New figures released today by Cork Convention Bureau show that the conference and meeting industry in the Region is thriving. In 2012, the value of international conferences brought to Cork as a direct result of the Cork Convention Bureau activity resulted in total revenue of €7.2 million for the Region. The total value of international conferences secured by the Cork Convention Bureau now totals €31.2 million, with an increase of 200% year on year since the CCB was established in 2007. “Cork Convention Bureau has successfully attracted over 30 conferences over the last year to Cork, worth over €7 million. Today’s results are testament to the service being provided by the Cork Convention Bureau, and the impact on the economy that the meetings industry can yield”, said Chairman of Cork Convention Bureau, Seamus Heaney. “Many sectors in the Region benefit from the increased number of visitors that are choosing to come to Cork for an event or conference, including the hospitality, leisure, tourism and retail sector here”. A public-private partnership, the Cork Convention Bureau is supported by Cork City Council, Cork County Council, Cork Chamber, Cork Airport, the Irish Hotel Federation and Failte Ireland. The sole purpose of the organisation is to increase the number of business tourism opportunities, driving the meetings industry, for the Cork region. The figures released by Cork Convention Bureau mirror results of a recent national survey by the Association of Irish Professional Conference Organisers (AIPCO), which showed that delegate numbers at events in Ireland were increasing, and over 75% of industry players stating that their business performed better in 2012 than 2011. “We expect continued growth in the year ahead. Our activity and the increase in events choosing to come here further reaffirms the need for a Convention Centre for Cork.” added Chairman of Cork Convention Bureau, Seamus Heaney. “We already have a large number of events in the pipeline for 2013 such as the HHT Conference in June which will attract over 300 Medical Consultants mainly from the US. The University Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES) conference has been secured for Cork for September 2014 attracting up to 350 European delegates. We continue to proactively sell Cork internationally as a location for meetings and conferences” said Evelyn O’Sullivan, Business Tourism Manager at Cork Convention Bureau. Cork Convention Bureau has organised a Sales Event for it’s members and associate members in London on 21st February, securing over 40 UK based conference and event organisers to attend. On 20th February 2012 , the Bureau will welcome the Chairman of the Gathering, Tim O’Connor, to Cork to address a number of multinational and indigenous organisations that have the potential to bring new and sustained events to Cork in the future.