Growth in agency bookings provides increasing revenue for London’s Barbican

Press Release

The Barbican’s business events team has seen agency bookings over the last year increase to 33 per cent, continuing a trend of significant sales growth. While just 1 per cent of bookings were made through agencies in 2015, three years later they provide a third of business sales at the venue. Overall growth in the last year saw Barbican Business Events exceed sales targets by 4 per cent.

“We have seen a real benefit from the commitment we have given to our agency relationships, as it drives new business into the venue,” comments Jackie Boughton, head of business events at the Barbican. “Agencies are a mainstay of the meetings and events industry, they deliver significant events and have helped us go from strength to strength, while allowing us to continually develop our product. Being a world-class arts and events venue means our success gets reinvested, not just in our events offering but across the whole of the centre, including our international arts and learning programme.”

The Barbican’s success in the agency market is partially attributable to their close partnership with the HBAA, whose influence Jackie and the team recognise. “We see true value in the HBAA’s support of both their agency and supplier members. Ultimately they bring us together and help to build relationships. It is a highly respected organization with an influential, engaged membership that provides frequent opportunities for all.”

Juliet Price, consultant executive director for the HBAA comments: “The Barbican’s Business Events team truly recognises the value of the agency sector which delivers around 60 per cent of business placed across the U.K. market, and their team works hard to develop and nurture key relationships. This is a great example of a leading venue that has identified the importance of this vital sales channel and promotes the best practice that our members support. Agencies are the lifeblood of the meetings and events industry and the HBAA is proud to represent them as a whole.”

About Barbican business events

The Barbican is one of the world’s leading conference and international arts venues. Located in the City of London, it is capable of holding meetings from 10-2,000 delegates in its fully equipped concert hall, theatres, conference suites and boardrooms. Barbican business events brings together the venue’s expertise in the arts and corporate meetings.

The Barbican provides a vibrant and inspiring venue for corporate events, conferences, meetings and entertainment. The venue is capable of holding meetings from 10-2,000 delegates in spaces including a concert hall, theatres, a boardroom and conference suites that can accommodate 10-170 delegates and can be adjusted using sound proofed sliding. As part of its wider investment strategy, the Barbican spent £2.2m on a significant refurbishment throughout the Centre in the summer of 2016 including its Frobisher rooms and Level four. The focus of the Frobisher refurbishment is designed to create an even stronger connection between the Centre’s main conference and meeting facilities and its arts spaces.

About the Barbican

A world-class arts and learning organisation, the Barbican pushes the boundaries of all major art forms including dance, film, music, theatre and visual arts. Its creative learning programme further underpins everything it does. Over 1.1 million people attend events annually, hundreds of artists and performers are featured, and more than 300 staff work onsite.

The Barbican is home to Resident Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra; Associate Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra; Associate Ensembles the Academy of Ancient Music and Britten Sinfonia, Associate Producer Serious, and Artistic Partner Create. Our Artistic Associates include Boy Blue, Cheek by Jowl, Deborah Warner, Drum Works and Michael Clark Company. The Los Angeles Philharmonic are the Barbican’s International Orchestral Partner, the Australian Chamber Orchestra are International Associate Ensemble at Milton Court and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra are International Associate Ensemble.

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