The City of Nanaimo awarded the contract for management of the Vancouver Island Conference Centre to Spectra by Comcast Spectacor.
According to a press release issued by the city Monday afternoon, Spectra will oversee operation and marketing of the conference centre and provide destination marketing services in collaboration with tourism partners and stakeholders.
The city and the company are expected to agree to the terms of the contract in time for Spectra to begin its management duties on March 20. Atlific, the current management agency at the conference centre, is working to ensure a smooth transition of management responsibilities, according to the city, which is also working with its staff union to provide service continuity, employment opportunities and improve communications.
Spectra was selected after a request for expressions of interest to provide management services for the conference centre was issued in December 2016 following a core services review that examined how to improve services, save money and introduce best practices. The city is asking Spectra to focus on objectives highlighted in the review, including reducing the city’s operating subsidy to the conference centre and increasing economic benefits in the tourism sector.
“We know that to be an economic engine the VICC needs to attract delegates who spend money on hotel rooms, meals and services in Nanaimo,” said Victor Mema, the city’s chief financial officer, in the release. “Going forward with a collaborative strategy that markets Nanaimo’s strengths is critical to economic development in the city. It will require ongoing dialogue with tourism partners and hotels. Spectra has the experience and the expertise to bring these groups together.”