Award-winning adventure-travel pioneer signs up as keynote speaker for World Green Tourism Abu Dhabi, Bruce Poon Tip To Outline Sustainability Case

United Arab Emirates, 7 July 2010 - Bruce Poon Tip, founder of Gap Adventures, the world's largest adventure travel company, will be a key note speaker at the inaugural World Green Tourism Abu Dhabi conference taking place this November at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC) in the capital of the United Arab Emirates.

Canadian Bruce, an award-winning sustainability pioneer, founded Gap Adventures as a 23-year-old in 1990 with two credit cards. His driving force was a desire to create a sustainable travel experience that strived to minimise its environmental impact, to respect local people and cultures, offer economic benefit to local businesses and communities, and provide a memorable experience for travellers while protecting destinations for future generations.

With over 850 employees, Gap Adventures now offers more than 1,000 small group experiences, safaris and expeditions on all seven continents, to more than 100,000 travellers a year.

Now the innovative leader who in 2003 launched the non-profit Planeterra Foundation to make a positive difference to people’s lives is bringing his cause to Abu Dhabi – a destination which keeps sustainability at the core of its development.

"I launched Gap Adventures with the belief that other travellers would share my desire to experience authentic adventures in a responsible and sustainable manner, and I hope that by learning about our journey and success at the Abu Dhabi congress, other industry leaders will also recognise why putting in place measures to make tourism more environmentally and culturally aware can also create growth opportunities. I am looking forward to engaging with the audience in Abu Dhabi given the investment being made in the region’s tourism sector and the particular challenges the industry faces in the Middle East and North Africa," said Bruce.

In recognition of its dedication to ethical business practices and sustainable tourism, Gap Adventures was awarded the 2009 World Savers Award by Condé Nast Traveler magazine, as well as the 2009 Travel and Leisure Global Vision Leadership Award for voluntourism. Bruce Poon Tip has been twice honoured as the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and was recognised as the 2009 Awards of Merit Travel Personality of the Year. He has also been presented with the Global Traders Leadership award for excellence in exporting and international business.

"Securing Bruce as a speaker is something of a coup for World Green Tourism Abu Dhabi and we can look forward to a thought-provoking address," said Ahmed Hussein, Deputy Director General, Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, which is the event's headline sponsor. The inaugural World Green Tourism Abu Dhabi, which will run from November 22-24 and feature an associated exhibition, is designed to provide travel and tourism industry leaders and investors a greater insight into sustainability within the sector and how it can be used to enhance business outcomes. It is being organised by the UAE's Streamline Marketing Group (SMG).

Bruce Poon Tip joins an increasingly powerful speaker platform which includes: Gopinath Parayil, Founder and CEO of India’s leading responsible travel company Blue Yonder; Arnfinn Oines, Social & Environmental Conscience Officer, Six Senses Resorts & Spas and Faith Taylor, VP for Sustainability & Innovation, for Wyndham World, one of the world’s largest hospitality companies and ranked by Fortune magazine amongst the world's 'Most Admired Companies.'

"Bruce Poon Tip is heading what is shaping up to be a stellar speaker platform," said Rick Theobold, Event Director, SMG. "He is a genuine sector pioneer and his insight and experience sums up what this event is all about. Using tourism as one of the key economic diversification drivers lies at the heart of Abu Dhabi's 2030 plan, but this also has to be achieved based on the fundamental principal of environmental sustainability. This is the case across the region and internationally, which is why this event is so vital for global industry leaders and investors."




aeo 2 iaee