World Cup success – a true reflection of Germany’s conference and events offering for the sports industry

Fanhansa ©Lufthansa Group
Fanhansa ©Lufthansa Group
This summer Mario Götze ended the Germans’ 24-year wait to bring home a 4th FIFA World Cup, shooting a nail-biting goal that delivered a 1-0 win over Argentina, and unleashing a frenzy of celebration in Germany and around the world. The German team even travelled back home on a specially branded “Fanhansa” Lufthansa airplane to be cheered on by roughly 400,000 waiting fans in front of Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate.
Though this latest victory will certainly drive excitement for football-inspired meetings, for Germany, serving the sports & fitness industries through conferences and events is nothing new. Here are just a few examples of how Germany plays ball in the sports meeting world:

• In 2006, Germany played host to the FIFA World Cup with over 21M fans engaging in business and leisure activities across 12 German host cities from Hamburg, Leipzig and Stuttgart, to Munich, Frankfurt, Nuremberg, Hanover and others.

• Berlin, in addition to being one of these Word Cup host cities in 2006, also regularly provides a hot spot for sporting conferences, including for example, the MINEPS V World Sports Ministers Conference in 2013 and the Strategic Forum of the International Paralympic Committee due this autumn.

• Cycling enthusiasts stream to Friedrichshafen, close to both the Swiss and Austrian borders, each year to attend the Eurobike tradeshow. The 22nd edition of the show in 2013 attracted over 45,000 people from 111 countries.

• The finance-forward city of Frankfurt plays host to the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge® every year. This year’s race just took place in June 2014 with 71,735 entrants representing 2,781 companies, making it one of the world’s largest road races. 

• Each April the world’s leading show for Fitness, Wellness and Health -- FIBO-- is held in Cologne bringing together over 700 exhibitors with 97,000 visitors.
If you’re interested in hosting a sport conference (or any other type of event) in Germany please head to


BBC World poll: Germany - the most positively viewed country worldwide

 ©DZT / Merten, Hans Peter
©DZT / Merten, Hans Peter
Germany has retained its position as the most positively viewed country, with 60 per cent people worldwide giving it positive ratings, according to a poll by BBC World. The Country Ratings Poll of 24 nations surveyed 24,542 people around the world between December 2013 and April 2014.
On average, in the 20 tracking countries surveyed both in 2013 and 2014, 60 per cent of people rate Germany positively.

The survey offers an interesting overview of how other countries view Germany, with Brits proving to be the biggest fans. The most positive ratings are found in the UK with 86 per cent of positive ratings – up 8 points and the highest proportion in the survey alongside Australia. With 83 per cent of positive ratings, neighbouring France is the second most favourable country towards Germany’s influence. In peripheral Europe, a solid and stable majority of Russians (57%) hold favourable perceptions of Germany, while a stable plurality in Turkey does too (47%).

In North America, attitudes towards Germany’s influence in the world are very positive, with 73 per cent of favourable views held among American respondents and a growing majority of 77 per cent in Canada (up 8 points).

In the African countries surveyed, favourable perceptions also continue to prevail, though more moderately this year in Ghana and Nigeria. Positive views have increased an average of 13 per cent among Brazilians (up to 66%) and Brazil is now the 14 most favourable towards Germany in the region.

In Australia and Asia, the most favourable views towards Germany are found among the OECD countries. With 86 per cent of the public leaning positively (up 10 points), Australia is the best supporter of Germany (equally with the UK), closely followed by South Korea (84%, up 8 points). Although one in two in Japan is unable to take a side, a very strong plurality of Japanese holds positive feelings (46%) and the country has the lowest proportion of negative ratings (3%).

Read the full article here


Meet Germany in London!

One-day Destination Workshop: 3rd September 2014

B2B Destination Showcase
B2B Destination Showcase
The GCB German Convention Bureau is delighted to announce its participation at the Moulden Marketing B2B Destination Workshop, taking place on 3rd September 2014 at the Radisson Blu Hotel in London’s Portman Square.
UK meeting and event planners can learn more about exciting destinations, meet Convention Bureaus, hotels, DMCs as well as other suppliers from Germany and across the world in pre-set appointments. The format allows you to attend AM or PM sessions, or mid AM to mid PM. 

Why not seize the opportunity to expand your destination and venue knowledge and connect with up to 50 suppliers from over 20 countries?

Register today to meet the GCB as well as other German suppliers in pre-set appointments:

Dresden Convention Bureau  & Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski Dresden
LEIPZIG & Congress Center Leipzig
Maritim Hotels
Radisson Blu Hotel, Berlin & MR Congress & Incentive GmbH

We look forward to seeing you in September! 

Contact GCB: Ursula Winterbauer, Phone +49 69 24293012


Düsseldorf – international hub for conventions and business events with a future

The convention and business event hub Düsseldorf is excellently positioned for the future. The capital of North Rhine-Westphalia boasts excellent accessibility, a dynamic economic climate, and a first-class infrastructure. In addition, the venue providers are constantly expanding their factors of success, such as sustainability standards, technical equipment, industry expertise and marketing strategies, reacting to the critical "future challenges" in the industry to ensure continuous dynamic growth.

Convention hub Düsseldorf: consistent growth

Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event and CCD Congress Center Düsseldorf have been growing consistently for several years – in terms of quantity and quality. That is to say, the dimensions of event inquiries (number of participants, additional space for parallel exhibitions, international reach) have been increasing consistently. An example from the healthcare industry: in 2011, Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event hosted 8 conventions with 13,500 visitors and by 2013 those figures had risen to 12 conventions with 27,000 visitors. In 2014, approximately 38,000 visitors are expected to attend 13 conventions here, and in 2015 about 16 medical conventions are expected to draw about 44,000 people to Düsseldorf.

Such figures underscore the results of the well-respected annual "German Meeting & Event Barometer"*, which finds that North Rhine-Westphalia with the center in Düsseldorf has consistently remained the favorite German state among German event hosts and the second favorite German state among international event hosts. "Conventions are an important economic factor in North Rhine-Westphalia – and especially in the capital city," says Düsseldorf's Mayor Dirk Elbers. "The consistently increasing number of large events and our regular strong ranking in industry surveys indicates that we have chosen the right path."

Düsseldorf is also an attractive destination for business events. As a dynamic economic center in North Rhine-Westphalia, the capital city is a popular place to hold corporate events – ranging from smaller meetings and seminars to product presentations and general assembly meetings. For example, in 2013 Daimler AG held an international training event spanning several weeks focusing on the launch of the new Sprinter series, attracting 6,000 participants from 26 countries worldwide. In HV Magazine's ranking of favorite venues for general assembly meetings, Düsseldorf is regularly among the top. 

Excellent accessibility, superb convention infrastructure

There are many reasons for this success. Mayor Elbers pinpoints one of the most important reasons: "Düsseldorf has a convention infrastructure of international quality. That doesn't only mean excellent travel accessibility, but also superb convention capacities." Düsseldorf's airport, the third largest in Germany, is constantly expanding its flight network, and the city itself is embedded in an extensive highway system and very easy to reach by high-speed train. The Rhine metropolis has extensive hospitality services, with over 11,000 rooms in the 3 – 5-star segment in Düsseldorf proper and a wide range of well-known hospitality providers. In addition there are meeting rooms and convention halls of every size, creative event agents and a wide range of special event venues for pre- and post-event programming.

At the center of the international convention business stands CCD Congress Center Düsseldorf, which regularly receives awards. Together with the halls of the Düsseldorf Fairgrounds, the building complex offers a flexible room concept for up to 15,000 visitors. Combined with additional halls of the Düsseldorf Fairgrounds and the ESPRIT arena, located on the same grounds, the total capacity exceeds 100,000 visitors. Hilmar Guckert, CEO of Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event: "CCD Congress Center Düsseldorf is the heart of the convention city of Düsseldorf. The great number of events held here and the know-how and the extensive experience of its staff underscore the role of capital city in the international meeting and event industry.“

In addition to classical meeting and convention center, Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event also offers business event planers a broad range of special event venues, multi-functional arenas and unusual incentive ideas. For very large business events, the HORISUM platform is available, a combination of ESPRIT arena, the halls of the Düsseldorf Fairgrounds and/or CCD Congress Center Düsseldorf, which, in combination, is the worlds largest event center.

Dynamic economy, network with key industries

A dynamic economy is especially likely to benefit a meeting and convention city when convention industry policy setters identify the most important industries and areas of competency of their region and actively network with key players in them. As the Meeting and Event Barometer underscores, industry competency is an important factor in choosing a destination. In Düsseldorf, we act on these insights purposefully – as evidenced by the conventions, meetings and corporate events held here. In addition to the healthcare industry mentioned above, a few of the most important areas of competency include chemicals and life sciences, biotechnology and industrial technology/innovation. Düsseldorf also has unusually strong connections to Russia, China and Japan.

Strategies for the future: technological innovation, sustainability, continuing education

In terms of the "future challenges" identified by the meeting industry, Düsseldorf is also in touch with the pulse of time. According to a future study published in 2013 by GCB German Convention Bureau².
The meeting and convention city of Düsseldorf has done its homework in these areas. That is visible in the constant improvements that have been made to the transportation and convention infrastructure and the targeted networking it has undertaken with regional industries. It has kept up-to-date technologically through on-demand streaming and live-streaming services, and regularly receives awards for its dedication to continuing education. CCD Congress Center Düsseldorf is Green Globe certified and has joined the EVVC/GCB sustainability code "fairpflichtet".

Equipped with a wide range of additional marketing strategies

Düsseldorf's success as the meeting and convention city is the result of consistent, targeted work – hosting the 56th Eurovision Song Contest ESC in the ESPRIT arena in 2011 gave us an additional image and visitor boost. As of January 2014, we undertook a fundamental strategic realignment, which is evident in our new name: Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event is the name of the former DüsseldorfCongress Veranstaltungsgesellschaft mbH. Along with our new name, we took on operational responsibility for the ESPRIT arena and sportAgentur Düsseldorf. Our objectives are to better leverage synergies, create a uniform marketing language and increase our venue utilization rates. Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event is an experienced partner for event organizers, not only offering venues, but also networking among and bringing together all key actors.

Our diverse marketing strategy targets future success. To this end, Düsseldorf Congress Sport & Event has entered strategic alliances with GCB and AIPC, is a member of the marketing cooperation "The Seven Centers of Germany", and regularly participates, together with convention bureau DÜSSELDORF, in international industry events such as the leading trade fairs IMEX and EIBTM. It is also active within the framework of the marketing association "KölnDüsseldorf – The Meetropolis" and convention bureau DÜSSELDORF's own meeting barometer (starting in 2014). In a nutshell: excellently positioned for the future.

*On behalf of EVVC (European Association of Event Centers) | the GCB (German Convention Bureau) and German National Tourist Board (GNTB) | hosted by EITW (European Institute of Meetings Industry)

²Future study "Meeting and Convention of the Future", published in 2013 by GCB German Convention Bureau, prepared by IZT – Institute for Future Studies and Technology Assessment, Berlin


Berlin – Popular location for events in science and medicine

Half-year statistics: continuous growth of events and attendee figures

Berlin Convention Office ©Berlin Convention Office
Berlin Convention Office ©Berlin Convention Office
alf-year statistics: continuous growth of events and attendee figures
Berlin, 11 August 2014 Berlin, the successful congress location: according to current statistics*, in the first half of 2014 about 4.75 million people (+2% compared to the same period for the previous year) attended 61,100 congresses, conventions and events (+2%) in the German capital. About 17 % of the events had an international presence (+2%). Berlin has therefore secured its good position on the national and international market as a convention and congress destination.
The German capital has increasingly positioned itself as a location for events in science and medicine. The number of events in the industries “medicine, science and research” increased from 7.1 per cent in the first half of 2013 to 10 per cent in the same period of the current year. Measured by the number of attendees, this field makes up 12 per cent of all events.
“We market Berlin specifically to these industries because the city has a lot of potential with its well-known institutions for medicine and health management,” says Heike Mahmoud, Director of the visitBerlin Berlin Convention Office. This also applies to technologies in the field of IT: “Berlin startups are again and again conquering the world. The city has exactly the right atmosphere for congresses which deal with innovation,” explains Mahmoud.
The Berlin convention and congress market generated 3.2 million overnight (+3%) stays in the first half of the year (2013: 3.1 million). This makes up about one quarter of all hotel overnight stays in the capital.

More information about the congress metropolis Berlin at convention.visitBerlin.com.





4.65 million

4.75 million (+2 %)



61,100 (+2 %)

Overnight stays

3.1 million

3.2 Million (+3 %)

*Source: Congress statistics for the first half of 2014 by the independent market research company ghh consult GmbH, on behalf of visitBerlin.


GCB On the Move in Stunning Stuttgart: Drink in the Historic Spaces and Lovely Wine with Short Trips Outside the City Limits

Part 3 of the 3 Part Blog Series from the 2014 US GCB Educational Tour to Stuttgart

By Jennifer McNeil, Roving GCB “Reporter”

In addition to everything that Stuttgart proper has to offer, meeting and conference goers can also venture just 30 minutes or less outside the city to find more memorable spaces and places. 

Combining the old with the new in a bewitching way, Esslingen am Neckar - just 9 miles southeast of Stuttgart city center - offers the latest in meetings & lodging locations but also takes you back in time. 

NeckarForum is a modern conference venue right in the center of town in Esslingen and features the ultimate in lodging convenience as it’s directly connected to the newly renovated Best Western Premier Hotel Park Consul which offers a hip interior and picturesque views of the beautiful and historic surroundings. 

Esslingen also features Germany’s oldest row of half-timber houses, ancient churches, a charming town hall and an intoxicatingly-historic 13th century wine cellar at sparkling wine maker Kessler.  Above the scenic medieval town also perches the 14th century Esslingen Castle looking down on the sloping vineyards.

In the idyllic Stuttgart suburb of Uhlbach wine-loving delegates can connect at the Weinbaumuseum which celebrates the 2,000 yr+ wine history of this region as started by the Romans.  The museum building itself dates back 400 years and served as the former grape pressing building and it too can be booked as event space.

Finally, in nearby Ludwigsburg (just 7.5 miles from Stuttgart), delegates will feel like royalty at the 18th Century Ludwigsburg Palace.  Within its storied walls many types of meetings & events are hosted and it also features lovely gardens, three museums, and staff members donned in period dress.

For more information on planning your perfect meeting in the Stuttgart area please contact the German Convention Bureau with offices in New York City and Frankfurt, and the Stuttgart Convention Bureau celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. 

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