When you choose a destination for an event, what do you look for? Accessibility for sure, a choice of good hotels at affordable prices, good food and beverages within budget and a destination that will excite and motivate your delegates/guests are all bound to be high on the agenda. But how often do you think about the nuts and bolts of the event such as the availability of audio-visual equipment, set-building and lighting equipment?
These areas are seldom at the top of the list but imperative if you are going to transmit important messages to your audience. This was a lesson driven home by the choice of Budapest for The CEAT Platinum Dealer’s Meet 2017, the annual gathering of the Indian tyre manufacturer’s network.
The event was held at the InterContinental Hotel in Budapest and the Indian tyre manufacturer chose the city because of its historical importance and heritage as well as the range of exciting venues, proposed by the event managers, Maximus Mice and Media Solutions. The three-day, four-night Meet saw 50 high-performing dealers from around the world attending and included sessions, meetings and tours as well as several entertainment events.
Budapest as a destination proved to be not very challenging for the MICE aspect of the trip but Maximus Events did have to source materials for the event from outside the city. Sharing his opinion on the ease of doing events in Budapest, Dhanraj Madnani, senior manager business development and client Servicing, said: “Budapest has a lot to offer when it comes to sightseeing, activities and also MICE infrastructure. However, for the event aspect, a lot of material was not readily available or if available not at the best rates. This included audio-visual, lighting and set fabrication materials. With the growing industry, it’s getting competitive for destinations and providing the best cost is important for any client. As far as logistics were concerned, we had to source a lot of material from Vienna and Prague.”
For Maximus and their client, it was a lesson well learned. A CEAT spokesperson said that the Meet in Budapest offered a truly international ambience and interface among top international performers of the company who were able to share experiences and discuss modus operandi in different markets, giving insights into different business models that they could explore for their own markets in future. The coming together of dealers from various countries was very motivating for the participants as the nature of the meet was exclusive and very intense.
The highlight of the first day was a welcome dinner at Prestige Cruise which featured an international buffet. The second day’s activities included a tour of the city that covered Budapest Parliament, St. Matthias Church and Heroes Square, followed by lunch at Varosliget-Budapest Ice Rink. Delegates were then given time to spend on their own before the conference and entertainment event after their return to the hotel. This was followed by cocktails at Fisherman’s Bastion leading to Margareta Terrace. Dinner took place at Halaszbastya Restaurant. Following the conference on the third day, lunch took place at Spoon Restaurant, after which delegates visited Szechenyi Spa for some rejuvenation. Dinner was at Borkatakomba Restaurant in the city, serving local delicacies.
Talking about the team’s experience managing the event, Dhanraj Madnani said: “We had to plan the event keeping in mind that delegates were coming from different parts of the world and different cultures were involved. When we first took on this project, it was also quite a challenge as there was both a MICE aspect and an event as part of the Meet. But it was a very successful event, a result of the beautiful teamwork between CEAT and us. I think we can foresee many such successful events to come with CEAT Tyres as a brand.”