In the face of depleted resource and absence of tourists due to the COVID 19 pandemic, the Managing Director Pride Inn hotel, of one Kenya’s hospitality firm, Hasnain Noorani has noted the potential of MICE tourism in the recovery of the sector and called on stakeholders to invest in it.
According the-star.co.ke, Noorani, who is the Pride Inn hotel managing director, said that tapping into all sub-sectors in tourism is key in it’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.
“MICE tourism is not only business related but contributes largely to leisure travel as when investors visit the country for conferences they might want to visit again for holiday,” he said.
Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions(MICE) tourism refers to a specialised niche of group tourism dedicated to planning, booking, and facilitating conferences, seminars, and other events.
The MD said this during the launch of the hotel’s virtual conferencing solution to bridge the gap presented by measures taken avoid the spread of Covid-19 thus leading to less conferences being held.
Dubbed ‘RevMeet’, the platform has been innovated to enhance the firm’s conferencing business during and post Covid-19.
The product is a partnership between the hotel chain, Safaricom and Microsoft that will set the stage for hospitality industry recovery especially in MICE tourism.
“This product will be able to attract various meetings and conferences to our hotels thus increase occupancy levels in the hotel even from international guests,” said Noorani.
The tourism ministry has been keen to grow business tourism in the country where leisure(holiday) has dominated.
Business tourists accounted for 13.5 per cent of the about 1.5 million international visitors who came into the country between January and September 2019, Tourism Research Institute data shows.
It is estimated that every international delegate spends at least Sh376,000 per conference trip of about three to six days, reflecting the huge potential MICE holds for the economy.
In December 2019, the tourism ministry unveiled the Kenya National Convention Bureau(KNCB)that was given the task to market Kenya as a top MICE destination.
KNCB targets to propel Kenya to the top 50 MICE destination globally and at least top two in Africa by 2022.
Globally, Kenya is ranked 73, in the latest industry data-The International Congress and Convention Association(2018) report.