The Sandton Convention Centre, in collaboration with Junior Chamber International South Africa and the City of Joburg, has won a bid to host the Africa & Middle East Conference of Junior Chamber International in 2016, a prominent global platform for young business leaders. This is the second time since the inception of the conference in 2005 that Johannesburg is the host city – the only city to have been appointed to host the event more than once to date.
“It’s a real feather in the cap of the city and the SCC,” comments Dr Mati Nyazema, executive director of Sandton Convention Centre. “It’s an indication of the position that we hold as a world-class city with world-class facilities. The city is also easily accessible from anywhere in the world and the Convention Centre is conveniently located in Sandton, South Africa’s business hub, with easy access to the Gautrain.”
A unique aspect of the bidding process was the speed with which the decision was made. Yoshni Singh, international sales manager for Sandton Convention Centre, says the request for bids was received in mid-April – and within a month the bid had been awarded.
The Africa & Middle East Conference of Junior Chamber International will take place from 4 to 6 May 2016, with 1 000 delegates. The conference will include breakaway rooms, cocktail events, and other special events.
Linda Ben, national president of JCI South Africa, says presenting Johannesburg as the host city made logistical sense for the local chapter as the city is the most active region of JCI in the country. “Added to that, all our bidding partners wholeheartedly came on board and fully supported the bid throughout the entire process, making it that much easier to present the winning bid.”
Comments Ms Singh: “Sandton Convention Centre’s ideal location in the Sandton business hub, adjacent to a wide range of accommodation, shopping malls, restaurants and entertainment, is likely to have been a factor in the decision-making. As, of course, is the venue’s extensive facilities and excellent track record in hosting top global events.”
Sandton Convention Centre has an impressive lineup of international events that it has and is hosting, which include Power Africa from 2009 to 2015; Africa Energy Indaba from 2010 to 2015; Totally Concrete from 2013 to 2015; Africities in 2015; CIDESCO – World of Beauty and Spa Therapy in 2015; the phenomenally successful Days of the Dinosaurs in 2014; the World Orchid Conference and Show in 2014; and many others. “More than 60 per cent of the Convention Centre’s bookings are repeat business, indicating a strong degree of satisfaction with our overall offering,” says Dr Nyazema.
“As Africa’s largest purpose-built convention and exhibition centre, the Sandton Convention Centre is looking forward to pulling out all the stops to ensure the Africa and Middle East JCI conference in 2016 will be the best one ever,” adds Ms Singh.