On 30 November, the fourth Foreign Correspondents Meeting was held in the Madrid headquarters of the IE Business School. It was organised by the Leading Brands of Spain Forum, the IE Business School, the news agency Vnews, the Círculo de Corresponsales (Correspondents Circle) and the Asociación de Corresponsales de Prensa Extranjera (Association of Foreign Press Correspondents, ACPE). The event, entitled “”Major events and their impact on a nation’s brand,”” presented the first-hand experience of Spanish cities, such as Madrid, Barcelona and Zaragoza, in the organisation of global events, explaining the benefits gained by the sponsor companies from these events. The meeting was opened with speeches from the Executive Vice-Chairman of ICEX, Ángel Martín Acebes, the Dean of the IE Business School and Vice-Chancellor of IE University, Santiago Íñiguez de Onzoño. In the afternoon there was a round-table discussion chaired by the Director of the IE Business School Urban Management Forum, Gildo Seisdedos. Representatives of Madrid, Barcelona and Zaragoza City Councils, together with the Chairman of the State Agency for Universal Exhibitions, Javier Conde participated in this round-table discussion. The City of Madrid Representative and General Manager of the Madrid Global Office, Ignacio Niño, opened the speeches with a talk that stressed the importance not only of winning the bid for large events but of managing the events successfully and ensuring that they fit in with the city’s characteristics. Enric Casas, from Barcelona City Council, commented on the city’s experience of hosting the 1992 Olympic Games, stressing the significance of the event’s location, the importance of long-term work and the fact that if a city hosts a major event it cannot disregard the well-being and quality of life of its citizens. The first round-table discussion continued with a speech from the spokesperson from the City Hall of Zaragoza, José Carlos Arnal. He spoke about the city’s experience of its International Exposition in 2008 and the legacy that the Expo has left for the city. This session ended with a speech by Javier Conde, Chairman of the State Agency for International Exhibitions, highlighting the promotional possibilities for Spain in the Shanghai Expo 2010. Following this, the second round-table discussion commenced, chaired by the chairman of Vnews, Alberto Goytre. This session was an opportunity for member companies of the Leading Brands of Spain Forum to share their experiences of sponsoring such large-scale events. Firstly, Ángel Villasante, Director of Marketing, Advertising and Brand Management in Respsol, spoke about the company’s experience of sponsoring the World Motorcycling Championship. Juan Ramón Silva Ferrada, General Manager of Institutional Relationships and Corporate Marketing in Acciona, then spoke about sponsoring and participating in Expo 2008 Zaragoza. This was followed by Luis Gómez, Marketing and Brand Management Director of Iberdrola, who spoke about how sponsoring the America’s Cup had improved profits and increased prestige. Finally, Rafael Fernández Alarcón, Director of Sponsorship in Telefónica, briefly talked about the company’s sponsorship policy. The day ended with two brief speeches by Said Ida Hassan, Chairman of the Association of Foreign Press Correspondents (ACPE) and Martin Dahms, Deputy Chairman of the Correspondents Circle. They both gave their views on the previous speeches and offered some general reflections on the situation of foreign press correspondents in Spain.

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