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AC Forum chooses London for 2010 annual general assembly

Report – Frankfurt – IMEX 2009: In its ongoing campaign to attract international Associations to hold events in London, Visit London at IMEX announced that the Associations Conference Forum (AC Forum) has chosen the capital city to host their 2010 annual general assembly. The AC Forum is Europe’s only networking platform established exclusively for and by associations with in-house congress staff.

With 23 members, the Association represents some of Europe’s leading medical associations including European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD); European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO); European Society for Cardiology (ESC); European Society of Radiology (ESR); International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP); European CanCer Organisation (ECCO) and World Dental Federation (FDI).

Commenting on the choice of London, Luc Hendrickx, President of AC Forum said: “The Associations Conference Forum meets in January every year in a different European city. For 2010, we selected London as the venue for the General Assembly and an intense two-day working meeting. As one of the positive effects of London hosting of the 2012 Olympics, AC Forum members are keen to learn how the congress and events industry can benefit from the Games."

The announcement – along with the hosting of GASTRO 2009, one of the largest medical conferences to come to London – further establishes the capital city as one of the world’s leading destinations for association conferences and large meetings.

Becky Graveney, Visit London’s Associations Sales Manager said: “The AC Forum gives us a wonderful opportunity to showcase all that London has to offer, particularly at times when new developments are coming to fruition such as ExCeL’s continued expansion with a 5,000 seater auditorium and a new 1,000 bed city hotel – Westminster Bridge Park Plaza.”

Graveney continued: “With such a favourable exchange rate against the Euro and so much buzz around the city fuelled by the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games, there has never been a better time for the European Associations market to consider London as a first choice to hold conferences and large events. London has the perfect location, from purpose-built conference centres seating up to 20,000 people to prestigious academic venues, museums, palaces, theatres and many more. With over 100,000 bedrooms ranging from university accommodation to 5-star hotels, London offers conference accommodation options to suit any budget.”

As part of their ongoing support for the associations sector Visit London will be offering visitors at IMEX the chance to meet some of the key large event spaces including ExCeL London, Barbican, Novotel London West and Wembley Stadium. The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre and Central Hall Westminster will also highlight their new partnership, which sees the two venues working together to offer a combined events space. The partnership will be launched to the industry with a new campaign entitled ‘Next Door’.

Additionally, the Visit London Associations team has produced a dedicated Associations toolkit which will aid association staff on all aspects of organising a conference from the bid process and presentation though to conference marketing and social programmes. Additionally, a London Accomodation Charter has been created and designed to simplify the process of sourcing London hotel rooms for events that require 1,000 rooms or more.

The organisation also produces a regular newsletter, enabling Associations to keep up-to-date with London’s latest offers, news venues and relevant news.

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