Dubai won a record 349 business event bids in 2023, reflecting a 49 per cent increase in successful bids compared to 2022.
Driven by Dubai Business Events (DBE), events captured in 2023 are set to attract over 191,000 international delegates. Events for the coming years have also been confirmed to as far as 2029.
Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment, said that the city’s business events sector will continue to “play a vital role in wider tourism and economic development, in line with the priorities of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33″.
“To keep the momentum going, we have charted ambitious plans for the year ahead and are working closely with all stakeholders – from hotels and event organisers to attractions and venues – to attract the biggest and most prestigious events and congresses to the city and raise the profile of Dubai as a year-round global business events destination. Throughout 2024, the DBE team and partners will engage with meetings professionals and potential clients around the world, further elevating the city’s positioning and competitiveness.”
Some of the most noteworthy successful bids in 2023 are association events such as Critical Communications World 2024 with 3,800 delegates; the WCA Worldwide Annual Conference 2024 with 4,500 delegates; the International Trademark Association’s Annual Meeting 2026 with 10,000 delegates; and the Million Dollar Round Table Global Conference 2024, with 10,000 delegates. This is in addition to an line-up of corporate and incentive events coming the city, including TOKEN2049 and Nuskin Elite, both taking place this year with 4,000 and 1,000 delegates respectively; as well as Amway ESAN 2025, which is expected to bring 3,500 visitors to Dubai.
In addition to working with various service providers, DBE leveraged its role as one of the co-founders of the Dubai Association Centre (DAC) to support its mission to build relationships with international associations and attract them to Dubai, with 60 per cent of delegates set to come to Dubai as a result of bid wins visiting for association conferences and congresses.
DBE has already kicked off its year-round calendar of industry engagements, with a series of sales missions in target markets and participation in major tradeshows, including IMEX Frankfurt, IMEX America, and IBTM World. DBE also is working closely with industry stakeholders to host meeting planners in Dubai for a series of study missions that will allow them to experience Dubai’s business events and tourism infrastructure and its rapidly growing knowledge economy.