GME launch 2A new online portal geared at helping tourism businesses in Glasgow to benefit from major events taking place in the city has been launched today (Thursday, June 20).

Scottish Enterprise and Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB) have developed following consultation with the city’s tourism industry.

The site – which was officially unveiled by projecting it onto Scotland’s largest cinema screen, the Glasgow IMAX – aims to help tourism operators identify and capitalise on business opportunities arising from Glasgow’s hosting of major events, such as the MOBO Awards or the Commonwealth Games.

It has been built to support a broad range of users from front line staff to proprietors and managers across the city’s restaurants, hotels, visitor attractions, retailers, tour operators and the night-time economy such as pubs and clubs.

Glasgow attracts 2.2 million visitors each year who generate £578 million for the local economy with many travelling from across the UK and overseas specifically to attend major events such as Celtic Connections, Glasgow Film Festival, Glasgow International Comedy Festival, Piping Live and the World Pipe Band Championships.

Using, tourism businesses and organisations will have access to real-time market intelligence to help diversify their product offering, target their marketing more effectively, collaborate with like-minded businesses and identify opportunities for driving sales.

A key feature of the site is the events timeline, which provides a comprehensive overview of the city’s major events landscape and allows businesses to view what events are coming to Glasgow and when.

Additionally, tourism operators will be able to tap into training and contract opportunities, learn more about routes to sponsorship and funding support, view case studies of how other companies are preparing to be more responsive to the city’s visitors and connect via the site’s dedicated social media channels – @eventsglasgow on Twitter and the Glasgow Major Events Group on LinkedIn.

However, the site isn’t just for Glasgow’s tourism businesses. It’s also aimed at supporting event organisers, both new and existing.

Specifically, for organisers considering bringing a major event or festival to the city for the first time, the site illustrates Glasgow’s enviable event credentials which, looking ahead, include the 2013 MOBO Awards, the 2014 Commonwealth Games, the 2015 Turner Prize and the 2016 World Irish Dancing Championships not to mention Glasgow’s position as one of the world’s top 10 sporting cities and the first city in the UK to launch a dedicated Major Events Charter.

The site also reflects Glasgow’s significant investment in new infrastructure, with information, web links and contact details available for many of the city’s world-class new venues including the Emirates Arena, Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome and The Hydro.

One of the standout benefits for event organisers is the site’s experiential search capability, which is believed to be the first of its kind in the UK.

Unlike similar websites, which often limit search functionality to venue type or capacity, provides event organisers with the option to search by venue experience with innovative categories such as ‘street and urban’, ‘arty and cool’, ‘pinstripe business’ or ‘glitz and glamour’ helping to articulate each venue’s distinct offering.

Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, said: “The creation of is the result of industry feedback. It’s what the city’s tourism businesses and organisations have told us they need to better engage with major events and it will absolutely be of benefit to them.

“Using this site, businesses will be able to identify and plan for the many opportunities that major events taking place in Glasgow present – from competing for contracts and accessing visitor information to engaging event organisers directly and developing partnerships – all with the aim of improving their bottom line.

“It’s also an innovative resource for event organisers. To our knowledge it’s the first site in the UK that will allow them to select venues based on the experiences they offer and not just how big they are or how many people they can cater for, which we believe will become the new industry standard.

“Glasgow has a strong reputation for winning and delivering major events, and this site will become the industry go-to for anyone interested in successfully growing their events business.”

Sallyann Tindall, Project Manager at Scottish Enterprise, said: “Tourism continues to be a hugely important sector for our economy and an area where Scotland punches above its weight.

“However, we need to maintain this position and capitalise on opportunities for our tourism companies to grow. This new website is vital to providing accurate information for businesses to identify, evaluate and plan for major events in Glasgow, all of which can contribute to their growth ambitions.”

Stephen Breslin, Chief Executive of Glasgow Science Centre, said: “Glasgow’s international profile is on the rise, which is increasingly attracting major events to the city and driving high visitor numbers.

“This site will provide tourism organisations, like Glasgow Science Centre, with valuable knowledge of what is happening in the city so that we can capitalise on new visitor markets and business opportunities. The site is a great resource for the tourism and events industry within Glasgow, especially as we prepare to welcome the Commonwealth Games next year.”

The site has been built by digital agency The Union and is supported by Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, EventScotland, Glasgow Tourism Service Initiative, Business Club Scotland, VisitScotland and Glasgow Life.