The focus of Messe Berlin while putting up the debut ITB China was to provide a qualitative B2B show to the huge Chinese market, said ITB China general manager David Axiotis.
Speaking with TTN on the sidelines of the show, a beaming Axiotis said the first show is always special. “There were many challenges on the way. It’s a kind of a relief to see that the product is well accepted by the market.
“Our focus was to put up a qualitative show, not making a big show for the sake of being big. So, we chose this small, powerful format.”
Explaining the reasons behind organising ITB China while already running a successful ITB Asia, Axiotis said: “ITB Asia has been very successfully established as the marketplace covering the whole of Asia- Pacific region. But China is so big and developing so fast that it is only possible to cover that marketplace when you do a show in China itself. China is a world on its own.”
He admitted that there will be Chinese buyers going to Singapore for ITB Asia. “But if you really want to cover this huge market, you need a show in China. In addition to that, we thought that there’s space for a professional B2B travel trade show in China and we decided to go for it.”
Messe Berlin’s approach to this show was completely different and was demand based, he said. “Before we contacted even a single exhibitor to ask if they would be interested in exhibiting in ITB China, we decided to approach big Chinese travel agencies seeking their support to bring in their buyers. When we officially launched the show in ITB Berlin 2016, we already had secured 600 Chinese buyers.”
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