Conventions and Incentives New Zealand (CINZ) is launching a new event, BE Reconnected, in December 2020 aimed at post-COVID-19 recovery for hotels and venues.

According to CINZ, BE Reconnected will “focus on re-engaging and reconnecting vital industry relationships to help kick start business recovery”.

BE Reconnected will be hosted at Vodafone Events Centre in Auckland on 1 December and will replace this year’s multi-day ‘MEETINGS’ exhibition which was due to be held in the city this. The CINZ 2020 Conference and Annual General Meeting will then follow on 2 December.

CINZ Chief Executive, Lisa Hopkins, says New Zealand’s business events industry, which was valued at around NZD$500 million per year, has suffered immense losses and must be given every opportunity to recover.

“We have been looking at different ways to reconnect our members with customers, channels and each other, as part of the industry’s overall business recovery strategy,” she says.

“BE Reconnected will be a vital step in helping to secure business leads and super-charging the sector’s recovery. We want to engage buyers in multiple face-to-face opportunities over a short time, building new relationships and rekindling old ones,” she says.

“Business events are the highest-yielding component of the visitor economy. At the start of 2020, New Zealand was on the cusp of enormous business tourism growth with the opening of new conference venues, four and five-star hotels, national infrastructure, expanded airlines routes and new attractions. Instead, for many, there has been no business or revenue.

“As a key economic driver for our country, it is our organisation’s responsibility to plan and prepare for the recovery, for the sake of our clients, employees, community, regions and the industry.

“Our plan is to show both domestic and international clients that we are stronger, more passionate and more committed than ever to reconnect our customers with the incredible destinations, experiences and people of New Zealand, when a handshake, a hongi or a hug is no longer prohibited,” she says.

Hopkins says BE Reconnected will focus on maximising time with customer and the emphasis will be on conversation and relationship building versus an expansive programme and exhibition floor.

James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management