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IAAPA Leadership Conference 2018 Brings Together Industry Executives in Osaka and Tokyo, Japan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

IAAPA Leadership Conference 2018 Brings Together
 Industry Executives in Osaka and Tokyo, Japan


More than 170 Attendees Participated in Sold-Out Conference Inspired by the Culture, Geography, and Attractions of Japan

ORLANDO, Fla., US (March 14, 2018) – The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) recently concluded its eighth annual IAAPA Leadership Conference, held for the first time in Japan, March 6-9, 2018. More than 170 top-level attractions industry leaders from 28 countries gathered in Osaka and Tokyo to learn from inspiring keynote speakers, attend forward-thinking education sessions, and experience one-of-a-kind tours through several of Japan’s most popular and unique attractions. 

Conference attendees toured five of the country’s most popular attractions and heard from industry executives who shared insights from Universal Studios Japan – Osaka, Kaiyukan Aquarium, Kabuki-za Theatre, Fuji-Q Highland, and Tokyo DisneySea.

Opening keynote speaker Mike Davis, senior vice president, international entertainment at Universal Parks & Resorts kicked off the conference. Attendees then took part in education sessions that included presentations by Edwin Omura, ambassador for Asia-Pacific at KidZania, and Tomoko Chijiwa, director of human resources at Legoland Japan and Merlin Entertainments Japan. The closing keynote was presented by Andrew Bolstein, vice president and executive managing director at Walt Disney Attractions Japan and Disneyland International.

Plans are already underway for IAAPA Leadership Conference 2019 which will be held in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Detailed information about IAAPA Leadership 2019 will be available on www.IAAPA.org this fall.  

Participant Quotes:

“What I will bring with me from this week is that, in this global industry, the key is always cultural adaptations. We’ve seen some examples of this at a high level this week. It was a joy to meet our Japanese colleagues, and I’m proud to be a part of this association and this industry.” – Andreas Andersen, President and CEO, The Liseberg Group, Sweden

“This Leadership Conference was exceptional. We visited so many diverse attractions in three cities—it’s exciting to go to new areas. We need to reach out, because there are amusement parks everywhere. To come here and show them we value their input into the industry is very valuable to us all.” – Amanda Thompson OBE, Managing Director, Blackpool Pleasure Beach, United Kingdom

“Seeing how attractions operate in Japan was eye-opening for all of us, particularly from the perspective of courtesy and respect to guests. This was an opportunity for us to be more connected to these Japanese attractions, and for them to be more connected to IAAPA.” – David Rosenberg, Vice President, Monterey Bay Aquarium, United States

“It’s been great to meet people—suppliers and operators—and get some fantastic stuff out of it. I’ve met many people this week in a management role, so that’s given me access to people I normally wouldn’t. I had no knowledge of the attractions in Japan, so it’s been great to come here and learn about this vibrant part of our industry.” – Darryl Webb, Owner, Downunderland Amusement Park, Australia

“Every time you visit an attraction there’s something I find to take back home, so I’ve learned several things this week—particularly in customer and cultural service. Coming to Japan demonstrates our commitment to being a truly global association.” – Kyle Allison, Owner, Andy Alligator’s Fun Park, United States

“Any conference that takes you all around a country to half a dozen attractions is beyond expectation. The whole thing was incredibly inspiring to me, as a leader and manager.” – Aaron Glade, Assistant Director, Attraction Operations, Melco Resorts and Entertainment, Macau

“The venues we visited captured the Japanese culture I was looking for. I will take away the camaraderie I built with key people—new people I’d never met before. I also really enjoyed the lectures that occurred prior to visiting these parks—there was a lot of value in that. Sometimes we visit attractions without understanding the history behind how they developed to what they are today. Learning that history was invaluable.” – Jose Lugo, Regional Director, BRPH Architects Engineers, United States

About IAAPA
Celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2018, the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) began as an advocacy office in 1918. Since that time, IAAPA has become the largest international trade association for permanently located attractions dedicated to the preservation and prosperity of the global attractions industry. As a non-profit organization, IAAPA represents more than 5,300 attraction, supplier, and individual members from more than 100 countries. Members include professionals from amusement parks, theme parks, attractions; water parks, resorts; family entertainment centers; zoos, aquariums; science centers, museums; and industry manufacturers and suppliers.

IAAPA helps members improve their efficiency, marketing, safety, and profitability while maintaining the highest possible professional standards in the industry worldwide.

The association's global headquarters is in Orlando, Florida, US. The non-profit organization maintains offices in Brussels, Belgium; Hong Kong, China; Shanghai, China; Mexico City, Mexico, and Alexandria, Virginia, US. To learn more, visit www.IAAPA.org or connect through social media channels: @IAAPAHQ #IAAPA100

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Susan Storey: SStorey@IAAPA.org or +1 321/319-7615
Lesley Harris: LHarris@IAAPA.org or +1 321/319-7616