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November 27, 2020
In this issue
Melbourne posts solid events results despite pandemic
Shirley Lin mourned by Accor, Arts community and The Dalai Lama
Stumped for a Christmas party idea? Look no further
AGM and Board elections underway for industry peak bodies
Your weekly grin and tonic


Melbourne posts solid events results despite pandemic
 
Released this week was the Melbourne Convention Bureau’s (MCB) annual report, which outlined impressive results for the 2019-20 financial year despite the coronavirus pandemic. During this time, the MCB secured 145 business events for Victoria, which are expected to collectively inject $234.3 million into the state’s economy in the coming years.
 
Speaking at the company’s annual general meeting, MCB chief executive Julia Swanson said her team was able to reschedule 70 per cent of events planned for 2020 to future years.
 
Continue reading here. 
Shirley Lin mourned by Accor, Arts community and The Dalai Lama
 
By Graeme Kemlo
 
Accor Australia is mourning the untimely death on November 13, 2020, of Sofitel Melbourne executive Shirley Lin.
 
As associate director of strategic partnerships for Sofitel Melbourne on Collins since January 2015, Shirley worked with the Australian Tibetan community and the Australian Federal Police (AFP) to ensure the success of the tour of Australia by The Dalai Lama.
 
Continue reading here. 
Stumped for a Christmas party idea? Look no further
 
We’ve discovered the perfect 2020 Christmas party idea for our industry: a virtual event paired with a tailored gift box courtesy of Virtual Event Box.
 
Virtual Event Box is a company that was launched last month by Connected Event Group, with its latest initiative comprising a number of packages, including a wine package that can be combined with a virtual event featuring a talented sommelier; a cooking package with ingredients which can be paired with a chef to deliver a virtual cooking class; and an Australian gin tasting box that can be combined with a virtual DJ, drag bingo and other entertainment options.
 
Commenting on the initiative, Connected Event Group director Libbie Ray said: “It’s been a really hard year for way too many people, and our goal is to give the business events industry new ways to keep connected with their clients, suppliers, staff and those that matter most.
 
“While restrictions are easing, our clients are telling us that their companies are not jumping back into organising major Christmas parties just yet – this is an opportunity to do something special to farewell a most awful year.”
 
Find out more about the initiative here. 
AGM and Board elections underway for industry peak bodies
 
By Joyce DiMascio
 
It’s AGM and board election season for the business events industry’s peak bodies. It’s been the toughest year on record for membership-based organisations.
 
The Business Events Council of Australia (BECA) met this week and Dr Vanessa Findlay continues as its independent chairperson.
 
At its AGM, Meetings and Events Australia (MEA) elected a new chairperson, Nigel Collin. MEA’s statement said the new board would meet in January to review its membership value proposition, identify new business opportunities and seek to strengthen its educational offering.
 
The Association of Australian Convention Bureaux (AACB) meets today and little change is expected to its core committee.
 
Coming up on December 8, 2020, the Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia (EEAA) is holding a combined AGM and Leaders Forum followed by the Awards for Excellence. There is strong interest in its board positions and elections will be held for organiser, venue and supplier positions.
 
Stay tuned for Joyce DiMascio’s two-part special report on the state of business events in Australia and whether industry advocacy has worked for our sector.
Your weekly grin and tonic
 
Do you ever find yourself looking for a sign? One that indicates how you should act, or which decision you should make, or on what course your life is headed?
 
Well, forget that. Instead, you should have a look at these funny signs that Darren Isenberg has compiled. Why? Because laughter is enjoyable, it’s Friday and we shouldn’t take life so seriously.
 
Have a watch of Darren’s latest grin and tonic video here. 
 
 
 
 
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