October update from the CEO

We hosted our sixth successful Annual General Meeting (AGM) on October 7 at Cape Town International Convention Centre and I enjoyed seeing so many tourism friends at the event.

Congratulations to the re-elected Board members, Pierre du Plessis, Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana, Claus Tworeck and Susanne Faussner-Ringer, as well as a fifth new member, Sarah Struys. The list of the full Board can be viewed here.

It was a pleasure to review the successes of the past momentous year, especially those during the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, as well as take time to think ahead and share our plans as they look toward 2020. Cape Town’s private and public sectors need to find creative, innovative techniques to ensure that our tourism industry is “future fit” if we are to achieve our aim to double the economic impact of tourism by 2020. Read my full speech from the AGM.

Our guest speaker, international destination marketing expert Claes Bjerkne, pointed out that Cape Town and the Western Cape offer visitors just about everything, from wine tours and safaris to marine experiences and natural beauty, and that this needs to be packaged under one super-brand. Bjerkne argued that Cape Town would be the ideal master brand as it is one of the better-known cities of the world.

Bjerkne also facilitated a leadership breakfast with industry members and stakeholders after the AGM. View a summary of the main items discussed.

Some of our priorities for the year ahead will be focusing on building a compelling brand for Cape Town, engaging trade and media new source markets, implementing a focused event strategy and continuing to use web, e-marketing and technology to remain relevant within an ever-changing environment.

More than 70% of travel decisions and bookings are now being made online. Cape Town Tourism is committed to playing a leadership role in ensuring that the tourism industry is ready for this shift, and as such announced that it will be the host sponsor of the third annual E-Tourism Africa Summit. Taking place for the first time ever in Cape Town, the two-day online tourism and technology summit will be held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on October 25 and 26, 2010. Read more about the summit.

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