The Asia Pacific Incentives and Meetings Event (AIME) has today announced that the 2024 event will be the biggest AIME in a decade.
The event, to be held in February in Australia at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, will host more than 600 buyers from around the world, welcome 3500 visitor buyers and 570 exhibitors from various business events sectors.
This represents phenomenal growth of 63 per cent on the number of exhibitors at AIME 2023 – and cements AIME’s position as the premier event for the international business events community in the region.
International destinations attending AIME for the first time since the Covid pandemic include Fiji, Korea, Macau, USA, Canada, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, India, Maldives, Italy, Malta, Norway, Monaco and UK/Ireland.
They join countries including Japan, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and Africa returning again to the AIME showfloor.
In total, 33 countries will be represented at AIME in 2024.
AIME event director Silke Calder says the phenomenal growth of AIME 2024 cements its position as one of the premier events on the global business events calendar.
“Off the back of our incredible 30th anniversary AIME in 2023, this year we return even bigger and better than ever. We are excited to welcome the business events community back to Melbourne and are thrilled with the incredible support we’ve received from international destinations along with Australia’s convention bureaus – every state in Australia will be represented at AIME next month,” she says.
“More than 600 Hosted Buyers will attend AIME 2024, which is an amazing growth of 51% on 2023. We will host buyers from Australia, New Zealand, South-East Asia, North Asia, India, USA, Canada, Europe and UK.
“It sets the scene for a truly amazing 31st AIME.”
Calder says the team is thrilled to announce an official AIME podcast will launch in 2024. Episodes will be recorded live at AIME 2024 in collaboration with AIME’s podcast production partner, Connected Event Group, in its podcast studio on the show floor.
“The podcast aims to take listeners behind the scenes of the dynamic and ever-evolving world of events. Join us as we delve into the latest trends, share expert insights, and explore innovative approaches shaping the future of the industry,” she says.
For the first time at AIME, in 2024 there will be a dedicated zone for the world’s boutique experience makers. The Boutique will showcase more than 20 operators offering bespoke and highly customisable experiences.
Another new zone for 2024, the DMC Network will bring together Destination Management Companies from all over the world.
The hotel zone continues to grow in popularity – testament to the post-Covid bounce back of travel – and in 2024 occupies a footprint that is 50 per cent larger than AIME 2023.
Other showfloor features and activations include the Accor Hosted Buyer Lounge, the Ideas Academy presented by Spice and four new interactive breakout spaces to recharge attendees.
Kicking off the three-day event on Monday 19 February, AIME’s Knowledge Program is themed “The 4Ps of GLOCALISATION”, with two keynote speakers: award-winning marketing executive Lisa Ronson and bestselling author, TV host and founder of the 100 Things movement Sebastian Terry.
Curated by El Kwang and BEAM with the support of an Advisory Committee consisting of eight industry leaders from the APAC region, the program draws inspiration from the AIME global community’s wish of harmonising the symbiotic relationship between global insights with local nuances.
The Knowledge Program will commence with a networking lunch presented by the future Nyaal Banyul Geelong Convention and Event Centre.
As always, the hugely anticipated AIME Welcome Event will be another highlight of the three-day show. This exclusive evening is open to Hosted Buyers, Exhibitors, Media Partners, and VIPs. Visitor Buyers can elevate their experience by upgrading their ticket. More details on the not-to-be-missed Welcome Event will be announced soon.
Melbourne Convention Bureau CEO Julia Swanson says she is proud of MCB’s involvement as a key player in the growth of the business events industry through AIME.
“For close to a third of a century, as owners of AIME, Melbourne Convention Bureau has been bringing the business events industry together, building connections and sharing knowledge at AIME, right here in Australia’s events capital, Melbourne,” she says.
“Just like the Australian Open is the first tennis Grand Slam of the year, AIME is the first international trade show of the business events sector. And we are delighted to kick start the international calendar for 2024.”
AIME 2024 will run 19 – 21 February, 2024 at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.