Covid-induced, technology-enabled innovations reshaping future of business conferences and events

TD Editor

Like many parts of the hospitality and travel industry, the events sector is discovering new and more effective ways of doing business directly as a result of its response to the pandemic. Covid-induced travel restrictions forced a shift to online events and hybrid formats, blending virtual and physical elements.

But now event companies, such as leading Asian operator Riviera, are recognising that these new formats and technologies are creating better, more interactive events and are likely to become a permanent feature in future.

Benoit C Thebaut, director and co-founder of Riviera, said he expected most conferences would continue to have a virtual component to expand audience reach and engagement, and to enable host companies to reinvest costs saved on transporting speakers into better content. He said this was already happening in China where Riviera is experiencing strong growth on the back of the recovery in the domestic market.

Thebaut was speaking at the announcement of a new partnership between Riviera and The Delivering Group, Asia’s fast-growing platform for technology-driven tourism and hospitality solutions. The two companies have signed a global partnership to jointly leverage their services and client bases, with a focus on Asia Pacific/Greater China markets which are gradually starting to rebound from the pandemic.

For more than 14 years, Riviera has provided top quality event management services to some of the world’s top brands, including Facebook, Netflix, CBRE, CNBC and UBS, as well as leading travel and hospitality brands such as Emirates, Sands China, Marriott International and Capella Hotels and Resorts. The company has a strong presence in mainland China with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, as well as Hong Kong, Macao, Singapore and Bangkok.

The Delivering Group co-founder and director Mark Simmons said that many companies were looking for more effective ways to use events to connect with customers, suppliers and partners in Asia Pacific, Greater China and North America. “Through our partnership with Riviera, we can help them access clients with the latest event solutions for conferences, exhibitions, roadshows and product launches through our offices in Asia Pacific, Greater China and North America.”

Thebaut said he was also excited to partner with The Delivering Group to take advantage of the company’s extensive network of travel, tourism and hospitality connections throughout the regions.

The alliance with Riviera is the latest move by The Delivering Group to form a powerful coalition of sales, marketing, PR, digital, distribution solutions providers targeting the travel and hospitality sector. In the last six months, the group has signed agreements with AI chat specialist HiJiffy, technology consultancy CUBE, tailor-made online booking experts Book Tech and hotel management companies, Absolute Hotel Services and Valor Hospitality Partners.

Simmons, who co-founded The Delivering Group with experienced industry leaders Joe Cauchi and Mike Yates, said many hospitality and tourism companies have been struggling with the challenge of sourcing the right partners for their business when there were so many different suppliers and platforms to choose from.

“Now we have an experienced, friendly, affordable and highly efficient one-stop shop for management companies, owners and developers to connect with the leading players in everything from contract and revenue management to sales and marketing, events, representation, AI solutions, digital marketing and customer engagement – The Delivering Group and our Affiliate Partners.”
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