IAPCO shares its members' 2021 statistics



# tags: IAPCO , Associations , Meetings Industry

The statistics are based on annual return data provided by IAPCO members, informs the association.

Despite the turbulences of the past 2 years, IAPCO had a 99% retention rate on membership and new applications are currently being processed. The community has now 138 PCO offices in 40 countries.

"The immense value that our Members place in their Membership of IAPCO is evident in this years’ annual retention rate which stands at an enviable 99%. This is a remarkable success story in light of the global pandemic and in comparison, to what many other associations are experiencing", says Ori Lahav, IAPCO President.

The crisis has impacted the employment. With 7,163 staff around the world, the IAPCO Membership community is down 20% and back to 2017 levels. However, members have indicated high activity in recruitment through the latter part of 2021 and into 2022 as the meetings industry re-opens globally.

Regarding the number of events, in 2021 were delivered 11,945. Switching to virtual and hybrid event formats has significantly raised the number of attendees from previous years with 14 million in total . The ratio of attendees is 2/3 virtual and 1/3 in person.

"Collectively, our members have doubled the number of attendees from 2019. Reaching new audiences, providing accessibility and inclusivity for all around the globe has been a positive outcome of these virtual and hybrid formats”, states Martin Boyle, IAPCO CEO.

The industry sector of the events delivered has also significantly changed, with 60% now being association meetings, vs 4% governmental and 24% corporate, where corporate represented more than 50% of the meetings organised pre-pandemic. Whilst corporates were able to deliver and report on the meetings they had, association events are seen as essential to the functioning of society and, as such, associations’ meetings continued in different formats throughout the pandemic.

With the shift to virtual and hybrid formats, sqm exhibition sales were anticipated to be significantly reduced from pre-pandemic. This information was therefore not requested in the 2021 survey. However, sponsors and exhibitors continued their support with close to €300m invested in IAPCO Member client events in 2021.