Qatar Tourism Authority has appointed ELAN Qatar and Fira Barcelona to manage and operate the Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre, which is expected to open its doors to event organizers and delegates before the end of the year.
The much-awaited Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events (MICE) facility was handed over to the consortium in a ceremony, which saw the signing of an agreement between His Excellency Issa bin Mohamed Al Mohannadi, Chairman of QTA, and Mr. Abdelazziz bin Nasser Al Khalifa, Chairman of ELAN, Qatar’s leading media and entertainment company and formerly known as q.media. ELAN and Fira Barcelona won the bid following a competitive tender that included ten of the world’s top venue management companies.
Constructed by Qatari Diar over an area that spans over 90,000 square metres, the facility incorporates five vast, pillar-free halls, each of which can accommodate approximately 3,500 delegates. DECC is a few minutes away from both the Corniche waterfront and many of Qatar’s five-star hotels.
“DECC is set to become one of the most attractive MICE venues in the Middle East, and we are looking forward to working with our partners at ELAN Qatar and Fira Barcelona to transform its massive potential into reality,” commented Hamad Al-Abdan, Director of Exhibitions at QTA. “Our strategy to increase the number of visitors to Qatar by 20% in the next five years places a strong emphasis on MICE as a key factor in achieving this increase. The addition of DECC to Qatar’s venue portfolio will significantly contribute to Qatar’s standing as a globally competitive MICE destination.”
“ELAN Qatar is quickly building a reputation in the region for its expertise in the entertainment industry, running some of the most successful and recognized exhibitions and events in Qatar,” added Jaber Al-Ansari, Chief Executive Officer of ELAN Group. “We’ve partnered with Fira Barcelona, giants in the MICE industry in their own right, to develop and nurture this expertise and together, manage this outstanding venue that will surely affirm Qatar’s position as a leader in the MICE industry.
As of 2015, Qatar’s calendar of events includes 50 annual exhibitions, bringing visitors the latest in everything from medicine and education to real estate and handicrafts. DECC is expected to host its first event in November 2015.