Emiliano García: "The indicators are optimistic and point to levels of business similar to 2019"
The Valencia Conference Centre’s Board of Directors has approved the budget and business plan for the 2022 financial year
According to the report presented, the drop in the number of coronavirus cases and the preventive measures introduced have paved the way for the Centre’s activities to progressively pick up speed, increasing the initial revenue forecast from congress activities in 2022 by 59% compared to 2021.
The Chairman of the Board of Directors, Emiliano García, explained that “although we prefer to be cautious about the evolution of the pandemic, all the indicators are optimistic when it comes to next year’s events. Business is expected to bounce back to levels similar to 2019, one of the best years in the building’s history”.
Thanks to the financial support of the Valencia City Council over the last two years, in which the MICE tourism sector has been hard hit by the health crisis caused by COVID-19, the Conference Centre expects to break even at the end of 2021, excluding borrowing and external funding.
Furthermore, it is estimated that, for the next financial year, the venue will be able to assume its funding needs with the financial resources envisaged (profit from the 2022 financial year and subsidies). The report presented to the board shows a reduction in its financial dependence on the City Council, lowering the management subsidy by 75% compared to 2021. The planned investments include replacing the seats in auditoriums 1 and 2 after more than 23 years of use, at a cost of €1.8 million. According to Emiliano García, “renewing the seating in the auditoria, which had to be postponed because of COVID-19, is once again a priority in order to maintain the venue’s state-of-the-art infrastructure and continue to be a benchmark for attracting more events”.
The Board has approved the business plan presented for 2022, which is based on initiatives that enable rapid adaptation to the new environment by improving competitiveness and digitally transforming processes, among other aspects. “The lines of action set out, the main objective of which is to return to the level of business performance achieved before the pandemic will in any case be compatible with the environmental and social commitment that characterises the Centre and will be aligned with the city’s sustainability strategy”, said García. “Our aim is for Valencia to continue to be a hub for national and international congress tourism thanks to the existence of first-class facilities that promote sustainable development and guarantee the well-being of today’s society and of future generations”.
Events in 2021 and prospects for 2022
Thanks to the upturn in business in 2021, mainly over the last few months, the Valencia Conference Centre will end the year with a total of over 80 events and 40,000 participants, generating more than 30,000 overnight stays in the city. Congresses and conventions account for a quarter of these meetings.
The outlook for 2022 is very encouraging, with business levels similar to 2019 and a large number of international events, even outweighing national meetings. At present, 31 congresses and conventions have been confirmed or are very close to being finalised, which will bring around 20,000 delegates and over 55,000 overnight stays to the city. Some of the most significant meetings to be hosted at the Conference Centre include Digital Dentistry and New Technologies, SIOP EUROPE’s Annual Meeting, BILT-BCS Europe 2022, the European Astronomical Society’s Annual Meeting (EAS 2022) and the International Zeolite Congress.