EICC set for record sales and profits in 2019

From left: EICC top brass Marion McKean, Marshall Dallas, Amanda Wrathall and Les Florence. Picture: Stewart Attwood.
From left: EICC top brass Marion McKean, Marshall Dallas, Amanda Wrathall and Les Florence. Picture: Stewart Attwood.
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The Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) is on track for achieving record sales and operating profits in 2019 after hosting a string of high-profile conferences – and says it is targeting the areas of sustainability, business development and education.

The venue – which bills itself as Scotland’s top conference centre – said that as it approaches the end of the year, its economic impact is expected to exceed £55 million while supporting around 1,800 jobs. It is also on track to host its highest-ever number of events in 2019, closing in on 220.

Chief executive Marshall Dallas acknowledged the contribution of the Edinburgh business community to its performance.

“While more than ever in 2019, in the face of widespread business and political uncertainties and increasing international competition, the EICC has had to be commercially astute, it’s also part of our raison d’être to support local businesses across the city. This is a really important factor to us because we would not be as successful a conference centre without the network of city partners who add significant value to our overall proposition.”

The centre also said hosting TEDSummit was among its operating highlights in 2019.

Dallas added: “The benefits of hosting TEDSummit this year go beyond tourism, positioning Edinburgh and Scotland on the world stage as a place to meet and to be inspired.

Shared values

“Our vision, ‘to create an environment which inspires ideas that change the world’, is closely aligned to TED’s own vision of ‘Ideas Worth Spreading’, and it was these shared values, together with the collaborative spirit of our city partners which made a strong case for Edinburgh to host TEDSummit.”

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It was announced in October that the EICC had formed a partnership with Edinburgh BioQuarter, aimed at bringing more UK and global medicine and life sciences conferences to the Scottish capital while helping to build Edinburgh BioQuarter’s pipeline of innovative companies and expertise.

Edinburgh BioQuarter’s Anna Stamp said at the time: “We view this partnership as a shop window to the city which will help us to position ourselves on the world stage, because we think we have a global proposition in life sciences and healthcare.”

Looking ahead to 2020, the EICC intends to announce various initiatives.

Dallas said: “As we move into a new decade, and our 25th year of operating, we look forward to setting out a number of fresh ambitions.

“The three areas under active consideration are sustainability, business development and education, areas we know will strengthen our position in the global events industry, and we hope to make a number of related announcements in early 2020.”

The centre also highlighted its work for good causes, for example last month, on World Kindness Day, it opened a large-scale food collection point, resulting in the collection of 169 kilograms of food items, which equates to 50-plus meals.

The EICC opened in September 1995, since welcoming more than 1.4 million delegates from more than 120 countries generating around £660m of economic impact for the city region.