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Hold the date: WIT heads to Sydney June 21

Posted on 24 Apr 2011 at 23:37 pm

Tapping into the growing interest in Asia in Australia, WIT will be holding a one-day conference in Sydney, Australia on June 21.

Themed “Marketing To The New Traveller in Asia”, WIT Australia will be targeted at suppliers in Australia who are looking to the region for new customers, and engage with them in today’s digital, social and mobile age.

Said Yeoh Siew Hoon, founder of the annual WIT Conference in Singapore, “Over the last few years, the traveller in Asia has been changing, not only in travel desires and aspirations but also in the way they search, plan and book travel.

“New technology and tools are empowering these new customers, giving them confidence to venture further on their own and raising expectations in what they want in both their digital and travel experiences.

“After attending the Australian Tourism Exchange last month in Sydney, I saw a need to bring Australia and Asia closer together in terms of understanding how the customer in Asia is changing, how suppliers can reach out to them using digital means and how they can better delight these new travellers who come with different and often higher expectations.”

The one-day conference, which will have the WIT signature style of discussions and debates and is supported by HSMAI Asia Pacific, will gather leading experts in their fields to shed light on these travelers and their online behaviour.

Speakers confirmed to date include Kei Shibata, CEO,, Japan’s leading travel search portal; Fritz Demopolous, CEO, Qunar, China’s leading travel search portal; Alvin Ch’ng, commercial director, Asia Pacific, TripAdvisor; Morris Sim, CEO, Circos Brand Karma; Robbie Cooke, group CEO,Wotif Group; Darren Wright, head of commercial, AirAsia X; Roland Jegge, vice president-Asia Pacific, WORLDHOTELS; Siva Ganeshandan, vice president-Asia Pacific, Autonomy Optimost; Timothy Hughes, the name behind the BOOT blog and Ian Cumming, director, Insight4, with more to be confirmed.

WIT is working with Elizabeth Rich, CEO of Agenda Pty Ltd, to manage the event on the ground. Rich recently announced her retirement as chief executive of the Business Events Council of Australia after 17 years to pursue her own projects.

Tourism Australia recently unveiled its 2020 Tourism Industry Potential targets – to double visitor expenditure from the current A$70 billion to $115-$140 billion and increase visitor arrivals from 6 million to 10 million.

To achieve those targets, Australia has to increase the international market share. Currently, domestic is 62% of spending and this will go down to 55%. International tourism will go from 38% to 45%.

Asian markets feature strongly among the top 10 markets identified to drive growth in order of expenditure (in order) – China, USA, UK, South Korea, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, India, Malaysia, Germany and France.
More details will be announced soon.

Tags: WIT , Sydney , New Traveller in Asia , Tourism Australia , Elizabeth Rich