13th HBAA Annual Forum Programme Announced

Hotel Booking Agents, hotels and venues are set to debate the latest industry topics and trends at this year's HBAA Forum, held 8th - 9th September at the Ramada Manchester Piccadilly Hotel.

The main topics up for discussion are visions for the future and how to prepare for the decade ahead in sales and leadership. Heavyweights in the accommodation, meetings and events sector will assess the UK's progression in the hospitality industry and outline new opportunities through keynote speeches and question & answer sessions.

On day one, Ian Gamse, director responsible for the Otus hotel brand database, will reveal what is in store for the hospitality industry over the next ten years and the possible implications for venues and booking agents. He will be followed by Beverley Alimo-Metcalf of Bradford University who will explain why models of leadership are changing direction and leaving behind the old notion of heroic leadership.

The keynote speaker on day two is Reggie Aggarwal, CEO of Cvent. He will be speaking about entrepreuneurship, intrapreneurship and the future of the meetings industry as well as sharing tips on how to grow a business through a recession.

Over 50 speakers will lead discussions in a packed programme of plenary sessions and workshops, including Zibrant's managing director Fay Sharpe, Marc Danton of Marriott Hotels and Event Assured's Brian Kirsch. Topics will range from the latest Apps for the event sector, security at events, insurance policies and how to recruit, develop and retain talented people to technology challenges and frustrations of distribution, content and pricing.

Juliet Price, Chair of the HBAA, commented: “The panellist line-up and list of topics being delivered this year will appeal to all industry sectors as well being relevant to our marketplace.

"We believe that the subjects tackled at the forum will have a direct impact on those attending, as they focus on issues being faced both now and in the future, making the 2011 HBAA Forum a real ‘must-attend’ event.”

The Forum will also be the backdrop for the association's annual awards, which recognise professionals who have excelled in their field and helped to provide a benchmark for best practice among the booking agents, hotels and venues. Seven categories will be presented: Training and Development, Promoting Excellence within the Industry, Best demonstration of CSR, Agency of the Year (Large, Medium and Small size) and Venue of the Year.

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