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HITEC 2010

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Arabian Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC) attracts over
600 hotel industry professionals from 42 countries

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AHIC 2010
United Arab Emirates, 2 May 2010 – AHIC 2010 is being attended this year by over 600 industry professionals from 42 countries, and has enjoyed a significant increase in participants from the hotel investment sector.
 
One of the highlights of the day was the Leaders’ Panel, which look at how industry CEO’s are protecting and growing their businesses, and where and how they are unlocking investment opportunities in the region. The participants included:
 
Eric Danziger, President & CEO, Wyndham Hotel Group
Kurt Ritter, President & CEO, The Rezidor Hotel Group
Gerald Lawless, Executive Chairman, Jumeirah Group
Pierre Frédéric Roulot, President, Golden Tulip Hospitality & Louvre Hotels
Sarmad Zok, Chief Executive Officer, Kingdom Hotel Investments
 
Mark Wynne-Smith, CEO Europe, Middle East & Africa, Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, who moderated the panel, commented: “One of the key themes that was discussed was the expected increase in investments in the budget and mid-level hotel sectors in the region. This diversification in the market will help protect against fluctuations in price and occupancy levels caused by the impact of broader economic factors and is an important step as the regional market continues to mature."


  • Event opened yesterday and will continue through to tomorrow, with attendees enjoying increased opportunities to network with industry leaders
  • The attendance has increased since 2009, with a wider global spread of participants
  • The focus is on ‘Unlocking Investment Opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa’, through an interactive programme that includes panels, breakfast briefings and breakout sessions
 
These themes were reiterated, and expanded upon, in the panel focusing on ‘Successfully Tapping into the Regional Arab Travel Market’, which looked at gaps in the market for new supply. Participants included:
 
HE Sheikh Mubarak Abdulla Al Mubarak Al Sabah, Chairman, Action Hotels
HE Saif Mohamed Al Hajeri, Chairman, Abu Dhabi National Hotels
Selim El Zyr, President & CEO, Rotana
Moderated by: Alex Kyriakidis, Global Managing Partner – Tourism Hospitality & Leisure, Deloitte
 
Jonathan Worsley, Chairman of Bench Events which co-organises AHIC, commented: “I am delighted at the increased turnout this year, and particularly the constantly growing participation by investors in the sector, as well by attendees from the MENA region. The quality and quantity of the debates that have been held by the participants so far has been extremely high, and it is proving to be great opportunity to facilitate networking and deal-making prospects.”

Selected Programme Highlights For Monday 3rd May:
 
The Country Forum
What you need to know to invest intelligently in Oman, Saudi Arabia and Morocco, by listening to those shaping the direction of tourism and hotel investment.
 
Moderator:
John Defterios, Host, CNN Marketplace Middle East
 
Panellists:
HE Yassir Zenagui, Minister of Tourism and Handicraft Kingdom of Morocco
HE Dr Rajiha Abdul Ameer Ali, Minister of Tourism Sultanate of Oman
Dr Salah K AlBukkayet, Vice President, Investment, Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities
 
2010 AHIC Leadership Award Winner
The Award will be presented to Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon al Nahyan, Chairman of TDIC and Chairman, Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Department of Civil Aviation, Chairman of Dubai Airports and Chairman and CEO of Emirates Airlines, followed by a conversation with John Defterios, Host of CNN Marketplace Middle East.

For more information please contact:
Alisdair Haythornthwaite            +971 56 690 1725 / ahaythornthwaite@bell-pottinger.co.uk
Rosemary Youssef                     +971 50 354 8805 / ryoussef@bell-pottinger.co.uk


Platinum sponsors: Ministry of Tourism Brazil, The Rezidor Hotel Group and Wyndham Worldwide. 
 
Emerald sponsors: The Address Hotels and Resorts, Hilton Worldwide, IHG, Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, Jumeirah Group, Moroccan Tourism Development Agency (SMIT)
 
Gold sponsors: Accor Hospitality, Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas, , Bell Pottinger, Corinthia Hotels, Expedia, Golden Tulip Hotels & Resorts, Hamilton Hotel Partners, Hodema Consulting Services, Horwath HTL, Kempinski Hotels & Shaza Hotels, Langham Hotels International, Molinaro Koger, Orient-Express, Rotana, Schletterer Wellness and SPA design, Siemens, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, TRI Hospitality Consulting, Viceroy Hotel Group, WATG.

About Bench Events
Bench Events has a long track record of hosting the premier hotel investment events in the world.  Bench Events’ Chairman, Jonathan Worsley, is one of the organisers and founders of the highly successful International Hotel Investment Forum now in its thirteenth year (www.berlinconference.com).  In 2005, he was responsible for launching the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference in Dubai and in 2008 launched the Russia & CIS Hotel Investment Conference which was a sell out success (www.russia-cisconference.com). Bench Event’s sister company, JW Bench, is a benchmarking company that has successfully launched the Conference Bench and the Productivity Bench. An industry first, the Conference Bench, measures performance data for conference and banqueting space in hotels in Stockholm, Oslo, London, Brussels with other capital cities contributing shortly. www.benchevents.com

About MEED
For 50 years business leaders have been relying on MEED (Middle East Economic Digest) to give them a wealth of factual, unbiased business information that they need to be successful. The MEED brand represents an unrivalled portfolio of high calibre business information products, online services and premier networking events.

MEED Conferences is part of the leading information brand in the Middle East working to provide delegates with the very latest business sensitive information. Over the past 12 years, MEED Conferences has organised events attended by senior government officials and thousands of international business people. The conference series is aimed at companies actively seeking business in the markets of the Middle East. MEED is well established as the source of strategic and accurate regional information placing it in a unique position to bring together high-calibre speakers. www.meed.com


 
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For more information please contact:

Alisdair Haythornthwaite
+971 56 690 1725
ahaythornthwaite@bell-pottinger.co.uk

Rosemary Youssef
+971 50 354 8805
ryoussef@bell-pottinger.co.uk

www.arabianconference.com/programme

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