Neil Brownlee is the new head of business tourism at VisitScotland. Neil, formerly meetings & incentives manager within the Business Tourism Unit (BTU) team, is tasked with increasing business tourism income to Scotland in the coming years.
Taking over from Caroline Packman, Neil has been with the team for two years and will build on the good work already underway under Caroline’s leadership. He comments: “In my new role, I am delighted to continue working with colleagues in the BTU and with our Scottish industry partners. We have much in the pipeline showcasing the wide array of high quality Scottish venues and service providers to a global audience of meeting and conference planners. Working closely with our industry partners, who represent some of the best hotels, venues and experiences in the world, we are in a good place to sell Scotland to this lucrative market.”
Born and bred in Edinburgh, Neil’s career in the international tourism and marketing industry includes: a business development role at leading global event caterer Sodexo; Director of Sales and Marketing at Rocco Forte’s Balmoral Hotel; and Revenue Development Manager with Le Meridien Hotels in Boston, Massachusetts.
Business Tourism is currently worth £827m a year to Scotland and accounts for 20% of total tourism expenditure, up from 18% in 2008. The BTU is forecasting a further increase in income for the Scottish economy with sights fixed on reaching the £1bn mark.