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Jetting down to business Scotland first for Virgin Atlantic Conference

NEARLY 200 members of Virgin Atlantic'€™s global team will be jetting into Edinburgh this week as the airline'€™s Sales and Marketing Conference comes to Scotland for the very first time.

Virgin Atlantic staff from as far afield as India, Hong Kong, Australia, South Africa, Dubai and Japan will be at the event, which is being held at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre tomorrow (Wednesday 22 January).

Supported by VisitScotland, Marketing Edinburgh and Edinburgh Airport, which last year welcomed the launch of Virgin Atlantic'€™s Little Red service, the conference will give the company'€™s sales and marketing staff the chance to meet up and reflect on 2013 as well as focus on campaigns for the year ahead.

They will share ideas and also be treated to a talk by world renowned motivational speaker Jim Lawless, Chief Executive of the Velocity Association and author of Taming Tigers: Do Things You Never Thought You Could.

Tonight (Tuesday), ahead of the conference, delegates will take part in a high-tech "Explore Edinburgh Challenge", where they will use iPads to uncover some of the secrets of the Royal Mile while, on Wednesday night, they will attend a drinks reception and dinner at The Hub.

Neil Brownlee, the Head of VisitScotland's Business Tourism Unit who will be among the speakers on Wednesday, said: "This conference is further testament to Scotland'€™s reputation as a world-class destination for conferences and events - a country that offers a unique combination of scenery, culture and cutting-edge technology. In terms of Business Tourism, it is great to kick-start the year that Scotland welcomes the world with such a prestigious conference and I am sure that staff at Virgin Atlantic will enjoy a memorable event in Edinburgh."

John Donnelly, Chief Executive of Marketing Edinburgh said: "We are thrilled to welcome Virgin Atlantic'€™s international team to the Capital for what we'€™re sure will be a tremendously successful event. The city has a strong track record in delivering hundreds of successful conferences and events each year, ranging from science and medicine to travel and technology. To be the destination of choice for a high profile brand such as Virgin Atlantic, reinforces Edinburgh'€™s global reputation as one of the most beautiful and inspiring business destinations in the world, second only to London as the most popular UK city for international conferences."

Louise Andrew, Head of Sales and Marketing at the EICC, said: "Less than six months since Virgin Atlantic Little Red became our first venue sponsor during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, we are delighted to support this event that brings the international carrier'€™s leading sales professionals together. Looking forward, Virgin Atlantic and its codeshare partners around the world have never been better positioned to bring growing numbers of business tourists to our city."

Gordon Dewar, Chief Executive of Edinburgh Airport, said: "It'€™s fantastic that the iconic Virgin Atlantic brand is now firmly part of the Edinburgh Airport network. 2013 was a record-breaking year for our airport and we'€™re delighted that Virgin Atlantic Little Red has been part of this.

"Not only can we now provide our frequent business travellers with even more choice of services to London, but leisure passengers can also take advantage of the amazing onward connectivity options to destinations around the world.

"Virgin Atlantic Little Red have enjoyed a successful year at Edinburgh Airport and, as we look to the future, we'€™ll continue to work closely to ensure our passengers experience the best.

"With the world'€™s eyes firmly focused on Scotland in 2014, we'€™re pleased to welcome the team from Virgin Atlantic to experience all that Edinburgh has to offer and see for themselves that our amazing city is truly where Scotland meets the world."

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