Business Events Activity Survey (2009-2019)

The Business Events Activity Survey monitored and benchmarked the performance of more than 300 professional conferencing and meeting venues in New Zealand from 2009 to 2019.

About the survey

The Business Events Activity Survey was the 'supply-side' component of the Business Events Research Programme.

Venues that regularly hosted MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) provided ongoing data on the events they have hosted. Participants included major hotel chains, convention and exhibition centres and boutique venue providers.

The programme was funded by MBIE in partnership with 14 Convention Bureaux in New Zealand — Auckland, Hamilton and Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua, Hawke's Bay, Taupo, Manawatu, Wellington, Marlborough, Nelson, Christchurch and Canterbury, Dunedin, Queenstown and Southland.

Reports and pivot tables

Business Events Activity Survey year to June 2019 report [PDF, 2.6 MB]

Pivot table for year ended June 2019 [XLSX, 548 KB]

Earlier reports

Definition of qualifying venues

On reviewing the venue population in 2012, we agreed with the Convention Bureaux on a definition to be applied retrospectively from the start of the programme.

To qualify for inclusion in the Business Events Activity Survey a venue must:

  • promote their venue as suitable for a range of business-related MICE activities, especially conventions, conferences and meetings
  • have a theatre-style minimum delegate capacity of 50
  • aim or plan to host a minimum of 12 conventions and/or business-related events each year.

We agreed with the Convention Bureaux on the following:

  • venues don't have to be a member of their local bureau to be included
  • venues don't have to agree to submit data to be included
  • the delegate capacity for a venue is defined as the largest number of MICE delegates that can be comfortably hosted at one time in spaces regularly used to host MICE events within the venue. The estimate is based on minimal partitioning, and theatre-style set up of free-form spaces
  • venues are asked to exclude the capacity of spaces used only for non-MICE events, such as concerts and sporting events.

Method for estimating unrecorded MICE activity

We use an imputation methodology (replacing missing data with substituted values) to estimate MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) activity for venues that are included in the Business Events Activity Survey but which are missing some data or haven't supplied data at all.

Method used 2009-2012

Over this period the method of estimating missing data was to apply weighting to the reported regional level data based on the capacity for the region. This weighting was calculated as:

  • The total reported delegate capacity for the region/The delegate capacity of the venues that submitted data.

In general, the calculation produced an average weight of around 1.4 across the 12 Convention Bureaux regions. This meant that the recorded activities (events, delegates, delegate days) were multiplied by 1.4 to estimate the total activity for the region.

Current method

In 2013, the 'nearest neighbour' method was chosen to estimate missing venue data. Under this methodology the events recorded each month by venues are aggregated into quarter years.

If a venue reports for:

  • 1 month in the quarter, those values are taken as representative of the whole quarter
  • 2 months, the missing month is estimated as the average of the other 2.

This quarterly data is then combined with the full list of qualifying venues, so that the dataset includes venues that have:

  • registered with the Business Events Activity Survey and supplied data
  • registered without supplying data
  • not registered.

Imputation uses the nearest neighbour classification to calculate the likely responses, for venues without data or not registered, of the:

  • count of events
  • sum of event days
  • type of event
  • sum of delegate days
  • sum of delegates
  • all the associated subgroups.

The imputed values are the means of the 5 nearest neighbours based on the delegate capacity, region and venue type — as shown in the table below.


Population (across all Bureaux)


  • <101
  • 101-200
  • 201-400
  • 401-1000
  • 1001+


5 strata of regions:

  • Auckland, Wellington
  • Bay of Plenty, Hamilton and Waikato, Hawkes Bay, Manawatu
  • Christchurch and Canterbury, Nelson, Marlborough
  • Dunedin, Queenstown, Southland
  • Rotorua, Taupo

Venue type

  • Hotels
  • Convention/event centres
  • Stadiums/showgrounds
  • Other

Because imputation takes into account this range of information on the characteristics of non-reporting venues, this approach is more appropriate than the previous weighting method for data of this sort.

Last updated: 05 October 2020