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South Korea Hosts Memorable, Profound, and Insightful 2019 ICBA Conference

27 Oct, 2019

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The Four Seasons Hotel, in Gwanghwamun, Seoul, South Korea was the venue for the October 2019 ICBA conference. The theme of the conference was ‘Building on our Strengths.’ The two day event included world class speakers, round table discussions and an introduction to South Korean hospitality. This culminated in a whirlwind tour of the ‘Special City’ of Seoul. 49 ICBA Partners from 30 countries attended.

Commenting on the event, James Gu, ICBA Korea said: “As the host country, the Seoul conference was an opportunity to re-discover the ‘One Team’ or ‘One Family’ DNA within the ICBA Partners; something which defines the ICBA and strengthens our global offering to businesses of all sizes and from all sectors each united by their appetite for growth.”

Sophia Kim, ICBA Korea said: “Our discussions get better each year because they build on the momentum and team spirit forged in previous years. This conference was insightful because everyone had a chance to share and discuss their ideas on how we can continue to build on our strengths and implement what we have learnt from one another in our respective businesses. We have the global presence, the knowledge, the expertise, and the professionalism. However, with more new members joining the ICBA we have to ensure that everyone understands at an intuitive level what our One Team philosophy stands for.”

Reflecting on the event Emmanuel Portier, the founder and Chairman of the ICBA said: “European people have heard and read much about the Japanese and Chinese economy booms of many centuries ago; leaving them rightly impressed with their long traditions, history, and performance. It seems our teachers and the media forgot to include South Korea on this podium. South Korea also presents a spectacular human, political and economic success story such that it is now ranked in the top economies worldwide. Our memorable multi national ICBA conference was an opportunity to remind us of the Korean culture which was amply illustrated by our ICBA Korea team being simultaneously humble and proud of what they have achieved; being simultaneously robust on who they are and open to different cultures; being simultaneously poetic and creative and also very efficient professionally. The ICBA is one team, with one lovely Korean team. Part of our past for many years, an active part of our present as demonstrated by our meeting in Seoul, and more than ever, part of our future.”

Comments from ICBA Partners included:

Andy Moylan, ICBA UK
The ICBA conference in South Korea was one of the best conferences I have had the pleasure of attending. The organisation and the professionalism of the hotel staff and ICBA South Korea was first class. Listening and learning in what is a changing and challenging global environment was worth the investment in time. I fully intend to implement a number of great ideas gleaned from the conference for the benefit of our clients.

Peter Szentirmay, ICBA Hungary
The ICBA conference in Seoul was a great event, perfectly organised. I enjoyed the country; the people are friendly and your kitchen fantastic. However the jazz club on Wednesday night was the peak… 🙂 Well done!

Daniel Zuleta, ICBA Mexico
The ICBA conference in South Korea I think exceeded the expectations of all Partners for the excellent organization and especially for the reception the hosts gave us.

It was certainly a great experience that allowed us to get to know a completely different culture from what we’re used to in the West, with food and spectacular landscapes but above all with excellent company. I think this is another step to work hand in hand with colleagues.

Vlad Stoichitescu, ICBA Romania
A special thank you to our hosts – James, Sophia and Raymond – who went above and beyond to make everybody feel at ease with the different tastes and flavor of the Korean culture. We left the conference with valuable knowledge and ideas that we can implement locally and we are looking forward to the next opportunities.

Tomas Jandera, ICBA Czech Republic
The ICBA conference in South Korea was the first annual meeting for ICBA Czechia & Slovakia. We appreciated its structure, the topics and warm atmosphere during the conference and accompanying evening actions. Face-to-face meetings with other Partners will enable us to provide better service to our mutual clients.
We especially appreciate the exchange of experience in commercial supplementary insurance (CAP limits) and the view on performance of insurance companies in different countries of the world. Very interesting also were the aggregate statistics of Trade Credit Insurance market created by ICBA members.

Kei Kodama, ICBA Japan
It was great to meet and exchange experiences and ideas with ICBA Partners from all over the world. The city of Seoul is wonderful and exciting, and we enjoyed the wonderful Korean food. Although we are neighbors, our culture and history is different, but I believe that Korea, China and Japan can work together towards peace and prosperity with the ICBA as an example we are One Team.

Marcelo Nuñez, ICBA Argentina
Thanks for the great conference. The entire organization was excellent.
From my point of view, this experience was like a “bridge” to get to know Korean culture. In addition, it was great to meet and exchange ideas with our Partners.

Simon Chown, ICBA Australia
Whilst verging on veteran status as an ICBA Partner attending many different conferences in many member countries, the conference in Seoul not only matched expectations, it exceeded them in many ways. To meet with ICBA Partners old and new creates a great sense of camaraderie and delivers business outcomes that develop into great mutual opportunities and great friendships as well as educating on different approaches, market variations, bright ideas; all achieved in great surroundings.

Very much an unknown, the exposure to South Korea was quite humbling. Polite, considerate and kind are a few of the words to describe the people, along with honest and, without question, hard working and “fun”. The rich history we discovered only enhanced this experience and the glance into this unique culture was enlightening.

Sophia, James and Raymond the hosts made sure all the delegates were exceptionally well looked after and made it a memorable meeting.

Jessica Liu, ICBA Taiwan
Thank you for the professional arrangement and warm hospitality from ICBA Korea. We feel proactive discussions and good communications as well as experiences sharing between members are the best part of the conference. It’s quite helpful to build up ICBA’s strengths and to face the future challenges. Look forward to the future opportunities and collaborations with ICBA members.

Danilo Potenza, ICBA Italy
Great meeting here in Seoul at the annual ICBA conference! Many thanks to our host for the great organization! Let me add that it was really a pleasure to experience the Korean atmosphere, which is a mix of tradition, culture and technology. You can really feel how proud you are about what you have achieved in the last 60 years. I visited the War Museum: Korea was really destroyed in 1953 after the war and it is impressing how big and developed your country is now.

William Pu, ICBA China
The conference at Seoul was amazing. It is the first time for Jiang Tai to attend a global conference after officially joining the ICBA. The conference was well organized and facilities were excellent. It was also the first time for me to travel to Korea and the authentic Korean food was attractive. I was impressed by the members who work together as a real family as many people / families know each other for long time. It is great to build up this kind of relationships as it will build up the trust which results in a real one global team. It is honor for Jiang Tai and me in person to become one member of this family.

Carolyn Nephew, ICBA Canada
The ICBA conference in South Korea gave us a profound appreciation of your culture and hospitality. The conference content was educational and thought provoking. It was a real pleasure to participate in the event and to continue to work with the ICBA Family as One Team! Yes and Gangnam lives on!

Nicolás Williams, ICBA Chile
This was our first ICBA Conference. And it was incredible. The hotel, the food, the presentations and specially the organization was amazing. Congratulations!
We love South Korea and Seoul – beautiful architecture; a modern and beautiful city, with a lot to see and do.

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