Glasgow’s City Halls and Old Fruitmarket are to be transformed into a hub to celebrate Scotland’s sporting success, culture and business potential during the Commonwealth Games.
The hub will host a range of events to capitalise on the Games and exploit the international and domestic business opportunities presented by Scotland hosting the Games.
The ‘House’ concept is a major part of every Commonwealth Games. There have been similar Scotland bases across the world, including in Delhi in 2010, and are designed to create the best welcome ever for athletes and their families, the public and key business people as well as celebrate the success of Team Scotland medal winners.
Scotland House will be open from July 21 to August 3 and is a partnership between Commonwealth Games Scotland, the Scottish Government, sportscotland, Glasgow City Council, VisitScotland, Scottish Enterprise and Creative Scotland - with each partner contributing equally to the approx. £500,000 budget.
Scotland House will also include a private space for Team Scotland athletes and their families to meet and for post competition media activity. Next door, the Fruitmarket will be operated by Festival 2014 with an exciting programme of public events planned. Team Scotland events such as the Flag Bearer Ceremony, Queen’s Baton Relay, medallists’ nights and the Team Scotland closing celebration are already planned, while a range of business events, meetings and other activity will also be held there to ensure that business opportunities are maximised.
The Scotland House business programme is designed to connect companies across Scotland with new international market opportunities in commonwealth countries. A series of targeted events are planned to showcase Scotland and Glasgow’s strengths and expertise across a range of sectors.
These national sectors include life sciences, food and drink, textiles, low carbon industries, engineering, design and manufacturing, financial and business services as well as tourism and events, and higher and further education.
Partners including Scottish Enterprise, VisitScotland, EventScotland, Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce and Glasgow City Marketing Bureau will host a range of business to business events during Games time.
Michael Cavanagh, Chairman of Commonwealth Games Scotland, said:
“We are delighted that such a range of influential partners have come together to support Team Scotland through the delivery of Scotland House and build on the successful formula developed by Commonwealth Games Scotland over the last four Games.
“Scotland House will provide that vital safe haven for the athletes and their family and friends and be the focal point for team sponsors and supporters to celebrate Scottish participation and success. With the added strategic cultural and business engagement opportunities which are being built into the programme, Scotland House will be the perfect showcase for all that is great about Scotland and the Commonwealth Games. It will undoubtedly be the place to be this summer!”
Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said:
“2014 is the year that Scotland welcomes the world with the country taking centre stage. Scotland House will be the place to be during the Games and give us the opportunity to put the spotlight on Glasgow and Scotland like never before.”
Lena Wilson, Chief Executive of Scottish Enterprise, said:
“Our extensive programme of business events at Scotland House will showcase some of our country's most exciting sectors and companies to an international audience. We want to connect Scottish businesses with new and emerging international commonwealth markets, opening up new avenues for growth and collaboration.
“During 2014, we have an unparalleled opportunity to build a long-term international trade and investment legacy for our economy through a host of exciting business activity that we, and our partners, will deliver.”
Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council and chair of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, said:
“We look forward to working closely with our partners in Scotland House to celebrate both the success of our athletes and Glasgow and Scotland’s many economic and cultural strengths. The Glasgow Business Embassy within Scotland House will allow local firms and organisations to make the most of this once-in-a-generation opportunity to connect with overseas markets including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore and Jamaica, promoting the fantastic opportunities in the city to a global audience.”
Commonwealth Games Minister Shona Robison said:
“Scotland is ready to host what will be the greatest Games ever. This will be the biggest sporting and cultural event Scotland has hosted and this Government and our partners are determined to maximise benefits beyond 2014.
“This Government is determined to exploit the economic opportunities of the Games and to leave a lasting sporting, social and business legacy. Scotland House will be a great venue for locals and visitors to get a warm Scottish welcome and to soak up the atmosphere of the Games.
“Everyone has a role in making Scotland shine even brighter in 2014. Scotland House will support our work to show the world that Scotland is a great place to live, work and invest by hosting an invigorating programme of formal and informal events to strengthen business and cultural links, connect our companies with new markets and business growth opportunities, and to leave a lasting Games legacy for Glasgow and Scotland.”