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Barcelona venue smashes sales record ahead of management change

The International Convention Centre of Barcelona (CCIB) broke its previous turnover record in 2018 – just two years before operator GL Events has its contract terminated.

The venue posted sales of EUR37.2m last year – an increase of 11.5 per cent on 2017 and 3.1 per cent above the record set in 2007, improving on pre-financial crisis levels.

In 2021 the venue will be taken in-house when Barcelona City Council hands management over to trade fair organisation and exhibition centre owner Fira Barcelona on a 50-year deal.

Fira Barcelona is owned by a consortium made up of the city council, Barcelona chamber of commerce, and the Government of Catalonia.

The CCIB’s extraordinary results were largely driven by the international meetings market, which accounted for almost 90 per cent (87 per cent) of turnover, and repeat business.

The venue hosted major international medical and scientific events with congresses such as human reproduction society ESHRE (11,500 delegates), radiotherapy society ESTRO (6,100 delegates), ISPOR (5,500 healthcare professionals), and brain disorder group ECNP (5,050 delegates). It also hosted the first meeting outside the American continent of the Association of Latin American Studies (6,400 delegates) and the 63rd meeting of ICANN, the body that regulates the internet all over the world (1,200 delegates).

Forecasts for 2019 indicate that CCIB will again break records. Between 2019 and 2021, the venue has more than a hundred events booked, 76 of which will attract at least 1,000 delegates.