by Matt Alderton | February 15, 2013
Acknowledging the growth of the international association meetings market in Africa, the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) has opened a new African regional office, it announced this week.

“The opening of the new regional offices in Africa isn’t simply a move to deliver better services to our existing members in this region, but a recognition that the international association meetings market is continuing to evolve, and it is in the growth of regional meetings that we anticipate some of the most dramatic future developments,” says ICCA President Arnaldo Nardone. “This trend is already well established in Asia and Latin America and the recent establishment of an African society for association executives shows that Africa is starting to move down the same road. What this implies is that there is going to be more business for our existing members in these regions, more new events to identify and add to the ICCA Association Database, more new infrastructure developments, more understanding of the strategic importance of association events by city and national governments, and more interest in ICCA by potential new members. It is strategically important for ICCA to build a long-term presence in the African market.”

Based in South Africa, ICCA’s Africa office will be led by ICCA Regional Director Chris Prieto, who also serves as special events and VIP liaison manager at Emperors Palace Hotel Casino Convention Resort in Johannesburg.

“My top priority is to make sure that every member in Africa knows that they’ve now got a friendly African point of contact to help them get the maximum value out of their ICCA membership, to make them aware of how to use the ICCA network, the database and the full range of ICCA services,” Pietro says.

ICCA now has five regional offices — in Asia-Pacific, North America, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa — in addition to its headquarters in Amsterdam.

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