DENVER -- The Colorado International Marketing Organization was
unveiled here, representing the state's first step in
reestablishing international tourism marketing. Since the loss of
$1 million in annual state funding and the closure of the Colorado
Tourism Board in 1993, there had been only a skeletal international
marketing presence, officials noted.
CIMO was scheduled to be introduced at the ITB trade show in
Berlin by a delegation of about 20 representatives from Denver and
other Colorado cities. According to a CIMO spokesman, the
delegation would proceed to London after ITB to meet with British
Airways officials to discuss new nonstop flights between the U.K.
CIMO's base program has a goal of providing a comprehensive
marketing foundation in the U.K., Germany and, as funds become
available, Latin America. The nonprofit CIMO will have an initial
operations budget of $600,000.
"CIMO is really aimed at fixing a long-standing problem," said
Barb Jennings, communications director of Colorado Ski Country.
"For many years international marketing efforts have been
splintered and with no funding available. There are many people out
there doing various things, Vail doing something in London,
Steamboat doing something with London. But from our perspective, we
said, 'Let us come together with some matching funds and promote
Colorado/Denver as an ideal destination.' "
According to Jennings, about 9% of total ski visitors to
Colorado Ski Country hail from overseas, and that number has been
increasing steadily for the past five years. "We hope it will grow
even faster as a result of our new marketing under CIMO," Jennings