ANA exclusive interview with Zinhle Nzama

ANA’s travel editor Niels Bartels interviews Zinhle Nzama during the IBTM Conference in Barcelona

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IBTM World is the leading global event for the meetings, incentives, conferences and events industry, taking place annually in Barcelona.

IBTM stands for Incentives, Business Travel & Meetings. The goal of the event is to bring together the whole international MICE industry to meet, network, connect and do business.

15.000 industry professionals from over 100 countries across the world attended the event.

AfricaNewsAnalysis’ Travel Editor, Niels Bartels reported on the event and met up with Zinhle Nzama who is the Acting Chief Convention Bureau Officer of the South Africa National Convention Bureau. Read below, excerpts of their conversation:

Niels: South Africa has just launched a new campaign. What is the campaign about ?

Zinhle Nzama: The campaign is really positioning South Africa as a destination with its knowledgeable people. If you look at our world class infrastructure that we have it’s also about the infrastructure. Basically the infrastructure says you can certainly come to South Africa and host any event. We have the right convention centres and we have the right accommodation and the right roads that will lead you to wherever you wanna go. Our infrastructure does become an enabling environment for you to host your events in South Africa. Then the campaign also says our ways, so how do we do things differently? It is important to say: Through the knowledge that we possess as a destination. We have just shown you a video at our stand about a doctor who is one of the pioneers of ear 3D implant, so that tells you the ways, the innovation that we have, the technology that we have as South Africa, all of that combined, it makes it an efficient but also an enabled destination for you to host your business events.

Niels: You have a very big trade fair stand here. Why is the IBTM such an important event for you ?

Zinhle: It’s very important. Besides the fact that this is a global event so it means you are able to talk to everyone under one roof. It makes it easier to connect with many people at a go. IBTM has the right type of buyers, especially buyers that are looking for what we can offer as a destination.

Ms Zinhle Nzama

If you look at the stand and the exhibitors that are there: we have convention centres and we have convention bureaus. If you come to a destination, we can certainly create a package for you to have your event. We also have DMCs: destination management companies and these are products that are able to package the whole experience into one. The exhibitors that are there are carefully selected to ensure that they match the needs of the buyers so that it is easier to connect but also offer what the buyers are looking for.

Niels: Do you have any special offers here ? Or any new offers / products which you have launched during the event?

Zinhle: Oh certainly. We have new products. There is a product that is a sky hotel. What it does is that this hotel actually has robots. So it’s technologically equipped to service you in a technological manner. They have innovation built in their hotel. So it’s easier to adjust to any of our customer needs. So if a guest comes to that hotel they are able to literally get everything through the technological built kind of equipment. It is one of the new offers that came post covid but there are also other offers besides the hotel that is present here, there are other offers that you will find when you come to our destination. I think the key message and the key take out is: as much as we are a third world country, our facilities, our infrastructure and different innovations that we have built into the destination can certainly afford you an experience that you are looking for.

Niels: Thank you for the interview