More than 600 business events professionals and conference organisers will converge on Auckland this week, as Conventions and Incentives New Zealand’s (CINZ) flagship MEETINGS tradeshow kicks off for another year.

Some 185 New Zealand exhibitors will be on show at Auckland’s ASB Showgrounds, with more than 6,000 meetings scheduled over the next two days.

“MEETINGS is two days of non-stop networking where we get to showcase the very best of what New Zealand has to offer,” newly appointed CINZ chief executive, Sue Sullivan, said.

“MEETINGS is essentially a one-stop-shop for buyers, where they can see what new products and services are on the market and make business connections within the New Zealand industry that will help make organising their next big conference or event easier.”

For the first time the exhibition will be staged across two large pavilions allowing more space and flexibility for exhibitors and new opportunities for networking.

MEETINGS event manager Jeanette Stanton says increasing interest from buyers in New Zealand’s luxury or boutique offerings has led to the creation of a new dedicated luxury exhibition space, The Luxury Collection.

“Here we’ll be showcasing incentive travel products from boutique lodges through to luxury yachts and gourmet catering.

“Regional convention bureaux will also take centre stage at this year’s show, with seminars and briefings updating buyers about the free expert services and local knowledge they provide.”

More than 50 Australian buyers were hosted on pre-show famil tours over the weekend, exploring Hamilton and Waikato, Rotorua, Taupo, Wellington, Christchurch and Canterbury, and Queenstown.

Later in the week Tourism New Zealand will also take its contingent of international buyers on a series of post-MEETINGS famil tours around the country.

MEETINGS 2014 officially begins tonight (June 17) with a welcome function at the Pullman Auckland Hotel.

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