Jaime Lee took to the stage at Sibos 2023 in Toronto, Canada for a private session with exhibitors to explore the potential for a successful event in Beijing, China next year.
The Sibos team explained that plans to host the conference in China were in place prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, but now “constraints” have been removed, Swift will follow in the advice and experience other international events have made post-2020.
Reiterating that Beijing is a global financial centre, China is the world’s second largest economy, and the country is the 5th largest market on Swift, Lee highlighted that it is important to host the event in a new area to welcome more delegates from the Asia Pacific region.
Sibos will also continue to provide a digital layer and sessions will be available online.
Lee added that the Swift team are working closely with several partners based in Beijing, and one key collaborator headquartered in Singapore was responsible for the 2022 Winter Olympics.
The 2024 event will be held at China National Convention Center, which is split between what is referred to as CNCC1 and the new wing, CNCC2. Lee mentioned that Swift would like to hear from the community to assess their “appetite” for Beijing.
A survey is to be sent out to exhibitors to gather sentiment and then an informed decision will be made to see if both CNCC1 and CNCC2 will be required for the exhibition floor. Lee explained that for those who may want to attend Sibos at a smaller scale could opt for a smaller stand but make use of the 110 meeting rooms available.
Another consideration Lee raised was that all attendees will require a visa and attend an appointment at Chinese embassies for their travel to be approved.
Lee advised attendees to apply as soon as possible and although flights and accommodation do not need to be booked to submit the application form, Swift are working with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ensure that the correct documentation is supplied to support the visa process.
A range of international chain hotels and local options are available near the CNCC, but to avoid having to navigate the city on the subway, Sibos buses will be returning, which will also transport delegates to and from the airport.
Sibos is also working with partners to ensure a seamless network architecture and security posture to offer “the same kind of experience that you get at every Sibos.” The team will also be travelling to Beijing in November 2023 to scope out potential venues for social events.
An exhibitor day will also be held on 20th March 2024 for potential exhibitors to get a feel for the venue and the city.
Here are some key milestones:
6th October 2023 – Planning survey due
Late November 2023 – 2024 exhibitor sales start
Early January 2024 – Speaker nomination process starts
16th February 2024 – 2024 exhibitor sales close
20th March 2024 – Exhibitor day in Beijing
Late March 2024 – Sponsorship sales start