Advantage Travel Partnership is set to launch Advantage Meetings and Events, with industry experts Andrew Winterburn and Ian Quartermaine at the helm.

According to Advantage, the business division will provide resources, knowledge, assistance and white-labelled full-service event management for all Advantage members.

Launching on 12 June, Advantage Meetings and Events will initially be available to all UK members before being rolled out internationally in 2019 to the WIN Global Travel Network.

Winterburn brings more than 25 years’ experience in the meetings and events industry, having been instrumental in building businesses with offices in Europe, North America and Asia.

Meanwhile, Quartermaine is a highly experienced meetings and events professional who was prominent in the establishment of the international division of Helmsbriscoe, a venue-finding service that spans 40 countries.

Advantage said it appointed the pair to develop its meetings and events product as a way to expand its portfolio of services for its members.

The division will offer a variety of support, from full-service events management and marketing to venue finding and RFP and RFI development, as well as training.

Members will also have access to pre-negotiated hotel rates, the ability to request and book group rates with selected airlines, supplier agreements with destination management companies, as well as print and design providers. Advantage can also arrange other services such as budgeting and financial management, standard operating procedures and on-site event management staff.

Winterburn commented: “There is major growth in the SME sector, which is driving the need for small to mid-size meetings. The UK M&E market is estimated to be worth approximately £21 billion, so this new solution will provide members with the fantastic opportunity to grow their revenues within this sector, service the needs of their existing clients and pitch for new business.”

Quartermaine added: “Over the course of our careers, we’ve arranged everything from small meetings to corporate overseas events for hundreds of people. We’ll be able to share this experience with Advantage members to help them grow their own businesses by better serving their clients.”

Neil Armorgie, global product director at Advantage, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Ian and Andrew on board to help us launch and implement Advantage Meetings and Events. We listened to our members and identified that more than two-thirds would like a meetings and events solution, with 88 per cent already implementing meetings but requiring additional support. We are delighted to be launching a service that will support every member, whether they are established in the M&E sector, or just starting out.”

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