BOSSES at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre have revealed plans for a £100 million refurbishment and extension that would “make a statement on the world stage”.

Having revealed a pre-tax profit of £1m based on revenue of £29.4m for the year-ending March 31, SECC chief executive Peter Duthie unveiled a plan for the business to be “the best event campus in Europe”.

He said the success of The Hydro, which is the third busiest live entertainment arena in the world, had made the business examine where its next step change would come from.

A feasibility study is underway, examining a major refurbishment of the current exhibition space – including an improved entrance – and new facilities to the west side of the campus, which could allow two major events to take place simultaneously. Residential and potentially other mixed uses which will complement existing site activities are also being considered.

In addition to this, planning permission is expected to be granted for two hotels on the campus that will add 400 bedrooms and serviced apartments.

Construction on the hotels is expected to commence in the second half of 2016. The entire redevelopment is expected to take up to five years to complete.

“We’ve got ambitious plans and they don’t come cheap,” said Mr Duthie. “So, we’re building the business case, the economic case, and engaging with key stakeholders as to their willingness to participate.

“It’s hard to put a number on it, but I suppose we’d be looking at a project that was in excess of £100m, it would be fair to say.”

Mr Duthie said the work would be funded partly from the business’ own resources with the majority coming from the public sector. Glasgow City Council is the majority shareholder in the SECC.

In 1997, the city funded a £40m extension to the campus, which Mr Duthie said had kick-started the conference industry of scale in Glasgow.

“What that has delivered over the last 20 years as a one-off capital investment with no further revenue support has been phenomenal.

“Clearly public sector funding is challenging at the moment but the argument would be on the economics, for what that would bring to the campus, the city and country.”

Mr Duthie said Brexit would not disrupt plans for the campus expansion, or the business’ future success. “We’re going through a period of unprecedented turbulence, the economic situation is going to be challenging for the next couple of years, however Scotland and Glasgow are still going to be a very attractive destinations in world terms and if we can create a facility that matches that we believe the market will still come,” he said.

The announcement comes the week after Glasgow City Marketing Bureau confirmed 513 new international and UK meetings have been booked in Glasgow through to 2022, equating to about 420,000 delegate days.

It was a record year for conferences with 16 international events and 18 per cent revenue growth. In the exhibition sector, 17 per cent revenue growth was the result of six new shows and high retention levels for established events.

The Hydro saw visitor numbers again pass one million. Box office turnover, however, decreased by 21 per cent during the year. This was attributed to shorter lead times for events in the 2016/17 diary.