There are a very large number of international companies looking to host corporate events around the world annually and, traditionally, event planners have opted for cities within established global economies like the US and Europe.
But with many new and emerging markets and economies around the world, should event planners increasingly look to other, less, traditional locations to host events? These countries offer great locations for corporate events, competitive local rates for venue hire and the chance for delegates to experience something a little different.
Five of the biggest emerging national economies include Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa; or BRICS.
These developing and newly industrialised countries are becoming increasingly popular amongst those event planners who are looking for alternative destinations...
A great alternative corporate event location thanks to its colourful cities and mainly tropical climate. Brazil has one of the fastest growing major economies and is increasingly becoming popular for event planners looking for exciting locations to host corporate events. São Paulo - Brazil's biggest city - is one of the country's most popular locations for business tourism.
In fact, more than 90,000 events are held here each year! With the 2014 world cup being held next year in Brazil, as well as the 2016 Olympics, the country is really geared up to offer great venues and services to the events industry, with plenty of local DMCs offering their services in helping to make your corporate event a success.
The biggest draw for event planners and businesses is Brazil's unique cultural integrity and its beautiful scenery, it is also a viable business-related destination thanks to its transport links and impressive list of diverse venues. Event planners who want to offer their delegates the complete cultural experience can include some authentic Brazilian entertainment within their itinerary, including; Latin dancers, samba bands, Capoeira performers and carnival themed shows!
As the largest country in the world, Russia offers an exciting and creative destination for corporate events. The three largest cities - Moscow, St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk - are as diverse as they are stunning, and have a plethora of modern and historical venues for corporate events. How about hosting your next convention in the fairytale city of St Petersburg with its winding canals and abundance of palaces? Or perhaps the capital Moscow is more your thing, with its many cathedrals and impressive Kremlin offering a beautiful backdrop to any meeting.
Novosibirsk is also an attractive and practical alternative setting for upcoming events. It has great links with both Asia and Europe, and plenty of good quality hotels that are ideal venues for corporate events, including many well known international chains. For event planners that are unsure of the area, there are established DMCs within Russia who are able to assist in planning a corporate event. When it comes to corporate entertainment, planners might like to add a local cultural element to the event, to offer the full experience for guests.
Authentic Russian entertainment options include Cossack Dancers, traditional musicians and folk shows and a destination entertainment specialist will assist in sourcing local entertainment options which are not only cost effective, but also authentic.
An exotic and culturally diverse country, India offers a corporate event location that is like no other in the world! A newly industrialised country, India offers bustling and historical cities, as well as the quiet beauty of the countryside. Mumbai is the most populous city within India - followed by Delhi and Bangalore - and is the financial capital of the country.
Mumbai, also known as Bombay, is already an established location for events (including exhibitions, seminars and conferences) and so has an impressive array of facilities and stunning venues for those looking to hold a corporate event there.
India's major cities have great links with all the world's top business locations, making it an easy location to access. Add to that a warm climate and competitive prices, and it is a attractive country in which to hold events. Whilst in India, delegates could enjoy a local elephant ride or watch the sunrise at the Taj Mahal. There is also plenty of local, authentic entertainment for a range of corporate events that want to offer plenty of rich cultural experiences for delegates; including traditional musicians, Bollywood style shows and Indian dancers.
With a rich history stretching back five millennia, China is one of the oldest continuous civilisations that makes it an ideal location for event planners wanting to offer a historical setting for their next event. Beijing is at the very heart of China, and is renowned for its abundance of temples, opulent palaces and beautiful architecture that make it a real centre of culture. Event planners can let their imaginations run wild when it comes to venues and itineraries for corporate events within China. How about a meal on a section of the Great Wall of China, or a corporate gala event within the Forbidden City?
Shanghai is also renowned for its famous historical landmarks, as well as its growing skyline that is testament to its growing economy and prosperity as a city. This 'Oriental Paris' has plenty to offer corporate delegates in the way of sites of interest and shopping experiences! There is also traditional and authentic corporate entertainment aplenty for events, including local musicians to Chinese dancers, and Chinese acrobats to Shaolin Warriors.
South Africa is synonymous with safaris, and this is just one of the experiences that corporate delegates could enjoy whilst visiting for an event! Event planners can opt for city based events in South Africa, or an event inspired by the natural beauty that South Africa is famed for. With 11 official languages spoken in South Africa this is country with a rich cultural heritage, making it an attractive alternative location for events.
South Africa also boasts diverse natural habitats (where else could you have a meeting and then watch lions in the wild!) and a temperate climate, as well as beautiful conferencing facilities (from meeting facilities in the wine lands to convention venues with breathtaking sea views).
There are plenty of large cities offering the venues and services that event planners would expect from an established corporate event location, including Cape Town; the second largest city in South Africa which is famed for landmarks like Table Mountain and its huge harbour, as well as being a World Heritage Site thanks to its biodiversity. Corporate delegates can enjoy plenty of local, traditional entertainment whilst in South Africa from African Acrobat Shows to cultural dance groups.
Reacting to the rise in international corporate events the five BRICS members, along with other emerging economies, now offer many great event facilities and locations for event planners with the added bonus of competitive prices and cultural experiences.
The five BRICS countries, and those looking to become members in the near future (Turkey and Indonesia), are real alternative locations for those looking to plan a corporate event that offers something out-of-the-ordinary for delegates.
When planning an international corporate event, whether in an established or emerging market, it is always worthwhile using a DMC to assist with sourcing local venues and recommending services. A destination entertainment specialist can also help with supplying any local entertainment needs.
This is a guest post by Amy Capron. She is currenty media manager for Scarlett Entertainment, the destination entertainment specialists. Amy is passionate about events and you can keep up to date on the latest event and entertainment trends by following her on twitter. Submit your guest post here.