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Market Size and Trends

Saudi Arabia meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market is estimated to be valued at USD 2.59 Bn in 2024 and is expected to reach USD 5.49 Bn by 2031, exhibiting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.3% from 2024 to 2031.

Saudi Arabia Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) Market Key Factors

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Saudi Arabia meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market has witnessed significant growth in the recent years, owing to economic diversification initiatives undertaken by the government. Large scale projects around infrastructure, tourism and entertainment attracts significant international and domestic business events. The relaxation of social norms are encouraging social and family gatherings, and this boosts demand for meeting and event spaces. However, ongoing pandemic hampers the market growth although business events are recovering faster as restrictions are being lifted.

Growing domestic tourism sector

The domestic tourism industry in Saudi Arabia has experienced significant growth in recent years supported by the government's initiatives to diversify the economy. This expansion of the tourism sector within the country has served as a major driving factor for the accelerated development of the MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) market as well.  As leisure travel and cultural activities within KSA have risen in popularity aided by reforms such as the lifting of social restrictions and introduction of e-visas, the demand for business events and conferences catering to local audiences has also increased steadily. Several international firms have started shifting their regional events and seminars to cities like Riyadh and Jeddah to capitalize on the growing domestic clientele. Moreover, a large number of government and private organizations are now regularly organizing internal trainings, workshops, product launches and annual meets within the kingdom which has translated to numerous opportunities for local MICE vendors.

Market Concentration and Competitive Landscape

Saudi Arabia Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) Market Concentration By Players

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Government investments in infrastructure and mega-events

The Saudi Arabia government has made massive infrastructure investments in line with its ambitious Vision 2030 development plan. This includes the building of new airports, seaports, rail lines, highways and urban centers. Many such mega-infrastructure projects involve contractors, stakeholders and regulators convening at various stages through their design, planning and construction phases. The hosting of major cultural and sporting events has been prioritized in Vision 2030 as a tool for exposing Saudis and the world to the kingdom's culture, heritage and reforms. Billions have been allocated towards bidding for and organizing international events like the Formula One race, WWE wrestling shows, golf, boxing, international conferences and expos. The requirements of coordination, planning, accommodations and event logistics during these mega-projects and global events create substantial business opportunities for the market. As infrastructure build-out and hosting of international gatherings remain government imperatives, these will drive continuous MICE engagements across project and event management, catering to delegates, staging cultural performances, facilitation and more.

Saudi Arabia Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) Market Key Takeaways From Lead Analyst

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Challenge: Regional geopolitical issues

Saudi Arabia meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market has potential for growth due to the large investments made by the government in tourism infrastructure and events, continues to be held back by ongoing geopolitical tensions and conflicts in the region. As a prominent leader in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia's location makes it vulnerable to instability rippling across borders. Ongoing conflicts like the war in Yemen and tensions with Iran means threats of terrorism and security issues remain higher than desired. This creates uncertainty and deters many international corporations and event organizers from committing to longer term meetings, conferences or exhibitions in the country.  According to the data published by United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, as of May 2022, around 80% of Yemen's population, around 24 million people, require some form of humanitarian or protection assistance due to ongoing conflict. The dire humanitarian situation means regional instability shows no signs of ending soon. This protracted conflict going into its 8th year continues to affect travel sentiment not just regarding Yemen but for the entire Gulf region. Issues like tensions over Iran's nuclear program and other political differences mean threats are always poised to escalate regionally. This unpredictable atmosphere of ongoing unrest threatens the stability required to build Saudi Arabia as a regional MICE hub.

 Opportunity: Untapped regional potential

Saudi Arabia has immense untapped regional potential in the MICE market which can drive future growth of this sector. The country is strategically located in the center of the Middle East and Gulf region, with access to huge regional audience from neighboring countries like UAE, Kuwait, Oman, and others. However, meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market in Saudi heavily relies on domestic and pan-Arab events, with minimal contribution from international events. By leveraging its regional reach, Saudi can attract large international conventions, corporate meetings and exhibitions from surrounding regions.  The regional potential is evident as Saudi has many policy and infrastructure advantages over other competitors. Recent visa reforms have made travel to Saudi much easier for regional travelers. Mega projects like NEOM are positioning the country as the technological and business hub of the region. World class facilities like the Qiddiya entertainment city and planned Oxford Business Park are being developed to international standards. These developments will boost regional cross-border MICE activity in Saudi. For instance, according to the data published by United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Saudi’s non-oil sector GDP can potentially grow by US$ 53 billion by 2030 due to trade, tourism and knowledge-based sectors like healthcare, education, and others.This growth will generate significant regional demand for collaborative events, exhibitions and conferences in Saudi. 

Saudi Arabia Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) Market By Event Type

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Insights, By Event Type: Driven by growing demand for effective communication and knowledge sharing among businesses

In terms of event type, corporate meetings segment is estimated to contribute the 35.6% share of the market in 2024, owing to growing demand from businesses to enhance communication and knowledge sharing. Corporate meetings help foster collaboration through face-to-face interactions. These provide opportunities for business leaders and managers to strategize, review performance, and address issues in an engaging setting. With rapid changes in business environment and competitive landscape, effective internal communication has become critical for organizations. Corporate meetings facilitate real-time discussions and clarity on goals, policies and work processes which boost employees' understanding of their roles and workflows. These encourage networking and brainstorming which stem innovative ideas. Corporate meetings promote bonding among workforce through social interactions which nurtures organizational culture. With rising workload pressures, such engagement-centric platforms play a significant role in employee engagement and motivation.

Insights, By Revenue Source: Driven by Need for Brand Prominence and Lead Generation

In terms of revenue source, delegate registration fees segment is estimated to contribute the 33.5% share of the market in 2024, owing to incentives for both event organizers and participants. For organizers, registration charges serve as primary source of funding to cover event costs and ensure profitability. It provides financial security to plan scale and scope of programs. For participants, especially from corporate and industry, event registration offers opportunities for skill enhancement, networking and knowledge updates from industry experts. It enables them to stay informed of latest trends, gain insights on emerging opportunities and challenges. Given competitive business landscape, events serve as effective platforms for brands to showcase capabilities and unique value propositions to potential clientele. This need fosters higher registration amongst target audience.

Insights, By Enterprise Size: Driven by Access to Specialized Skillsets and Resources

In terms of enterprise size, large enterprises segment is estimated to contribute the 62.4% share of the market in 2024, owing to their ability to leverage scale and invest in specialized resources. Large scale MICE events involve complex planning around various aspects like venue selection, transportation management, catering, accommodation bookings and other logistics. Effective execution of such multi-faceted operations requires dedicated skilled talent as well as financial muscles. Access to large pool of expertise and capitals enables large enterprises to confidently take on high profile national and international events. It helps them to create premium experiences for clients and strengthen customer relationships. Additionally, large enterprises have diverse client and supplier networks that support overseas expansions and global events hosting.

Market Report Scope

Saudi Arabia Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) Market Report Coverage

Report Coverage Details
Base Year: 2023 Market Size in 2024: US$ 2.59 Bn
Historical Data for: 2019 to 2023 Forecast Period: 2024 to 2031
Forecast Period 2024 to 2031 CAGR: 11.3% 2031 Value Projection: US$ 5.49 Bn
Segments covered:
  • By Event Type: Corporate Meetings, Conferences, Exhibitions, Incentive Travels, Others 
  • By Revenue Source: Delegate Registration Fees, Exhibit Space Rental, Sponsorships, Accommodation, Transportation, Others 
  • By Enterprise Size: Large Enterprises, Small & Medium Enterprises 
  • By Industry: Pharmaceuticals, IT & Telecom, Banking, Financial Services and Insurance, Automotive, Construction, Energy & Utilities, Others
Companies covered:

Elegant Events, MICE Arabia, Nadd Al Shiba PR & Event Management, Zahid Travel Group, Cozmo Travel, Al Tayyar Group, General Entertainment Authority, Al Hokair Group, Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, Tetrapylon

Growth Drivers:
  • Growing domestic tourism sector
  • Government investments in infrastructure and mega-events 
Restraints & Challenges:
  • Regional geopolitical issues
  • Limited entertainment options

Key Developments

  • In April 2024, Jewish group launches Holocaust survivor speaker’s bureau to fight increasing antisemitism worldwide
  • In May 2024, Destinations International announced a partnership with the Saudi Tourism Authority, which is investing in and promoting tourism in Saudi Arabia.
  • In November 2022, TCEB announced the launch of its MICE Intelligence Center platform to provide key insights into Thailand's MICE industry. The platform will help monitor industry trends and support stakeholders.
  • In January 2022, Alibaba Group announced the launch of its new Virtual Pavilion to host international trade shows and exhibitions through virtual events on its platform. The launch aims to transform trade shows amidst the pandemic.

*Definition: Saudi Arabia MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) Market involves organizing and hosting business events such as corporate meetings, conferences, seminars, incentive travel programs, recognition events, and major exhibitions/tradeshows. It is a growing market in Saudi Arabia as the government is aggressively promoting tourism and business travel.

Market Segmentation

  • Event Type Insights (Revenue, USD Bn, 2019 - 2031)
    • Corporate Meetings
    • Conferences
    • Exhibitions
    • Incentive Travels
    • Others
  •  Revenue Source Insights (Revenue, USD Bn, 2019 - 2031)
    • Delegate Registration Fees
    • Exhibit Space Rental
    • Sponsorships
    • Accommodation
    • Transportation
    • Others
  •  Enterprise Size Insights (Revenue, USD Bn, 2019 - 2031)
    • Large Enterprises
    • Small & Medium Enterprises
  •  Industry Insights (Revenue, USD Bn, 2019 - 2031)
    • Pharmaceuticals
    • IT & Telecom
    • Banking, Financial Services and Insurance
    • Automotive
    • Construction
    • Energy & Utilities
    • Others
  • Key Players Insights
    • Elegant Events
    • MICE Arabia
    • Nadd Al Shiba PR & Event Management
    • Zahid Travel Group
    • Cozmo Travel
    • Al Tayyar Group
    • General Entertainment Authority
    • Al Hokair Group
    • Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage
    • Tetrapylon

Frequently Asked Questions

The CAGR of Saudi Arabia meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market is projected to be 11.3% from 2024 to 2031.

Growing domestic tourism sector and Government investments in infrastructure and mega-events are the major factors driving the growth Saudi Arabia meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market.

Regional geopolitical issues and Limited entertainment options are the major factors hampering the growth of Saudi Arabia meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) market.

In terms of event type, corporate meetings segment is estimated to dominate the market in 2024.

Elegant Events, MICE Arabia, Nadd Al Shiba PR & Event Management, Zahid Travel Group, Cozmo Travel, Al Tayyar Group, General Entertainment Authority, Al Hokair Group, Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, Tetrapylon are the major players.

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