Day 1
February 29, 2016


Registration opens

08:00 – 08:30

Breakfast and networking in Exhibition Area

08:30 – 08:40

Conference Welcome

Viktoría Sveinsdóttir, Founder and CEO, Iceland Tourism Investment Conference & Exhibition

08:40 – 09:40

Present and Future of the Icelandic Tourism Industry


  • Birna Einarsdóttir, CEO, Íslandsbanki


  • Bjarnólfur Lárusson, Business Manager Corporate Banking, Íslandsbanki
  • Ingólfur Bender, Chief Economist and Head of Research, Íslandsbanki

Panel Moderator:

  • Björn Berg Gunnarsson, Director at Íslandsbanki and VÍB Wealth Management


  • Björn Óli Hauksson, Managing Director, Isavia
  • Magnea Þórey Hjálmarsdóttir, CEO, Icelandair Hotels
  • Steingrímur Birgisson, CEO, Bílaleiga Akureyrar – Höldur
  • Vilhelm Már Þorsteinsson, Managing Director Corporate Banking, Íslandsbanki


Formal Opening of Exhibition
Eyri Exhibition Hall

  • Ragnheiður Elín Árnadóttir, Minister of Industry and Commerce

09:40 – 10:00

Coffee and Networking in Exhibition Area

10:00 – 10:40

The Global Perspective. How do Trends Globally compare with the Icelandic Tourism Industry?


  • Magnús Orri Schram, Associate Partner, Capacent


  • Michael Widmann, Managing Director, PKF Hotelexperts GmbH – Five Major Hospitality & Tourism Trends – and how Iceland can take advantage of them
  • Raj Chandnani, Vice President, WATG Architects & Wimberly Interiors – The Next Generation Hotels
  • Robin Rossman, Managing Director, STR Global – The Global Numbers

10:40 – 11:20

Tourism and The Sharing Economy


  • Hrannar Pétursson, Communication Strategist


  • Regina Bjarnadóttir, Executive Director Aurora Foundation – The Macro-Economic Impact of the growing Sharing Economy
  • Nicco Mele, Senior Vice President and Deputy Publisher at LA Times – Technology‘s Impact on Tourism – How Tech is changing both consumer and seller behaviors

11:20 – 12:00

Development issues in a broadening Icelandic hotel industry


  • Terence Baker, Head of the European Office for Hotel News Now


  • Margrét Ásgeirsdóttir, Owner & Developer of ODDSSON Hostel
  • Unnar Bergþórsson, Manager, Hótel Húsafell
  • Ásdís Halla Bragadóttir, Owner of Hotel Island & Developer of Klíníkin Medical Clinic

12:00 – 12:15

City of Reykjavik – Investment Opportunities

Exclusive introduction to new hotel investment opportunities in Reykjavik.

  • Dagur B. Eggertsson, Mayor of Reykjavik

12:15 – 13:00

Lunch and Networking in Exhibition Area

13:00 – 13:50

The Airlines Role in the Success of Tourism Development in Iceland


  • John Strickland, Director of JLS Consulting


  • Ali Gayward, UK Commercial Manager/Head of Iceland, EasyJet
  • Christine Kennedy, Network Planning and Global Partnership Development, Delta Air Lines
  • Daníel Snæbjörnsson, Vice President of Network & Planning, WOW air
  • Guðmundur Óskarsson, Director Marketing and Business Development, Icelandair

13:50 – 14:20

Key Note Presentation: Global Trends Of Luxury Hospitality & Tourism Policy Case Studies


  • Gerard J. Inzerillo, CEO of Forbes Travel Guide

14:20 – 15:00

The Icelandic Tourism Industry and the Stock Exchange


  • Auður Ýr Helgadóttir, Partner, LOCAL lögmenn


  • Kolbrún Jónsdóttir, CEO, Kjölfesta
  • Páll Harðarson, CEO, Nasdaq Iceland


  • Davíð Ólafsson, COO, Íslandshótel
  • Jón Þór Gunnarsson, CEO/Owner, Arctic Adventures
  • Kristján Daníelsson, Managing Director, Reykjavik Excursions

15:00 – 15:20

Coffee and Networking in Exhibition Area

15:20 – 16:00

The Growing Cruise Industry in Iceland


  • Eva Michelsen, CEO, Cruise Iceland


  • Ágúst Ágústsson, Chairman, Cruise Iceland – Future Prospects for The Next 10 years
  • Gunnar Rafn Birgisson, CEO & Owner, Atlantik – Economic Impact
  • Sigríður Eysteinsdóttir, General Manager, Iceland ProCruises – Cruising around Iceland – New Product

16:00 – 16:40

New Lines of Business

The popularity of Iceland as a destination is through the roof. The economic meltdown fueled an onslaught of local innovation based on global thinking. Both play a key role in the current reform of the Icelandic economy. Will understanding the importance of innovation in the travel industry through support and creative thinking happen soon enough to maintain growth and help win new markets?


  • Hulda Bjarnadóttir, Director of International Division, Iceland Chamber of Commerce


  • Daddi Guðbergsson, Head of Marketing, Gray Line Iceland
  • Hilmar Halldórsson, CEO & Founder, TripCreator
  • Sverrir Guðmundsson, Owner, Galaxy Pod Hostel
  • Sverrir Þorsteinsson, Owner and CEO Happy Campers

16:40 – 16:50

Get Energized by Ari Eldjárn, Comedian

16:50 – 18:00

Opening Night Networking Reception; Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres

Day 2
March 1, 2016


Registration opens

08:00 – 09:00

Breakfast and networking in Exhibition Area

09:00 – 09:40

The CEO´s Check-in!


  • Þorbjörn Þórðarson, Journalist and Lawyer


  • Björgólfur Jóhannsson, President & CEO, Icelandair Group
  • Elín Sigurðardóttir, CEO, Icelandic Mountain Guides
  • Grímur Sæmundsen, CEO, Blue Lagoon
  • Ólafur Torfason, Chairman & CEO, Íslandshótel

09:40 – 10:25

Online Distribution


  • Peter O´Connor, Professor of Information Systems and Director of the Global MBA and MBA in Hospitality Management, ESSEC Business School


  • Catarina Randow, Vice President Revenue & Distribution, First Hotels (soft branding on Alda Hotel Reykjavik)
  • Maru E. Aleman, Revenue Manager, Keahotels
  • Rúna Ragnarsdóttir, Market Manager, Expedia
  • Sara Kristófersdóttir McGuinness, Director of Sales & Marketing, CenterHotels
  • Yahya Fetchati, COO, Bookassist

10:25 – 10:40

Coffee and Networking in Exhibition Area

10:40 – 11:10

The Global Investor and the Icelandic Hotel Market – Operator Leases vs Management Contract Structures


  • Felicity Black-Roberts, Senior Director Acquisitions & Development Europe, Africa & Middle East, Starwood Hotels & Resorts


  • George Nicholas, Global Head of Hotels, Savills


  • Trond Sejersted Bødtker, Partner at Heilo Eiendom

11:10 – 11:50

Hotels! Operations, Sales & Marketing

The Reykjavik and Icelandic hotel market has been booming the last couple of years. Where does the strong growth come from? Who is visiting and why? Is the growth sustainable or is there a risk that we are seeing a temporary peak? Are there any obstacles or bottlenecks that could jeopardize an otherwise solid increase in visitor numbers?


  • Johan Johander, Owner/Partner and Head of Research, Benchmarking Alliance


  • Ásmundur Sævarsson, Director of Sales & Marketing, Íslandshótel
  • Ester Björnsdóttir, Sales & Marketing Manager, Keahotels
  • Hildur Ómarsdóttir, Director – Marketing and Business Development, Icelandair Hotels
  • Ingibjörg Ólafsdóttir, General Manager Radisson Hótel Saga

11:50 – 12:15

Quality and Corporate Responsibility


  • Skapti Örn Ólafsson, Director of Public Relations, Icelandic Travel Industry Association (SAF)

Micro Presentations:

  • Ólöf Ýrr Atladóttir, Director General, Icelandic Tourist Board – Vakinn, the quality and environmental system for Icelandic tourism
  • Ásta Kristín Sigurjónsdóttir, Cluster Manager for the Iceland Tourism Cluster Initiative – Corporate responsibility and the Icelandic tourism industry

12:15 – 13:00

Lunch in Exhibition Area

13:00 – 14:00

Adventure Tourism – Into the Adventure


  • Hjálmar Árnason, Managing Director, Keilir Atlantic Center of Excellence


  • Gabriel Cote Valiquette, Thompson Rivers University and Keilir Atlantic Center of Excellence


  • Birgir Ómar Haraldsson, CEO, Norðurflug
  • Jón Ólafur Magnússon, CEO, HL Adventures
  • Jorunn Jonsdottir, Owner, All Iceland
  • Kormákur Hermannsson, Owner, Iceland Expeditions
  • Ragnar Þór Þrastarson, Co-Founder and Guide, Asgard Beyond
  • Sigurður Skarphéðinsson, Managing Director, Into The Glacier
  • Vilborg Arna Gissurardóttir, Pioneering Adventure Tourist

14:00 – 14:40

The Icelandic Luxury Experience

Discussion about the necessary investments and infrastructure needed to develop the Icelandic Luxury Experience for visitors. Focus on marketing, training and customer service. What have we learned so far? What are our strengths and weaknesses? What kind of luxury experience can we provide and are there some untapped opportunities?


  • Birna Bragadóttir, Associate Partner, Capacent
  • Rannveig Eir Einarsdóttir, Entrepreneur


  • Dagný Hrönn Pétursdóttir, Managing Director, Blue Lagoon
  • Guðmundur Arason, CEO, Securitas
  • Hörður Gunnarsson, Managing Director Iceland Travel and Nine Worlds
  • Karl Ólafsson, Co-Founder, Nordic Luxury
  • Þorsteinn Örn Guðmundsson, Managing Director, Meet in Reykjavik and Iceland Luxury

14:40 – 15:00

Coffee and Networking in Exhibition Area

15:00 – 15:40

Access to Capital – Financing in the Tourism Industry


  • Áslaug Gunnlaugsdóttir, Partner, LOCAL lögmenn
  • Jón G. Hauksson, Editor in Chief of Frjáls Verslun


  • Árni Þór Þorbjörnsson, Managing Director Corporate Banking, Landsbankinn
  • Halldór Benjamín Þorbergsson, SVP, Icelandair Group
  • Freyr Þórðarson, Managing Director of Corporate Banking, Arion Bank
  • Helgi Júlíusson, Fund Manager, Landsbréf
  • Þórður H. Hilmarsson, Director of Investments, Promote Iceland

15:40 – 16:20

Wrap up – How can we use the outcome of the Conference discussions for strategic planning and action in the Icelandic tourism industry going forward?


  • Frosti Ólafsson, Managing Director, Iceland Chamber of Commerce


  • Helga Árnadóttir, Managing Director, The Icelandic Travel Industry Association (SAF)
  • Heiðar Guðjónsson, Chairman of the Board, Innviða fjárfestingar slhf
  • Jón Ásbergsson, Managing Director, Promote Iceland
  • Ragnheiður Elín Árnadóttir, Minister of Industry and Commerce

16:20 – 16:30

Get energized and inspired by Vilborg Arna, Adventurer

16:30 – 17:30

Reception; Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres

17:30 – 18:30

Best New Business – Pitch Competition!

For more information click here


  • Gústaf Gústafsson, Head of Sales, Marketing and Product Development at North Sailing


  • Oddur Sturluson, Project Manager, Icelandic Startups


  • Bergrisi
  • Book Iceland
  • Náttúrukúlur
  • Taste of Nature
  • Adventurehorse Extreme
  • Arctic Trip
  • Health & Wellness
  • Traustholtshólmi
  • Jaðarmiðlun
  • Happyworld


  • Ásberg Jónsson, Founder and Chairman of the Board, Nordic Visitor
  • Hrönn Greipsdóttir, Investment Manager Arev for Eldey TLH hf.
  • Robert C. Barber, US Ambassador to Iceland
  • Sigþór Jónsson, COO, Icelandic Securities (Íslensk Verðbréf)
  • Viktoría Sveinsdottir, CEO, Iceland Tourism Investment Conference & Exhibition

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