PR: Offices in Russia & Scandinavia

Contacts: Kimberly Spell, NYC & Company, 212-484-1247,
Chris Heywood, NYC & Company, 212-484-5458,


New York City Becomes First U.S. City to Launch
Tourism Offices in These Regions

Moscow, Russia (March 22, 2007)—In an unprecedented level of outreach for a municipal tourism organization, NYC & Company this week opened offices in Moscow, Russia, and Stockholm, Sweden. The new offices carry the organization's presence further into Europe and Asia than ever before, and set New York City apart as the only U.S. city to open tourism offices in these countries.

The launch of the Stockholm office, which serves Finland and the Scandinavian countries of Denmark, Norway and Sweden, was marked with a formal event in Stockholm on Tuesday, March 20. The Moscow opening is being celebrated today, March 22, against the backdrop of the Moscow International Travel and Tourism exhibition (MITT); the premier Russian travel and trade fair takes place March 21 to 24.

"There is no better time to establish a presence in these lucrative international markets," said George Fertitta, CEO of NYC & Company. "Research has shown that there's been an uptick in the number of visitors traveling to New York City from these regions, and we are poised to capitalize on that positive trend."

This year marks the first time NYC & Company is hosting booths both at MITT and the Swedish International Travel & Tourism Trade Fair (TUR), the leading industry fair for Scandinavia. The TUR schedule overlaps MITT, with dates from March 22 to 25 in Göteborg, Sweden.

The Moscow and Stockholm offices are among the latest of NYC & Company's overseas locations to open, and are part of an ambitious campaign to expand its global network and boost international travel to New York City—ultimately achieving Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's goal of attracting 50 million visitors per year by 2015. Other additions since Jan. 1 include offices in Madrid, Spain, and Amsterdam, serving the Benelux countries of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. NYC & Company has contracted Aviareps Mangum, a noted tourism and airline marketing firm, to represent the city in these regions.

The newly combined tourism, events and marketing organization now has a total of 11 offices serving 19 countries. Its other locations are in Mexico, Argentina, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany and Italy.

New York City welcomes more overseas visitors than any other destination in the United States, with a 27% market share and more flights from Europe than any other market. New York City is also a top destination for visitors from Russia, Finland and Scandinavia in particular, and a closer look at trends within each market shows tremendous growth potential.

Travel to New York City from Russia, for example, has been on the rise for some time, with the city garnering a 54% share of all Russian travel in 2005. That year also saw a 24.3% increase in the number of visitors, up to 46,000 from the year before. In general these visitors stay an average of 11.8 nights and primarily take advantage of the city's shopping and restaurants; sightseeing opportunities at the city's historic places also top their itineraries.

Travel from Scandinavia and Finland is also growing, with New York City garnering a 45% share of all Swedish travel in 2005, a number that closely mirrors the larger, combined regional market. This represents a significant increase over past years, when the Swedish market share ran closer to 25% or 30%. In general, visitors from Finland and Scandinavia stay an average of 5.5 nights and primarily take advantage of the city's shopping and restaurants.

The growth in international travel reflects the overall trend in New York City's travel and tourism industry. The number of visitors to the city has steadily increased since 2002, and is projected to hit a record 44 million visitors in 2006.

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About NYC & Company:
NYC & Company is the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide.