Mark Bullock, Radisson Hotel Group Managing Director, Australasia Business Unit
Mark Bullock, Radisson Hotel Group Managing Director, Australasia Business Unit

The upcoming 2020 Australian Hotel Industry Conference and Exhibition (AHICE), headline sponsored by Intrust Super and Hostplus, will set a benchmark for virtual participation across a major industry event during the pandemic, with the event to offer online interactivity and networking opportunities.

Delegates registering for the event, taking place at Hyatt Regency Sydney on 8-9 September, will receive special access to a program called ‘Chime’ provided by Encore Events.

Encore Events will provide virtual networking for Design Inn and AHICE 2020.

Highly user-friendly, the Chime system allows viewers to access the program schedule, a list of speakers and their intro bios and information about sponsors including Diamond partners, Intrust Super and Hostplus.

Along the top is a button offering access to the Live Stream of the event, which will open in a separate window to allow users to maximise the screen if they choose, or to keep it in the corner of their monitor while they continue working. Virtual registration for AHICE and Design Inn will allow delegates to view presentations for a month following the event. Sections within presentations can be bookmarked to enable quick access later if you wish to return to a particular area.

The full program line-up and speaker list will be available on Chime.

Users can contribute to a range of poll questions which will be posed from the stage at various stages throughout the event. The same screen will allow viewers to pose questions to delegates, which will be transmitted to the host to put to the intended presenter and receive a response. Depending on the volume of questions, the host will try to get to as many questions as possible but can’t guarantee each one will be answered individually.

Users can vote on polls and ask questions of presenters via this section.

An exciting new feature for AHICE and Design Inn 2020 will be the introduction of Virtual Networking, which will allow delegates viewing from their home or office the opportunity to chat to a presenter via text or video and exchange virtual Business Cards. These will either be sent to users after the event or can be manually exchanged using the top corner menu.

This section requires some set-up so it is advised that virtual delegates fill out this information as soon as they are given access to the system in order to maximise its use.

Once a connection is made and accepted, this will open up the Chat functionality to continue the conversation at a later time.

Virtual networking will facilitate connections old and new and open doors for future business.

Confirmed speakers for AHICE include Accor’s Michael Issenberg and Simon McGrath, Hilton’s Heidi Kunkel, IHG’s Kenneth Macpherson and Leanne Harwood, Marriott’s Craig Smith and Sean Hunt, Outrigger’s Jeff Wagoner, key investors Dr Jerry Schwartz, Jure Domazet, Marianne Ossovani, Ronald Barrott and many more.

Virtual registrations are now open for AU$150 for two days – including access to the 2020 Design Inn Symposium (held on the morning of Sep 8) – and it will provide unrivalled virtual access to a hotel industry event held during 2020.

With the new virtual ticket package, delegates will have access to all sessions live and will also be able to view the recordings of the sessions for up to a month after the event. The aim is to provide virtual delegates with an inclusive and engaging experience.