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APEX Poaching Workgroup Update

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The APEX Workgroup on Room Block Poaching is in the process of analyzing results from its recent planner survey on the prevalence of the issue of "piracy" in the industry. The survey, which closed on April 29, and was open to all meeting professionals in a planner role, is intended to assess the scope and range of impacts of poaching activity experience by planners.  

Among the initial findings:
  • Awareness of poaching activity is widespread – only 7 percent reporting they are unfamiliar with the issue
  • Poaching activity is more common than not – 73 percent of respondents have been affected by poaching at some point
  • The net is cast wide – a broad range of industries and room rates were reported
  • Monetary impacts such as legal fees unexpected attrition and impacted concessions are present, but the most prevalent impacts are less tangible – damage to the event or hosting organization’s brand, reduced attendee satisfaction, and distractions that take planners away from other work.
  • Of the top three tactics for combating poaching, only one was targeted directly at poachers. The top tactics planners reported using were focused on educating and engaging attendees through various communication channels. 
  • There is a preparation gap – Planners are aware of poaching, many have been affected, yet 70 percent reported that their organization does not have proactive policies in place to address poaching.
These preliminary findings will be supported by further analysis and additional research in some areas.  

The APEX Workgroup is using these results to formulate a work plan to deliver resources and information to help individual planners close the preparation gap or build on their toolkit. More information will be released in the coming comings through the Convention Industry Council website at

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