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12/2017

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Warwick Conferences is celebrating the first anniversary of its ground breaking new venue, The Slate. The unique and flexible flat-floor space has been operational since December 2016, hosting 118 events and welcoming 17,269 delegates through its doors.

The success of The Slate’s entry to market has surpassed the University of Warwick based venue’s expectations. In just one year, the venue has achieved over £1.3 million worth of business in 2016-17 and has confirmed 123 events in 2017-18, totalling to the value of £2.8 million. Looking to the future, the conference and events venue has £6.3 million worth of both confirmed and provisional events in the pipeline

Over the last 12 months The Slate has been significant in widening the operational capabilities of Warwick Conferences. Its 650sqm of contemporary and highly flexible event space can facilitate up to 400 delegates and is available for single-use only, offering upmost exclusivity to clients. The venue has attracted influential industry sectors, in particular confirming events with significant market leaders from the manufacturing, automotive and retail market sectors.

The venue not only meets the high level of demand for high capacity, high facility and flexible event space in Central England, but it’s been built with sustainability and versatility in mind. Its architecture is BREEAM excellent rated and optimised with high wooden-crossbeam ceiling for acoustic excellence. Its reinforced flooring is capable of supporting two 4x4 cars and boasts a full-length glass façade, with an impressive lakeside view.

The flexibility of the venue means it can host anything from car launches, residential dinners, large staff annual conferences and award ceremonies. The residential bookings secured as a result of the large-scaled events has enhanced the occupancy of the accommodation available at Warwick Conferences’ training and conference centres, resulting in bedrooms operating at full occupancy most weeks.

Richard Harrison, Head of Conference Centres, says: “Opening a new venue is always a challenge, but the extensive market research we carried out prior to the conceptualisation of The Slate indicated to us that there was significant demand for this unique style of event space.  Everything from the layout, food and branding of the venue is tailor-made to the client’s individual needs, there’s no barriers and that’s what makes it so memorable for the customer. In a crowded marketplace, clients are no longer just looking for a venue, but the delivery of an unforgettable experience which marks a successful event. The decision to commission the building of this new venue has been fully justified by the incredibly successful first year we have just experienced.

“The venue has been used by a diverse range of organisations, all of which have used the space in a completely different way to achieve their objectives. The Slate has proved itself as a valuable addition to the venue market and Warwick Conferences’ portfolio. The new venue is the essence of our strapline ‘anything is possible’ and has been revolutionary in enabling us to stay one step ahead of the dynamic and ever-evolving industry we operate in.”

 

Love Business 2018, the largest free business exhibition in the East Midlands has moved to Holywell Park, Loughborough – part of the Imago Venues portfolio.

“The venue is perfectly designed to accommodate the growing needs of the Love Business Expo’s exhibitors and delegates,” comments Stephen Megson, director of Love Business East Midlands.  “Spread across three halls and the speaker theatre, with more than 100 exhibitors, 3,000 visitors, hospitality, WiFi and free car parking for 2,000 - Love Business 2018 will be our most exciting event to date.”

Megson continues: “Following the closure of our previous venue, we were looking for somewhere central to the region that is fresh, exciting and focused on the delivery of great service.  Holywell Park is the perfect solution as it combines all those attributes, whilst being the biggest venue in the region with free parking – a major plus point for our attendees.”

The event will take place on 22nd February, 2018.

Imago Venue’s senior business development manager, Helen Cuddy commented; “We are very proud of the capabilities, facilities and service levels at Holywell Park.  As a dedicated venue it offers a focused environment for our clients where they can achieve their goals away from other distractions.  Love Business’ decision to choose us after the closure of their previous venue, which had been their home for five years, is a testament to the scope and quality of our offering and credibility within the local market.  We are truly excited to be welcoming so many businesses to the venue.  We are a true part of the local community and this is a fantastic opportunity to get closer to a host of local organisations.  We look forward to the success of the event in February.”

Holywell Park recently achieved VenueVerdict Gold for the 6th time in recognition of its exemplary service levels.  The standard is given to properties recording a twelve-month Net Promoter Score of +70 or higher from Business Event Host responses in the previous twelve-month period.

Imago Venues brings together Loughborough University’s conference and events venues under one brand.  They provide high quality meeting spaces, venues and accommodation along with world leading sports and leisure facilities.

For more information visit www.welcometoimago.com or call 01509 633030.

Warwick Conferences is celebrating a significant win for its home city of Coventry after the city was named ‘UK City of Culture 2021’. Warwick Conferences is the conference, meetings and events venue based at the University of Warwick, a principal partner of Coventry’s bid.

Martin Reeves, Chief Executive of Coventry City Council, said: “Coventry’s UK City of Culture bid is built on robust evidence and shows the scale of the step change that winning the title would bring to such a diverse city.” The win is set to welcome £80 million investment into the region.

The University supported the bid, leading on research and programming, with further significant resources contributed to supporting the marketing, communications, fundraising and education aspects of the submission. This achievement will create opportunities for Warwick Conferences to contribute to the 2021 activity, such as hosting cultural conferences as well as supporting destination and tourism aims.

Richard Harrison, Director of Warwick Conferences, said: “We’re thrilled with this result. Warwick Conferences already plays a significant role in attracting the corporate pound to the city; last year we hosted 17,500 events and saw 178,000 delegates pass through our conference centres and conference park. We feel we’ll have so much more to contribute to the city’s positioning in the UK moving forward and this win will also champion our commitment to the visitor experience and tourism in the city. We’re known for our creative and innovative approach but not many people know that we’re also a charitable organisation and CSR sits at the heart of what we do in so many ways. This includes our commitment to being a good employer, our close work with the soil association and sustainability programmes, as well as the reinvestment of our profits into our local community outreach programmes, campus development and academic research – fitting closely with core themes of the bid itself.”

The 2021 Coventry bid also had a primary focus on the city’s people: “At Warwick Conferences, we take conscientious employment seriously – we directly employ staff from local areas and we pay them the living wage,” says Harrison.  “We also work closely with local apprenticeship providers, schools and students at the University itself to support inspiration programmes, pathways to employment and providing personal developmental opportunities. It is our objective to generate further skills, expertise and experience to support the development of the people of Coventry.”

The University of Warwick is one of Coventry’s largest employers. Professor Stuart Croft, Vice Chancellor, said: “We champion social, cultural and economic development in Coventry and we are proud to be a partner for growth. Welcoming over 150,000 delegates to the region during last summer, it is apparent how indispensable the facilities of Warwick Conferences will be in attracting visitors, particularly in the run up to 2021 and beyond. City of Culture is an astounding opportunity. The business tourism this will create will be reflected in our further development of innovative, unique and modern meeting and event spaces on the Warwick campus. We are truly excited to show what value companies will get from bringing business to Coventry.”

BCD Meetings & Events (BCD M&E) has signed an agreement to acquire Grass Roots Meetings & Events from Blackhawk Network Holdings, Inc. Grass Roots Meetings & Events is a division of Grass Roots Group Holdings, Ltd. and specializes in strategic meetings management and delegate management. The acquisition will strengthen and diversify BCD M&E’s global service offering.

“We have been strategically investing to grow our global presence and service offering over the last three years,” said Scott Graf, BCD M&E Global President. “This acquisition is about strengthening local Event operations, offering new venue sourcing technology and expanding our delegate management solution.”

BCD M&E will welcome 220 employees, including respected leaders and industry professionals, with local expertise in the UK, Germany, US, Switzerland and Singapore. Additionally, BCD M&E can offer customers additional and expanded capabilities within its Events and venue sourcing services as well as an integrated delegate management solution.

“Grass Roots Meetings & Events has built a phenomenal offering across the globe—one that is a solid complement to our current business,” said Nigel Cooper, BCD M&E Managing Director, EMEA. “We saw a strong cultural fit with the organization and realized our services are stronger together than apart. In addition to the expanded capabilities, no other organization can offer an end-to-end delegate management solution such as this.”

With a strong brand reputation in the industry, Grass Roots Meetings & Events manages over £150m of meeting spend, drives compliance within organizations and focuses on improving the performance of meetings and events programs. The company operates meetings and events services from key locations in the UK (Fleet and London), New York, Dusseldorf, Zurich and Singapore. As specialists in strategic meetings management and delegate management, they work with three of the Big Four professional services firms, nine of the top 15 investment banks and many other global organizations.

“We have always focused on developing a team of experts with a deep understanding of not just the market but also what our customers need,” said David Taylor, Managing Director, Grass Roots Meetings & Events. “Being a part of a global organization that is focused on being a leader in corporate meetings and events will open new doors of opportunity for both our customers and our employees.”

Grass Roots was acquired by Blackhawk Network in 2016. Blackhawk previously shared its intention to sell the Grass Roots Meetings & Events division. Blackhawk Network will retain ownership of the Grass Roots parent company.

Cavendish Venues are proud to congratulate Eleni Semertzaki who was studying at the University of Westminster on achieving her Master of Arts MA in Events and Conference Management.

Events and conferences play an essential role in the business, cultural and sporting life of all countries. In recent years an exciting new profession has emerged with conference/events planners and managers organising a diverse range of events, and marketing the great variety of destinations and venues in which they take place.

This course was specifically designed for people who want to enter, or make further progress in, management-level careers in the fast-expanding field of events and conferences. London is an ideal place in which to study events and conference management. A regular host of world class sports and culture events such as Wimbledon, the London Marathon, Notting Hill carnival and the London Fashion Week, as well as one-off mega events such as the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics games and the 2015 Rugby World Cup, London is widely recognised as a world events capital. With several hundred conference venues and an abundance of international business and leisure events, London is a world leader in this dynamic industry.

Eleni’s course teaches how and why events and conferences are planned and marketed. Also how events and conferences contribute to enriching the lives of communities and improve communications in business, politics and professional life. The dissertation Eleni completed (with the aid of surveys kindly assisted by Cavendish Venues and Westminster Venue Collection members) gave further opportunity to research a conference or events topic in depth. The course is taught by experienced academics and industry practitioners, providing valuable insight into this exciting industry sector.

https://www.westminster.ac.uk/tourism-and-events-courses/2018-19/september/full-time/events-and-conference-management-ma

Having started as an Intern assisting the Diary Team, Eleni not only received her graduation certificate (pictured at the Royal Festival Hall on the Southbank) but also graduated to a permanent position recently. This is another example of the continued and valued belief at Cavendish Venues in developing talent in our industry.

Your events can achieve top marks too when you book with Cavendish Venues so why not enquire now with eleni@cavendishvenues.com or call us on 020 7706 7700.

The Searcys team at 30 Euston Square took part in the BrainWave 5K Santa Dash alongside 250 other runners yesterday, as part of ‘Searcys Sprinters’ - the company’s recreational running team.  In preparation for the run the team raised £1,050 for BrainWave.

BrainWave is a charity that helps children with disabilities and additional needs to achieve a more fulfilled and independent life. There is a focus on improving mobility, communication skills, and learning potential, through a range of educational and physical therapies. More information on the charity can be found at www.brainwave.org.uk

Meera Vaghela, Senior Sales Manager at 30 Euston Square comments: “We are proud of our runners and 5k is a real achievement for those who have little running experience.  It was a great way to come together as a team at the start of the festive season.  It is the second time we have taken part in the run and once again we were all relieved and delighted to be greeted at the finish with some Searcys bubbles.”

Pictures and updates of the team’s progress can be found on @30EustonSquare’s Twitter timeline. 

Further donations can be made via: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/30escrackers

30 Euston Square, home of the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP), is a conference, meetings and events venue in the heart of London. Conveniently situated next to a major transport hub, 30 Euston Square is an ideal venue for both domestic and international delegates travelling to London for business.

For more information on holding an event please call 020 8453 4600 or email 30eustonsquare@searcys.co.uk

Just a few days after winning gold at the Leicestershire promotions Tourism and Hospitality Awards for Best Team, Holywell Park has joined Venues of Excellence.

Holywell Park, which is part of the Imago Venues' portfolio, will be Venues of Excellence’s 40th member - marking a significant landmark in the nationwide collection's growth plans.

Venues of Excellence, Executive Director, Mandy Jennings comments:  "We are absolutely delighted to welcome Holywell Park as our 40th member. Since our rebrand to Venues of Excellence in 2016 we have seen a host of diverse members come on board and Holywell Park is the perfect example of that growth. With purpose-built conference rooms available for exclusive-use and flexible spaces for a range of capacities, Holywell offers a real point of difference amongst our members.”

Jennings concludes: "There are huge opportunities ahead for Venues of Excellence’s members such as Holywell Park as we now rival several of the UK’s well-known hotel chains.  That scale gives us a powerful presence in the market, which I am excited to develop as we deliver results for our members.”

Imago Venues' head of sales and marketing, Emma Boynton responded by saying: "Holywell Park has undergone significant investment and is now perfectly placed to join Venues of Excellence.  Our team there is dedicated to delivering truly memorable events for clients.  Most importantly though their success is focused on their ability to come together and deliver as a cohesive team with a desire to excel.  Feedback from clients using Holywell Park is constantly superb and I look forward to seeing the impact membership of Venues of Excellence will have."

As part of Imago Venues' ongoing improvements, they are phasing in the launch of new websites for each property within the portfolio.  Holywell Park's has gone live to coincide with its membership of Venues of Excellence - find out more at www.holywell-park.co.uk

Imago Venues brings together Loughborough University’s conference and events venues under one brand.  They provide high quality meeting spaces, venues and accommodation along with world leading sports and leisure facilities.

For more information visit www.welcometoimago.com or call 01509 633030.

The Political Studies Association once again chose the Westminster venue to host their annual Awards Dinner and Ceremony last Tuesday 5th December.

Hosted by Channel 4 News presenter, Jon Snow, the PSA awards are an occasion to recognise exceptional contributions to politics in 2017. Founded in 1950, the Political Studies Association is open to everyone interested in the study of politics and has an international membership including academics, policy-makers and the media.

With an aim to promote the study and understanding of politics, the PSA arrange two main annual events  - the awards and an international conference. Continuing to grow in prominence, the awards were held at Church House for the seventh year running and successfully attracted over 200 guests.

With categories ranging from Politician of the Year to Contribution to the Arts and Culture, this year also saw the launch of a new annual prize, named in honour of Jo Cox – the Jo Cox Prize for Public Service and Active Citizenship – in recognition of early career Politics academics. Following nominations by PSA members, the winners were chosen by a specially convened Awards Committee.

Avnish Patel, organiser of the awards comments: “The Political Studies Association is delighted to be able to hold its Annual Awards Dinner at Church House. It's Westminster location is perfect, and the Assembly Hall is a fantastic space to hold a large dinner. The events and AV teams at Church House are very professional and are excellent to work with.”

General Manager, Robin Parker comments: “For the seventh year in a row we are delighted to welcome the Political Study Awards back to Church House. This prestigious event, and its audience of leading political and media figures is always one of the highlights of our busy Autumn season. Being situated in the heart of Westminster and with our historical association with Parliament, the awards do feel like a natural fit and I hope that we will be able to welcome them for many years to come.”

Church House Westminster is one of London’s most versatile event venues. The AIM Gold accredited venue offers 19 flexible event spaces, which accommodate between 2 and 664 guests, and hosts a wide variety of events including meetings, conferences, awards ceremonies, gala dinners and receptions. For more information call 020 7390 1590 or visit www.churchhouseconf.co.uk.

Leading serviced apartment providers, SilverDoor and Citybase Apartments, today announce the formation of a new parent company, Habicus Group.

The creation of Habicus Group follows SilverDoor’s acquisition of Citybase Apartments, and its Central London Apartments and Orbital Partnership brands, in May 2016.

To coincide with the introduction of Habicus Group, the company has also launched new brand identities for SilverDoor Apartments, Citybase Apartments, Central London Apartments and their new technology suite, Orbital Platforms.

Managing Director Marcus Angell commented: “We have been operating as a group of companies since last May and in that time it became apparent that we need a parent company to be able to refer to all of our brands as a whole.

“Habicus Group brings all of our offerings together in to one place. We spent a long time making sure we got our brands just right and I’m delighted with the results. I’m confident that we are now in the perfect position to continue our growth and expand further internationally.”

As well as a new look, Central London Apartments has repositioned its offering by featuring a refined portfolio of luxury serviced apartments supported by personable account management service.

Citybase Apartments guests will now enjoy a faster, more intuitive website, with enhanced user experience and greater online availability.

SilverDoor Apartments remains exclusively corporate focused and has a revamped identity that echoes its position as the most trusted provider of serviced apartments for business travel.

The serviced apartment network, Orbital Partnership, has also been overhauled as part of Orbital Platforms. Membership is exclusively by invitation only and allows partners to enhance their service by booking apartments for their clients in locations they aren’t able to fulfil themselves.

Elsewhere, the group is launching a powerful new self-booking tool for their corporate focused SilverDoor Apartments brand. Orbi will enable corporate clients to manage their serviced apartment requirements online and receive intelligent insights through bespoke management information. The tool will make it easier than ever for travel managers to incorporate serviced apartments in to their travel programmes.

The SilverDoor content management system has been relaunched as Orbital One and allows property operators to connect with all Habicus Group brands in one place and receive bookings from their extensive corporate and private client base.

Finally, Orbtial API helps third parties connect with all Habicus Group property data, rates and availability to allow smooth integration of services.

The Orbital Platforms technology is being rolled out throughout 2018 with more information to follow.

Click here for a video about the Habicus Group rebrand project.

 

Imago Venues struck gold last week with two wins on Thursday night at the prestigious Leicestershire Promotions 2017 Tourism and Hospitality Awards.

The first win of the night was for Holywell Park in the Proud of Our People: Best Team award, which recognised the venue’s dedication to clients, their outstanding customer feedback and ongoing desire to deliver to the highest possible customer service levels.

The second win was for Great Places to Stay: Most Innovative Business Tourism Partner, which reflected Imago Venues’ ongoing desire to seek new ways to meet client needs, react to a changing market place and above all connect and build trust with clients, suppliers and stakeholders.

Emma Boynton, Imago Venues’ head of sales and marketing commented: “Our business has always been about our people. We’re all about bringing people together and providing the right environment for communication and learning to flourish, all whilst delivering the highest levels of customer service.  We’re more than facilitators of a product; we create inspiring and outstanding experiences for our customers. Our vision is to be their preferred choice through consistent service excellence.  These wins reflect that ongoing desire and we are delighted to have been recognised at such a prestigious event against very stiff competition.  These awards are a reflection of the dedication shown by our people and I want to thank them all for the hard work that secured these wins.”

Imago Venues brings together Loughborough University’s conference and events venues under one brand.  They provide high quality meeting spaces, venues and accommodation along with world leading sports and leisure facilities.

For more information visit www.welcometoimago.com or call 01509 633030.

 

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