Advertising congress spurs on Penang's high-value meeting ambition

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Advertising congress

After four years of ‘intense effort’ the Malaysian state of Penang has won the bid to host the 45th edition of the International Advertising Association (IAA) World Congress. 

IAA exists to champion commercial speech freedom, challenge unwarranted regulations and create industry forums to tackle issues within the advertising, marketing and media industries.

The congress will take place in 2024 and is expected to attract upwards of 2,000 delegates from 26 countries which will contribute an estimated £2.3m to the local economy. 

The announcement comes as the Penang Exhibition and Convention Bureau (PECB) vocalised its ambitions to attract ‘high value and high impact events’ to the state.

PECB CEO, Ashwin Gunasekaran, said: “The Penang Exhibition and Convention Bureau will be selective in the bidding and selection processes of future events, through which mutual benefits are gained by event organisers and the host destination, with the shared intent of creating high value and high impact events.”

John Doody Chacko, chair of the 45th IAA World Congress and president of the IAA Malaysia chapter, said it took more than four years of intense effort against other more established destinations and pandemic disruptions before IAA Malaysia emerged victorious. “It proves that the world is growing to recognise Malaysia and Penang as destinations that are not only attractive in thousands of ways, more importantly, are well equipped in all avenues to host events of world-class stature,” Doody Chacko added. 

The congress will take place under the theme ‘Brand ReCode: Createch for Better Lives, Better World’. The theme aims to rewire brands, people and businesses through creativity and technology in the areas of trade and industry, sustainable healthy living, experiential tourism, and education. The congress programme has been curated around a panel of speakers to deliver conference content, tech expos, board meetings and team buildings, award shows and master classes.

The three-day event, between 6-8 March 2024, will also see an agenda of pre-congress activities. “I am certain that this three-day event with the wealth of knowledge from its distinguished speakers will spark an impetus to recalibrate and re-strategise opportunities for more job creations and employment locally,” said Yeoh Soon Hin, the state executive councillor for Tourism and Creative Economy.

Holly Patrick
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Holly Patrick
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A desire to travel led Holly Patrick to the business meetings and events world and she’s never looked back. Holly takes a particular interest in event sustainability and creating a diverse and inclusive industry. When she’s not working, she can be found rolling skating along Brighton seafront listening to an eclectic playlist, featuring the likes of Patti Smith, Sean Paul, and Arooj Aftab.

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