EDWARD KOH, executive director at Singapore Exhibition and Convention Bureau, is taking the helm at BestCities Global Alliance – a partnership of 12 conference destinations across five continents.
Koh, who heads SECB’s conventions, meetings and incentive travel division, will be introduced to delegates at IMEX Frankfurt, May 23-25 as BestCities board chair.
He takes over from Kit Lykketoft, director of Copenhagen Convention Bureau. Lykketoft oversaw the addition of two new partner cities – Guadalajara, Mexico, and Dublin, Ireland – during her two-year tenure while also navigating the alliance through the global pandemic.
Koh plans to prioritise knowledge creation and client engagement in the fields of legacy and sustainability while increasing the global impact of meetings events. He will also enhance BestCities’ focus on economic, social and environmental sustainability. This will enable alliance members to offer delegates more responsible ways to meet amid the growing threat of global warming.
“I am delighted to take on the role of BestCities board chair to build on the good work of my predecessors in seizing growth opportunities in the post-pandemic world for our partners and clients,” Koh said.
“With our renewed focus on sustainability as a core value proposition, we aspire to create more responsible impact and leave a lasting legacy on the world.
“We look forward to generating new business insights and possibilities for our partners, especially at the Global Forum in Melbourne next year. We also welcome new partners to join BestCities’ expanding global network as we harness the power of collaboration and community to make a meaningful difference,” he said.
Lykketoft added: “Although the meetings industry was directly impacted by the global pandemic, I’m proud of the team for continuing to build the alliance and further its goal of creating positive impact through business events.
“I have every confidence in passing the baton to Edward, and look forward to the successes and positive forward momentum he will undoubtedly achieve in his new role.”
Julia Swanson, CEO of the Melbourne Convention Bureau, will assume Edward’s vacated role of incoming board chair, and David Noack Perez, director of the Madrid Convention Bureau, will take up the position of board treasurer.
BestCities will host a media breakfast on May 24 at the Hilton Frankfurt City Centre during IMEX.