GLASGOW won a record amount of future conference business in the year to March, worth an estimated £141 million in revenues, the latest annual figures have revealed.

In the last financial year, the city confirmed 513 new international and UK meetings through to 2022, equating to about 420,000 delegate days, Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB) noted.

Publishing the latest annual figures of its Convention Bureau, revealing the record year for Glasgow in terms of future conference revenues secured, GCMB highlighted the part played by “ambassadors” from the academic, scientific, medical and business communities in attracting conferences to the city.

GCMB said the Glasgow Conference Ambassador Programme, which it manages, had secured 49 per cent of all conference business booked in 2015/16, compared with only 30 per cent two years earlier.

The £141m figure for future conference revenues secured during the year to March, the benefits of which will be felt as far out as 2022, was up from a corresponding £139m in the 2014/15 financial year. In 2013/14, Glasgow secured future conference business worth £134m in revenue terms.

A spokesman for GCMB noted that, in the marketing bureau’s first year of operation, Glasgow had secured future conference business worth about £65m in revenue terms.

GCMB highlighted the importance of its partnerships with the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Glasgow’s universities and the wider business community in helping it secure the record future conference business in the year to March.

It said successful bids won in 2015/16 by Glasgow for future years included the European Association for Chinese Studies’ conference in 2018. GCMB noted this bid had been led by Minna Torma, lecturer in Chinese art at the University of Glasgow’s

School of Culture and Creative Arts.

Glasgow also achieved success with its bid to stage the annual meeting of the European Society of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition in 2019. GCMB noted this effort had been led by Dr Richard Russell and Dr Richard Hansen, both consultant paediatric gastroenterologists at Glasgow’s Royal Hospital for Children.

The city also succeeded with its bid to host the International Conference on Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in 2021. This meeting, GCMB noted, was secured by David Koppel, consultant surgeon at the city’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital.

GCMB, now part of Glasgow City Council arm Glasgow Life, also noted the success of a bid to stage the World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2018. It said this meeting was won through a partnership between the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, the GCMB, and the SECC.

It also highlighted Glasgow’s securing of the annual meeting of the British Association of Dermatologists in 2022. It noted this conference had been won by GCMB and the SECC in partnership with the British Association of Dermatologists.

GCMB said that, together, these five conferences would attract nearly 12,000 delegates from around the UK and overseas to Glasgow in the next six years, injecting more than £20m into the city’s economy.

It noted that, in securing these various conferences, Glasgow had seen off strong competition from Prague, Stockholm, Lisbon, Vienna and London.

Glasgow City Council leader Frank McAveety, who chairs GCMB, said: “Our year-end results are a clear endorsement of the confidence that the global meetings industry continues to have in Glasgow, and further strengthens our reputation as one of the world’s premier business tourism destinations.”

He added: “Glasgow is a great example of a city that understands the relevance of its knowledge hub economy.”

Mr McAveety noted that, in 2015/16, 48 per cent of all conference business secured by Glasgow for future years was the city’s “key economic sectors of life sciences, medical, energy, sustainability, low carbon industries, engineering, financial and business services”. He noted this represented 10 per cent growth on the previous year.

He added: “The importance of our world-class Ambassador Programme in that cannot be understated. Our ambassadors are experts within their specific industries and working closely with them ensures that we’re aware of the trends and latest research developing in their fields.”

Kathleen Warden, director of conference sales at the SECC, said: “Once again, Glasgow is demonstrating its position as a major UK and international conference location, and we are delighted that the SECC continues to be a strong economic driver for Glasgow and Scotland.”

The Convention Bureau figures cover future conference business from the UK and overseas secured in 2015/16.

Research published last month showed that Glasgow attracted more international conference delegates last year than New York, Washington DC or Beijing – and the city was second in the UK only to London as it achieved its best global ranking for 10 years.

The International Congress and Convention Association figures revealed that 36,885 delegates attended international conferences in Glasgow in 2015, putting the city in 28th place out of 400 in the world on this measure. Vienna was top and London was second.

Glasgow was just ahead of the Chinese capital of Beijing, which recorded 35,942 international conference delegates and Dublin, with 33,178. Washington DC was placed 44th, and New York City was in 53rd position.

Glasgow City Marketing Bureau emphasised that, while business tourism is enjoying major success, there are still far more leisure visitors than conference delegates. A spokesman noted conference delegates accounted for about 150,000 of around two million visitors to the city each year, highlighting the popularity and growth of leisure tourism.