BNI (Business Network International), the world’s leading business referral organization, selected Singapore as the destination for its November 2022 Global Convention.
The event — BNI’s first in-person convention since COVID-19 — brought together over 2,000 attendees from 74 countries, including leadership and franchise owners, for an exciting week of training and networking. An additional 1,000 people joined the hybrid event virtually.
“We chose Singapore because it is a destination of business,” said Dani Velazco, director of global events at BNI. “You’re seeing a lot of big companies working with or through Singapore. The city offers a diverse range of experiences, including premium options for our Asian market, which has been growing in recent years.”
Beyond business, Singapore was perfect because of many venues and differentiated experiences. BNI took advantage of the fact that the city-state is surrounded by islands to offer two very different experiences in one destination: Though the convention was held at Resorts World Sentosa (RWS)’s convention center on Sentosa Island, it was still very accessible for attendees to experience the rest of Singapore’s attractions and city center, which is located only 10 minutes away.
Ease of integrating sustainability experiences
Sustainability was one of the key considerations during the planning of the event, and BNI was able to seamlessly integrate eco-friendly experiences into the event against the backdrop of Singapore as a City in Nature with RWS’s dedication to adopt sustainability in all their operations.
As part of its Eco Events Package — RWS’ commitment to no single-plastics, holistic food waste management and energy efficient practices — the convention center served boxed water, donated unserved food safely to The Food Bank, and used china and silver instead of plastic.
Reusable tote bags were handed out as door gifts and all reading materials were distributed electronically and in multiple languages through an event app.
Hybrid format enhanced accessibility
The convention’s agenda was delivered in a hybrid format — livestreamed and recorded for video on demand.
“As some countries are still impacted by COVID-19 travel restrictions, we decided to have a hybrid format so that attendees have the option to participate virtually,” Velazco said.
Singapore‘s strong pool of experienced staff and event ecosystem, equipped with the latest state-of-the-art technology, made planning seamless. Velazco shared, “We were able to have multiple rooms live streaming, with simultaneous translations in six languages through a cloud-based system to attendees’ phones without any buffering. This was on top of our digital check-
in and over 2,000 attendees using the wifi for our mobile app. This level of service and technology is a must for post-pandemic events.”
Does BNI plan to return to Singapore?
“Absolutely!” said Velazco. “We would come back for three reasons: Singapore’s standing as a hub for business in Asia, the top-notch service and diverse cuisine options available, and the unparalleled customer service received by our event team and attendees. Everything just works in Singapore! RWS went above and beyond to accommodate any changes, medical emergencies and last-minute logistical requests.”
“Singapore is a stunning city,” she added. “I’ve never seen a cleaner city, and every restaurant and venue we went to was pristine. Everyone was so welcoming and they truly went out of their way to ensure that every attendee had the best experience.”
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