Chair of the Business Events Council of Australia (BECA), Dr Vanessa Findlay, said she believes a division is occurring within the business events industry when it comes to recovery. Addressing the virtual and in-person audiences at the Professional Conference Organiser Association’s (PCOA) 13th Annual Hybrid Conference yesterday, Dr Findlay said that a close eye is being kept on what appears to be a two-speed recovery within the sector.

“There is a component of the business events industry who is reporting high levels of confidence and strong bookings, and other components, mainly in the supply chain for business events, who remain in really challenging positions,” she said.

“We are working to get to the bottom of the main reason for this distinction. Whether the reporting is based on sentiment that is yet to convert into actual business, or whether the conversion has occurred but is yet to flow through to the supply chain.

“Answering this must gain our immediate focus, otherwise we risk leaving parts of our industry behind.”

Dr Findlay also said that the recovery of the business events industry will happen in phases dependent on the dictates of government and the response from businesses.

She said she believes business travel “will return”, and that BECA and PCOA are closely watching the evolution of company travel policies and their decision-making criteria which includes business travel expenses, the necessity to travel, liability factors and the purposes of business events.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Daily Business Events Update for more insights from Dr Findlay.