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INZ Major Events to work with events organisers

July 24, 2002

In relation to the release of Sir Thomas Eichelbaum’s report into New Zealand’s loss of the World Cup Rugby hosting rights.

Industry New Zealand Major Events to work with events organisers to create greater national returns

Industry New Zealand Major Events is reaching out to events organisers to work with them to support and further develop major events of national significance.

Industry New Zealand Major Events was set up late last year to work with the events industry, local government, private sector sponsors and arts, sports and business bodies to attract, retain and support appropriate events (manageable within New Zealand’s current resources) and to leverage economic benefits for the country beyond the event itself.

Much of the work in the formative stages involved working with Cabinet and setting up funding infrastructure. Vito Lo Iacono was appointed as head of the unit, Major Events Manager, in January 2002 and is rolling out the programme nationally.

As an additional role, Major Events co-ordinates and acts as a secretariat of a newly formed government events group made up of ministries and agencies with an events focus called the Inter Agency Events Group.

Current members represent:

- Industry New Zealand

- Tourism New Zealand

- Trade New Zealand

- SPARC (Sports and Recreation)

- Creative New Zealand

- Foundation of Research, Science and Technology

- The Ministry of Economic Development

- The Ministry for Culture and Heritage

- Ministry of Tourism

- Te Puni Kokiri (Ministry of Maori Development)

The group was set up to co-ordinate the government’s approach to events, in particular where an event has a cross section of national benefits such as trade, tourism, industry development and creative arts or sports profiling.

The first fully represented inter agency events group meeting took place in February, 2002.

“We structured the relationship with the above entities so information and updates will be co-ordinated in an effective manner whilst still retaining the independent focuses of each organisation, “ says Vito Lo Iacono.

“Industry New Zealand Major Events is in the process of developing an events strategy to identify the real strength of our national resources, the best international events out there to complement them and a game plan for bringing them here to New Zealand.”

“The learning from the World Rugby Cup situation, whilst an expensive one, has done much to create great appreciation of the value such events have, not just to the economy, but also to the national psyche.”

“We are communicating our role of facilitating the relationship between the private sector and the public sector so that event organisers understand the importance of working with us to have access to greater resources in terms of knowledge, experience, where appropriate, funding and, most importantly, to avoid working in isolation.”

Mr Lo Iacono addressed Eventing the Future, the national events marketing conference, on the government’s role in events today at the Sheraton Hotel in Auckland.

Event organisers can register with Industry New Zealand Major Events and apply for funding online at


Vito Lo Iacono, Major Events Manager, Industry New Zealand

Born in Sicily, Vito lo Iacono has worked at management level in Europe, the United States and New Zealand, in a range of related roles ranging from Marketing and Communication to PR and Event Management.

He has worked with large corporations, such as RCA International as Label Manager, Flammini Group (Octagon), Ferruzzi (Il Moro di Venezia America's Cup Challenge 1992, European Basketball Championships, Rome 1991) and has collaborated with the media unit of the Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Games.

Vito has also created, managed and successfully sold many businesses in the Marketing, Sponsorship, Communication and Event Management fields.

Prior to joining Industry NZ, Vito worked with Air New Zealand's international airline for over seven years in various roles including Events Manager, Product Manager and Project Manager for the Major Events portfolio.

About Industry New Zealand

Industry New Zealand is the national economic development agency. It has a key role in delivering the Government’s policy of stimulating economic development by helping competitive businesses, sectors and regions generate sustainable growth.

Industry New Zealand delivers a range of specialist services, including advice, facilitation, brokering and, where necessary, funding to individual businesses, regions and sectors to help them to fulfil their potential. It helps businesspeople and communities identify their strengths and capitalise on their advantages.

Industry New Zealand provides customised help for global companies wanting to locate in New Zealand, as well as assisting industries that will drive our economy in the future to identify and remove roadblocks to their development.

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