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ISSUE 66 / ConfErEnCE & MEEtIngS World / 13ICCA ReviewOther key features of the congress were the Business Leads Exchange and sessions on destination marketing and on Africa. There was the usual industry dose of futurology, a major presentation on using social media from CIM Australia's Publisher Alexandra Yeomans, tips from a memory consultant and plenty of networking, not least at the 1920s themed 'Dress to Impress' gala evening. ICCA's 51st Congress and General Assembly takes place in San Juan, Puerto Rico, 20-24 October, 2012. Above: ICCA recognising its longstanding membersICCA's Saxon soundslEIpzIg ConvEntIon CEntrE lAyEd on grEEn jACkEt hoStS And hoSpItAlIty for thE ICCA CoMMUnIty AS thE ASSoCIAtIon rAllIEd rECord nUMbErS for ItS 50th CongrESSver a thousand delegates went to Leipzig for the 50th International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) Congress.Germany accounts for one of ICCA's largest member groups. "Germany is a great location for bringing in delegates from the emerging economies of Eastern Europe and Russia," said ICCA CEO Martin Sirk." There were 250 first time attendees at the Congress. "We're delighted to see a record attendance, as well as a continued growth in membership, including from countries which are suffering the most in the current economic climate," said Sirk, who added that 800 association events were added last year to the 16,000 already on the ICCA database.Some of the newer destinations on the ICCA scene flexed their marketing muscles in Leipzig, including Russia which kicked off the first day programme with an overview of its fast developing MICE industry. CEO of St Petersburg's Lenexpo, Sergei Alexeev, told CMW of the new ownership structure which had seen Gazprombank-funded ExpoForum take over his company, a move he described as "a fantastic opportunity" both for the new US$1bn ExpoForum site at Pulkovo airport and for Russia in general.Head of Mexico's Tourism Board Eduardo Chaillo revealed the economic impact of his country's meetings industry is now US$18bn, according to the country's first ever economic impact study for the meetings industry.He said 830,000 foreign attendees had taken part in meetings in Mexico in 2010, contributing US$12bn to the GDP. A joint entry from Glasgow City Marketing Bureau and the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre won the ICCA Best Marketing Award 2011. Aileen Crawford, Head of Conventions at Glasgow City Marketing Bureau and Ben Goedegebuure, Director of Sales at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre presented 'The Glasgow Model' as a case study of the World Parkinson Congress 2010."We've all had clients who are nervous about funding for their events, worried about their delegate numbers and overall financial success," said Crawford. "And we feel it is our duty to support them in any way that we can. In Glasgow this made us think differently about what we needed to do to remain successful because we are not a capital city and we have to build on our strengths. "Most importantly, we realised that it was not enough to be 'just' suppliers to our clients. We had to change into active partners and become stakeholders in our clients' events."The Gala Dinner saw former ICCA CEO Tom Hulton awarded the Moises Shuster Award for outstanding service in the international meetings industry.WordS Paul colstonOWe have to change and become stakeholders in our clients' eventsaileen crawford, head of conventions, glasgow city marketing bureau