Nashville Hosts American Bus Association Marketplace for Record Sixth Time Jan. 11-15 at Music City Center
Meeting will generate new business in Music City
Nashville, Tenn. – More than 3,500 motorcoach operators, tour operators and travel and tour industry professionals will descend upon Nashville for the American Bus Association’s 36th annual Marketplace January 11-15. The event marks a record sixth time that Music City has hosted the group, which represents an $855 billion industry and locally accounts for almost 200,000 hotel room nights and approximately 15 percent of the city’s annual business.
“This is considered one of the ‘Super Bowl’ events in the industry, as it has the potential to result in millions of dollars of new business to the city,” said Butch Spyridon, president and CEO of the NCVC. “Motorcoach travel is just as critical for Nashville as convention and leisure business in terms of occupancy, average rate, employment and sales tax revenue, and hosting ABA will dramatically impact the city’s group tourism sales over the next five years.”
At Marketplace, delegates will have more than 100,000 face-to-face appointments and book hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of business to destinations, attractions and hotels in the U.S. and Canada. According to the U.S. Travel Association, direct travel spending by domestic and international travelers grew 5.3% to $855 billion in 2012. Motorcoach travel ranks as the second-most-utilized form of public intercity transportation, just behind airline travel.
“The American Bus Association's Marketplace is pleased to be back in Nashville for the sixth time and this year downtown, at the new Music City Center,” said Peter Pantuso, president and CEO of ABA. “We know the more than 3,500 people who will be attending are very excited about coming to this great city. We thank our partners in Nashville, including the NCVC and the many others for all of the great work they have done.”
More than 235 volunteers from across Nashville’s hospitality industry will be on hand to welcome delegates at the airport and host information booths at each of the 12 host hotels and the Music City Center. Delegates will take advantage of one of the 12 different Nashville sightseeing tours and special events showcasing Nashville’s unique music scene, including an event at the Country Music Hall of Fame featuring performances by Martina McBride and Phil Vassar and a special “Night at the Grand Ole Opry” featuring Darius Rucker, Alison Kraus, Old Crow Medicine Show and Larry Gatlin.
Nashville-based Thistle Farms, a beloved social enterprise of women who have survived lives of prostitution, trafficking and addition, will benefit directly from ABA’s meeting through the “Marketplace Gives Back” program. To raise funds and awareness, the delegates are invited to attend a songwriters showcase, “Heroes Behind The Hits,” featuring Marcus Hummon, Gordon Kennedy and Jeffrey Steele. In addition, Thistle Farms founder Becca Stevens will serve as keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony on Sunday, Jan. 12.
Media is welcome to attend the following Marketplace events:
• Opening Ceremony at the Music City Center at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 12. The event will feature the Fisk Jubilee Singers, Lennon and Maisy Stella (the real-life sisters who play Connie Britton’s daughters on “Nashville”) and songwriter Marcus Hummon
• Marketplace Floor open 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Sunday, Jan 12 through Wednesday, Jan. 15
• “State of the Industry” news conference at the media booth on the Marketplace floor at the MCC at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 14
• A media booth will be set up on the trade floor of the MCC with news releases, contact information and more.
• Interviews with both NCVC and ABA staff are available upon request. Please contact Jenny Steuber if you would like to attend any part of ABA Marketplace and/or have interview requests. firstname.lastname@example.org and 615-686-3112
The Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp
The mission of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp is to maximize the economic contribution of the convention and tourism industry to the community by developing and marketing Nashville as a premier destination. Visit the NCVC’s website at www.visitmusiccity.com.
American Bus Association
The American Bus Association (ABA) is the trade organization of the intercity bus industry with more than 1,000 motorcoach and tour company members in the United States and Canada. Its members operate charter, tour, regular route, airport express, special operations and contract services. Another 2,800 members are travel and tourism organizations and suppliers of bus products and services who work in partnership with the North American motorcoach industry.
Thistle Farms is the social enterprise that is run by the women of Magdalene. By hand, the women create natural bath and body products that are as good for the earth as they are for the body. Purchases of Thistle Farms products directly benefit the women by whom they were made.