The importance of the events industry of London cannot be underestimated. Our capital boasts some of the most unique and unusual venues our country has to offer. It competes on the international stage for some of the largest association conferences and multinational corporate events and of course has a diverse and growing population.
As such an important destination, it falls to London & Partners to promote the city and drive the events industry forward. With the aim of building London’s international reputation and to create additional jobs and growth for the London economy, London & partners mission is to “tell London's story brilliantly.”
So, we decided to catch up with Deborah Kelly, Head of UK Sales to find to more about the company and how Deborah got into the events industry.
Lime Venue Portfolio: Please can you give us an introduction about yourself and what you do?
Deborah Kelly: Hi, well I lead UK sales activity, handling international events and conventions for London from the UK market, for London & Partners.
LVP: So what is London Partners?
DK: London & Partners is the Mayor’s official promotional company for London. Our aim is to promote all that London has to offer to international visitors, students and businesses.
Part of London & Partners’ activity is to promote London for meetings and events, and we have three teams (US, Europe, UK) working alongside our convention bureau to showcase London’s offering to meeting planners all over the world.
LVP: Who do you work with?
DK: London & Partners is a public private partnership, which means we are partly funded by the Greater London Authority and we get the rest of our funding through our extensive network of private partners.
On the Business Tourism side, our partners range from Destination Management Companies and attractions to hotels and venues such as Lime Venue Portfolio.
LVP: How did you get into the meetings and events industry?
DK: After studying International Tourism Management and volunteering on various events while at university, I got my first job in the industry promoting Manchester as a conference destination. I worked there for 7 years before moving to London to take up my current role.
LVP: What are your 3 top tips to anyone wanting to join the events industry?
DK: Industry associations are a great way to network and get to know the ins and outs of the event world. Events like MPI’s Insights Series end EventHuddle are good examples of useful events for people wanting to get into the event industry.
There’s also a lot of information available out there to gain greater insight into events trends, especially in the specialised press which is great for round-ups of the latest happenings.
Finally, there’s nothing like volunteering to gain experience.
LVP: Why are you passionate about what you do/the events industry?
DK: My job is incredibly diverse and I get to work with and meet fantastic and talented people.
And what could be better than promoting the greatest city in the world?
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