Glasgow City Marketing Bureau Chief steps down and says the city has “exciting times ahead”

Scott Taylor, the Chief Executive of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB), has announced his decision to step down after a decade leading one of Europe’s most successful destination marketing organisations.

Mr Taylor told that the efforts of his ‘passionate and talented team’ were integral in securing more than £1.2 billion worth of conference business and almost 3,500 conferences to the city over the past 10 years.

Under Mr Taylor’s leadership, GCMB has played a pivotal role in the shaping of Glasgow’s world-leading events strategy and attracting an enviable and diverse portfolio of conventions to the city against global competition.

GCMB reported its best ever conference sales for the past financial year (April 2014 to March 2015), confirming 504 new conventions worth £140 million – almost £2.7 million of new business every week, representing a 3% year-on-year increase.

Meanwhile, earlier this year GCMB was praised alongside Vienna as the top two convention bureaux in Europe by Dr John Heeley, one of the UK’s foremost tourism academics, a visiting fellow at Sheffield Hallam University and director of the website.

In his review entitled ‘Urban destination marketing in contemporary Europe – what does good look like?’, which was published in the International Journal of Tourist Cities in May, he stated: ‘The convention department of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau – alongside Vienna Convention Bureau – is widely acknowledged by conference industry experts and practitioners as the best of its kind in Europe. GCMB knocks the spots off of other UK convention bureaux and its achievements in this field are down to the scale and quality of its marketing and sales operations, undertaken with a trademark city partnerships approach and a real hunger to succeed.’

Looking ahead, GCMB has confirmed significant major events and conference business to Glasgow until 2022 and is bidding for new business as far out as 2026, which will have a substantial, direct and positive impact on the city’s visitor and tourism economy.

Major conference business includes the 2016 Royal College of Nursing Annual Congress; 2016 International Conference on Drug Therapy in HIV; 2016 and 2017 All Energy Exhibition – the largest renewables event in the UK; 2018 European Congress on Emergency Medicine; 2017 British Association of Urological Surgeons Meeting and the 2022 World Congress of Soil Science. These seven meetings alone will bring nearly 30,000 delegates to Glasgow; boosting the city’s economy by almost £40 million.

Mr Taylor said: “I’ve held the Chief Executive position at Glasgow City Marketing Bureau for the past ten years and what a decade it has been. The city has gone above and beyond to compete in a market place which has grown increasingly fierce in order to stand shoulder to shoulder with other world-leading cities.

“The city’s PEOPLE MAKE GLASGOW brand encapsulates the ethos of Glasgow perfectly.

“We take pride in working as a team with a wealth of city-wide businesses to bid for, win and deliver a calendar of major events and conferences. Our approach showcases the city’s strength, its people.

“Glasgow has exciting times ahead continuing to enjoy a boom period in what has undoubtedly become our golden era of tourism. Our strategy will continue to showcase our winning formula; the city’s world-class research, infrastructure and our shining lights, our ambassadors. It is with these credentials that Glasgow will continue to be one of the most forward-thinking, innovative destinations in Europe.”

Annemarie O’Donnell, Chief Executive of Glasgow City Council, said: “Scott has led a team which has delivered successes for Glasgow which would have been unthinkable in the past. Glasgow is now Scotland’s fastest growing tourism destination and between now and Scott stepping down at the end of February we will take steps to ensure we have the structures in place to continue Glasgow City Marketing Bureau’s success.”