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ITB Asia 2021 Virtual finishes on a high with 42,100 business meetings and exchanges



Singapore, 29 October 2021 – Today marks the successful conclusion of the extensive event programme, networking opportunities and business-driven discussions at ITB Asia 2021. For the first time, Asia’s leading travel trade show spanned an entire week, and as usual covered both current and forward-looking leisure, MICE, corporate travel and travel technology topics.


An impressive 42,100 business meetings and exchanges were recorded throughout the week, representing an increase of 31 percent from 2020. The event hosted over 900 buyers and 400 sponsors & exhibitors from around the world who participated in the show's vibrant agenda of conferences and networking sessions, supported by leading global companies and destinations, including Best Western Hotels & Resorts, Busan Tourism Organisation, Business Events Perth, Danang Center for Tourism Promotion, Department of Information and Tourism,Taipei City Government, Far East Hospitality, Frasers Hospitality, Goyang Convention Bureau, Gyeonggi Tourism Organisation, Jeju Convention Bureau, Leningrad Region, Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Bureau, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Organisation, Melbourne Convention Bureau, Melia Hotels Group, St. Petersburg Convention Bureau, United Airlines, Worldhotels Collection, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts and Yokohama Convention Bureau.


The show featured more than 3,200 exhibitor showcases, creating a favorable marketplace for buyers and sellers to engage in meaningful business meetings and discussions. Asia’s leading travel trade show, which was eagerly awaited by the industry, was hosted virtually on the well-established online platform, ITB Community in Asia (ITB Community).


Katrina Leung, Managing Director of Messe Berlin (Singapore), the organiser of ITB Asia shared: “We are proud that with this year’s virtual ITB Asia, we were once again able to provide a unique meeting platform for the travel industry in surely one of the most challenging times. I am very pleased with the outcome of the show. Building on our experience with the virtual edition last year, we were able to further expand the event format and give our clients more opportunities for interactive engagements with the travel community. We look forward to welcoming the industry back in-person in Singapore from 19 – 21 October 2022, bringing back human connections through face-to-face business meetings and networking sessions. I would also like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank this year’s Elite Partners, Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) and the Saudi Tourism Authority, for their support and cooperation over the past months”.


Recovery and growth of travel represented the 2021 conference theme


Under the overarching theme of “The Decade Ahead: Braving New Realities in Travel”, this year’s conference programme delivered captivating insights on how to lead the industry towards recovery and growth, setting the tone for the changes that the industry is likely to see in the next months. Over 150 key industry experts delivered fascinating insights at the keynote sessions, as well as focused topics for the MICE and Corporate segment, Leisure Travel, the Travel Tech space and Tours, Activities & Attractions amongst others.


With the virtual format of the trade show, over 250 sessions have been made available on-demand for all registered delegates to view and watch again till 28 November 2021.


The following is an overview of a selection of exciting sessions and speakers from the past conference:


  • What Will Your Future Cruise Look Like? Ben Angell, Vice President & Managing Director, APAC, Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL)

  • Rebuilding Travel Post-Vaccine Julia Simpson, President & CEO, World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC)

  • When Will Asia Pacific Travel Again? Laura Houldsworth, Managing Director & Vice President Asia Pacific, Booking.com

  • The New Normal for the Hotel Business Nicolas Huss, CEO, Hotelbeds Carlos Muñoz, CCO, Hotelbeds

  • The Evolution of the Traveller Through COVID-19 Stephen Kaufer, President & CEO, Tripadvisor

Sessions led by MICE profiles

  • Beyond Hybrid – The Future of Experiential Anna Patterson, Vice President & Managing Director, George P. Johnson (Singapore) Private Limited Experience Marketing

  • What US Corporations Are Saying About Incentive Trave Aoife Delaney, President, SITE - Society for Incentive Travel Excellence

  • The New Agents of Change Dan Rivlin, CEO, Kenes Group

  • Leadership in Times of Crisis Jocelyne Mülli, Managing Director, K.I.T. Group GmbH

Sessions led by Corporate Travel profiles

  • Back on the Road – New Era, New Rules! Will Business Travel Be the Same Again? Bertrand Saillet, Managing Director, FCM Travel Asia

  • Environmental, Social and Governance: Business Travel’s Responsibilities Brett Thomson, General Manager, Corporate Travel, TAG Global Travel and Events

  • Navigating Through the Industry’s Greatest Crisis Carl Jones, Vice President, Head of Strategy, Asia Pacific, SAP Concur

  • How Digital Nomads and Bleisure Are Re-Defining the Future of Business Travel David Hughes, Managing Director, Asia Pacific, UNIGLOBE Travel International

  • High Touch Service in the Digital Age Jane Warren, CEO, APAC & ME, Reed & Mackay

  • Business Travel Post-Vaccine: A Reset for 2022 Michelle McKinney Frymire, CEO, CWT

  • Corporate Travel Megatrends Suzanne Neufang, CEO, GBTA - Global Business Travel Association

Sessions led by Accommodation and Hotels profiles

  • COVID-19 – Emerging Stronger and Better David Kong, President & CEO, BWH Hotel Group

  • How the Extended-Stay Segment is Leading the Journey to Recovery Dean Schreiber, CEO, Oakwood

  • Asia Pacific Recovery: How Hoteliers Can Reignite Confidence in Travel Joon Aun Ooi, President, Asia Pacific, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts

  • Shifting Sands: How We Can Adapt to Changing Perceptions of Travel Michael Marshall, CCO, Minor Hotels

  • Restoring Travellers’ Confidence Olivier Berrivin, Managing Director - APAC, WorldHotels

  • The Future of Family Travel: RE-connecting or DE-connecting? Rachael Harding, CEO of East, South Asia and Pacific, Club Med

  • Banking on Technology and EQ to Thrive Through the Recovery and Beyond Rainer Stampfer, President, Hotel Operations - APAC, Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts

  • People, Communities and Our Big Opportunity Rajit Sukumaran, Managing Director, South East Asia and Korea, IHG Hotels & Resorts

  • A CEO’s Vision of Recovery and Opportunity William (Bill) J. Hornbuckle, CEO & President, MGM Resorts International

Sessions led by Travel Technology profiles

  • How Will Technology Change Travel? Eric Bailey, Global Director, Travel, Meetings & Payments, Microsoft Shane O'Flaherty, Global Director, Travel, Transport, Logistics & Hospitality, Microsoft

  • Technology, Travel and COVID Recovery John Brown, CEO, Agoda Timothy Hughes, Vice President, Corporate Development, Agoda

  • Accelerating Hospitality’s Recovery: The Vital Role of Technology Patrick Andres, Regional Vice President Asia-Pacific, Oracle Hospitality

  • Technology and the Future of Travel Renaud Nicolle, Senior Vice President, Business Travel, Amadeus, Asia Pacific

Sessions led by Tours, Activities & Attractions profiles

  • The Next Generation of Technological Innovation in the Travel Sector Dana Dunne, CEO, eDreams ODIGEO

  • How Will Tours & Activities Support the Return of Travel? David Schelp, CEO of TUI Musement, Member of the TUI Group Executive Committee

  • New Ways of Generating Business for Tours and Activities Enrique Ybarra, Founder, President & CEO, City Sightseeing Worldwide

  • The Future of Travel Experiences - Adopting Digital While Retaining a Genuine Human Touch Hamish Keith, CEO, EXO Travel Group

  • The Tomorrow’s DMCs Stephan Roemer, CEO, Diethelm Travel Group

  • Making Every Travel Experience Count Through Sustainability Wolf Paunic, President, Trafalgar

Save the date: ITB Asia 2022 live in Singapore again Next year’s edition of ITB Asia is scheduled to take place as an in-person event in Singapore from 19-21 October 2022. Stand registration for ITB Asia 2022 is available through this link. For more information on ITB Asia 2022, the sales brochure can be downloaded here.

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