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ATA announces introduction of new marketplace

The Africa Travel Association (ATA) announced today that it will introduce a marketplace for buyers and sellers specializing in Africa at the upcoming 34th Annual Congress in Cairo, Egypt on Tuesday, May 19, 2009. Titled African Bazaar, the marketplace provides a forum for travel trade buyers and sellers to sign up for pre-scheduled, one-on-one appointments devoted to networking and building business linkages. “A marketplace is the most efficient way for the buyers in the travel industry to really discover the wonderful products of Africa, said Bob Whitley, President of the United States Tour Operators Association (US-TOA). “The one-on-one meetings can result in creating new business for all.”

Suppliers and buyers will have the chance to meet a targeted 24 experts, including hoteliers, airlines, destination marketing companies (DMC’s), ground handlers, tour operators, and wholesalers, for 15-minute appointments during the morning and afternoon sessions.

“This is a well-tested and proven format for building business linkages between travel professionals,” said Edward Bergman, ATA Executive Director. “No more chance meetings and missed opportunities. This will be strictly by appointment only and will provide all stakeholders in the future of African tourism with an opportunity to meet.”

In addition to introducing the African Bazaar at this year’s congress, ATA will also host the first ATA Tourism Ministers’ Roundtable on Monday, May 18. This networking event aims to facilitate direct communication between congress delegates and tourism ministers in three separate one-hour long discussions.