Business Events Victoria (BEV) is one organisation that is far from slowing down as we lead into the silly season. On Thursday 3 December BEV held the inaugural member’s lunch with special guest, Minister for Tourism and Major Events, The Hon. John Eren MP.

Minister Eren joined more than 35 members including representatives and CEOs from the various Regional Tourism Boards, Venue General Managers and Local Government representatives in a discussion about the opportunities for the growth of Business Events in regional Victoria.

The Minister spoke about the state government’s strong focus for increasing visitation and business in regional Victoria and the importance of the business events sector aiming to continue dispersal across the state and not just focus on the Melbourne CBD.

An update from BEV Executive Officer, Chris Porter, provided an overview of the activity and achievements for 2015 plus he also shared the extensive plan for 2016 which features raising awareness of the network through social media and providing increased opportunities to members.

‘BEV is a unique asset for Victoria, we are the only state in Australia that has state-wide collaboration of regional venues and destinations,’ said Mr Porter, ‘this collaboration provides a competitive advantage over other like destinations as we have a full time Sales Executive who can assist domestic business event organisers. This dedicated resource increases the chances of securing business events for regional Victoria.’

The response for the lunch was pleasing as the inaugural event and attendees made use of the opportunity to network with other venue and regional representatives.

BEV Chairman Brendan Maher stated ‘It has been a concerted effort of the organisation over the last 12 months to engage with our members and elevate the conversation to gain a better understanding of the needs of business events operators across the state. BEV is committed to continuing these conversations for the betterment of the business events industry in regional Victoria.’

Business Events Victoria certainly won’t be slowing down, off the back of an extremely successful 2015 which included a Silver RACV Tourism Award win in 2016 the organisation will be attending various tradeshows, hosting the Regional Victoria Showcase for the second year in late May, delivering an extensive familiarisation program and providing other member opportunities.