TTM 2018 to host inaugural Supplier Expo

Travel Trade Maldives (TTM) 2018 will play host to the first ever TTM Supplier Expo, organiser Maldives Getaways announced Wednesday.

In a statement, the local PR firm said over 50 international and local tourism related suppliers would attend the first TTM Supplier Expo, to be held as part of the second edition of TTM from May 1-3, 2018. The expo is aimed at creating a world-class platform for industry players to engage and connect with suppliers, it added.

According to Maldives Getaways, the expo will provide the opportunity for potential buyers to get an overview of offers in the industry. This will include accommodation, transport and F&B related suppliers marketing products such as beds, benches, chairs, floor coverings, glass tables, hot tubs, lamps, plastic chairs, pools, slides, tiles, garden furniture amongst others, it said.

“During the Inaugural TTM, we received requests from suppliers to take part in TTM. Due to high demand, we will be accommodating suppliers this time in order to cater for the resorts that are due to open up in the coming year. We believe that the supplier forum would be instrumental for these properties as well as currently running properties to source their daily needs up to improving their wine list,” Dr Hussein Sunny Umar, Chief Operating Officer at Maldives Getaways, was quoted in the statement, as saying.

The TTM Supplier Expo is expected to serve as an innovative marketplace dedicated to industry professionals. It will be a complete event that promotes the entire value chain, capitalising on the supplier side while promoting the dynamism of Maldives world-class tourism products and demand worldwide.

The first edition of TTM concluded successfully on July 13, with business contracts worth over USD 1 billion discussed during the two-day travel trade show. More than 100 hoteliers held over 3,000 meetings with 150 agents and tour operators from across the globe.

As a major component of TTM, a hotelier summit was held, where tourism industry pioneer Mohamed Umar Maniku delivered the keynote address, while motivational speaker Paul McNeive also addressed the summit. Four panels on pressing issues in the industry took place at the summit in which more than 80 general managers from resorts and hotels across the Maldives took part in.

In addition to the hotelier summit, a tourism career fair was also held as part of TTM, providing job seekers, students, employers, training institutions and government agencies an opportunity to network. More than 2,000 visitors attended the career fair, which was hosted by some 75 resorts.

Meanwhile, TTM gala night, held at Adaaran Select Hudhuranfushi resort on the last day of the event, hosted Maldives Travel Awards – People’s Edition, which recognised 10 outstanding individuals from the hospitality industry.

Organisers have expanded the scope of TTM 2018 by stretching it over three days and adding more components such as the first ever Guesthouses Expo, Dive Expo as well as the newly announced TTM Supplier Expo.

Maldives recorded 1.2 million tourist arrivals in 2016 with a total of receipts around USD 2.5 billion. With the rapid changes in global travel markets, Maldives continues to strengthen its foothold as one of the leading tourist destinations in the world. While tourism still remains the leading economic industry in the country by far, innovative new approaches in marketing are required to ensure the sector remains at the top.

TTM aims to facilitate the tourism industry of Maldives to reach the ultimate target of two million tourists with over USD 3.5 billion in receipts by the end of 2020.

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