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May pays major business events dividends for Melbourne

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May pays major business events dividends for Melbourne
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) had its biggest month on record in May and Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) has confirmed business events drove $148 million in economic impact during the same month.

The results were underpinned by one of Melbourne’s most valuable business events in history being delivered in May – the Rotary International Convention for around 14,000 delegates, which, just on its own, contributed an estimated $91 million to the local economy.

Altogether, MCEC hosted 76 events in May, both business and consumer, for major sectors including health, hospitality and manufacturing.

Spineweek at the start of May brought together 1,500 scientists and clinicians from around the world, while FoodService Australia, a trade and conferencing event for the hospitality industry, saw 8,000 gather from the sector and Australian Manufacturing Week had attendance of 16,000 people from 29 countries.

On the consumer side, the Good Food and Wine Show, run by Talk2 Media, organisers of the Asia Pacific Incentives and Meetings Event (AIME), brought a further 26,000 members of the public into the venue.

The Rotary Convention was also held partly at MCEC, with the plenary sessions held at Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne Park over four days.

“In the first full year of operation post-COVID, MCEC has seen an enthusiastic return to in-person events, demonstrating our ability to bounce back and offer exceptional experiences for our customers,” said MCEC’s chief executive, Natalie O’Brien AM.

“The strong industry demand reinforces Melbourne’s reputation as a leading international events destination.

“We are proud to host major business events at MCEC that welcome industry leaders from a range of different fields to connect, collaborate and discuss important issues, leading to breakthrough research and leading social policy.”

As well as confirming business events filled 61,375 hotel room nights in May, MCB has also flagged additional recent wins for Melbourne, including a 3,000 pax incentive out of India for Herbalife in November this year, the World Congress on Leisure Travel in 2027, the 21st International Celiac Disease Symposium in 2026, and the International Conference on Ocean Energy in 2024.

The bureau has secured a pipeline of 147 international and national business events for Melbourne up until 2028, worth more than $821 million.

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