Bordeaux as a business destination

Hosting optics, robotics, ICT health and aeronautics events, Bordeaux has established itself on the European map as an excellent location for professional and trade events.

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Bordeaux has become a popular European business destination, with a record year in 2017. Business tourism plays a major role in the growth of the city’s tourist trade. This is demonstrated by figures from Bordeaux’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which report that 54% of hotel room bookings are business related.

Bordeaux’s conference facilities go hand in hand with these positive figures, hosting more than 100 conferences (56 International) in 2017, representing 207,000 conference days and generating more than 60 million euros in secondary economic benefits.

Bordeaux also welcomes hundreds of professional events every year, including talks, incentive programmes and business conventions at a national and international level.


Bordeaux’s popularity as a business destination has been boosted with new reception areas such as La Cité du Vin, the MECA, numerous new direct airlines (Manchester, Helsinki, Copenhague, Cologne, Riga…), the arrival of the high-speed train line bringing Bordeaux closer to Paris, and the Metropole’s investment in a new conference facility (an additional hall for the Exhibition Centre). The city’s hotel facilities continue to evolve, with the arrival of major international chains such as the Hilton Garden Inn (166 rooms) and the Radisson Blu (125 rooms) in 2018.

This effect is accentuated by several competitiveness clusters, an extensive aeronautics and space hub, a leading position in optics and lasers, and strong expertise in nano- and biotechnologies, neurosciences, Health ICT, wood, and sustainable construction. Oncology, a health priority in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine regional programme for 2018-2021, has also benefited from major investments. And of course, there are Bordeaux’s academic institutions, catering for 88,000 students and 11,600 researchers. The University of Bordeaux is one of the five “IDEX” (“Initiative d’Excellence”) universities in France, a state-funded programme that aims to develop R&D and internationalization.


Large-scale national and international conventions are regularly held in Bordeaux, most recently the APM Convention (Association Progress Management, 4,000 participants) and the National Lawyers Convention (5,000 participants), two of the largest national conventions in 2017. The city also hosted the 2018 World Congress of French-speaking Nurses, which took place in June (2,000 participants) and the ISMP, Symposium of the Mathematical Programming Society, in July (1,500 participants).

Building on this dynamic programme, Bordeaux has successfully bid for major conferences against cities such as Sydney, Vienna and Barcelona, that include SAE Aerotech (1,700 participants in the aeronautics sector) in 2019, ROBOCUP in 2020 (international robotics competition with 4,000 participants) and the European Conference on Biomaterials in 2021 (1,200 participants).