu Dhabi International Boat Show (ADIBS) 2018 to be held from October 17-20. The event is anticipated to be the largest ever gathering of leisure marine and luxury yachting in Abu Dhabi.