Sunday 22 October 2017

Dinosaur request wasn't too big for conference planner

Louise McBride

Louise McBride

Organising a gala dinner in the shadow of a Tyrannosaurus rex isn't what you might expect from a conference organiser. Yet this is what Chris Nolan found herself doing as co-owner of corporate conference planner, venuesworld.com.

The Dublin-based company describes itself as a "one-stop shop" for individuals organising business conferences (whether that be the hotel venue, airport transfers to the hotel, gala dinner, etc). The company has local teams in 30 countries and most of the conferences organised by venuesworld.com are outside of Ireland.

Ms Nolan joined the company in 2005. She and fellow co-owner, John Burke, bought the company from Fintan Drury's Platinum One Group in 2008.

Some of the company's well-known clients include Intel in the US and Ernst & Young in the Netherlands.

It was for Intel that the company recently organised the gala dinner amidst the dinosaur exhibition -- which includes a T-rex skeleton -- in San Francisco's California Academy of Sciences.

The British arm of the mountain bike company Trek Bikes is another client. "We organised a 10-day event for Trek Bikes, and as part of that we arranged mountain bike trails in the hills of Frankfurt. It was a new product launch, so people came to test out the bikes," said Ms Nolan.

The company receives over €130m-worth of conference enquiries a year -- and converts about 15 per cent of those into business.

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