21 Business SEC strikes ICE deal The Scottish Event Campus (SEC) has agreed a partnership with ICE, the community of corporate meeting and event planners. The agreement will build on the SEC’s existing partnership with ICE, and includes sponsorship of the ICE Awards, which take place this summer for the fourth time. The SEC will work collaboratively with ICE and through a number of research projects within its community. A.O.B: Leeds unveils £35m plan Leeds has unveiled a £35m six-year cultural programme, which the city conference bureau says will lead up to a year-long celebration of the city’s diverse culture in 2023. The announcement builds on the momentum created by the Leeds 2023 bid for European Capital of Culture. Leeds is a top 10 conferencing city, according to the 2017 British Meetings and Events Industry survey. GOOD MONTH FOR: HBAA looks forward to strong 2018 Freeman has been named an approved partner for all Mobile World Congress events worldwide in a three-year deal. Freeman’s ShowFloorplans, ShowHub, ShowLive and ShowVision products will be used at all shows The average spend per meeting and average spend per delegate in the UK both grew significantly year on year in 2017, despite a slight decline in the average Daily Delegate Rate (DDR). These are among the notable results revealed in the HBAA Meetings Barometer for 2017, developed in partnership with The MeetingsBenchmark Ltd. The HBAA Meetings Barometer indicates that that average spend per meeting increased to £1,954 in 2017 from £1,613 in 2016, an increase of 21.2%, while the average spend per delegate rose by 21.0% to £88.35 from £73.04 in the previous year. With the average DDR falling slightly to £32.88 from £33.06 in 2016, the key driving force behind this growth is the increase in the average meeting size. The average number of delegates increased from 50 to 53. With the average size of meetings booked to date currently at 74, prospects for 2018 are encouraging so far. Louise Goalen (pictured), HBAA chair, observed: “The growth revealed by these results confirms that 2017 was a good year for UK meetings industry sales; 2018 is on course to be better.” BAD MONTH FOR: Smyle Group’s projected increase in turnover is £11.5 by 31 March 2018. It’s been a bad month for the developers who had hoped to demolish Kempton Park racecourse. The plan is now ‘unlikely’. www.conference-news.co.uk Legacy grants available The Incredible Impacts Programme, developed by the BestCities Global Alliance and ICCA, is looking for associations to share examples of how they are leaving long-term legacies. Factors such as sustainability, environmental considerations and knowledge sharing are fundamental elements of international associations and the Incredible Impacts Grant presents an opportunity to showcase best examples that will inspire and motivate others. Three grants of US$7,500 are available.