‘Mice’ have fully returned

Business.
Business.(Business File photo)

THE meetings, incentives, conference and events (Mice) segment has been making a strong come back since last year.

Alfred Reyes, president of Hotel, Resort and Restaurant Association of Cebu, said Mice has been giving the hotels a good run in business since 2023 even with the absence of some important foreign markets like China, whose outbound travel remains nascent.

The busy Mice activities last year was also a reflection of the vibrant business activities felt across all industries.

Reyes said last year’s number of Mice activities even surpassed the 2019 count.

“We see Mice to continue driving growth for hotel business this year and in the years ahead,” said Reyes, who is also Bai Hotel’s general manager.

Officials of Colliers Philippines are seeing more in-person events organized by property firms, manpower agencies, pharmaceutical companies and travel agencies, and these have been raising the demand for convention centers, function rooms and similar facilities.

Colliers Philippines suggests that hotel developers and operators should assess the future demand for Mice facilities given the segment’s potential for a strong rebound.

“The need for Mice facilities will only expand moving forward,” it said. “This is particularly true for Filipinos that value social interaction. Improving business sentiment and further expansion of local businesses also compel developers to mount more networking events.”

The firm sees Cebu as one of the strong and important destinations for Mice, alongside Clark in Pampanga, Davao and Iloilo.

For these destinations to reap rewards from Mice, it suggested that developing large convention centers near the newly modernized and expanded airports should be explored by property firms.

Mice in Asia Pacific

According to a report published by Allied Research, the Asia Pacific Mice industry is expected to grow by a compound annual growth rate of 8.6 percent to 2025, reaching some US$441.1 billion.

Demand for Mice across Asia Pacific is expected to continue as connectivity and per capita income continues to grow across the region.

The report noted that China and Japan are expected to remain the largest markets, followed by Hong Kong, Macau, Thailand and Singapore in 2024 and beyond.

By 2030, it expects India to enter the ranks of one of the fastest growing Mice markets driven mainly by domestic demand.

“Pricing and ease of access remains a key challenge for organizers, so expect those destinations that can offer both to recover first. Thailand and Malaysia springs to mind,” the said.

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