Score one for our embattled mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa, who announced on Monday that Microsoft will be bringing its Worldwide Partner Conference to the citywide venues next year. The question is, will bagging the world's largest computer concern beef up L.A.'s chances of also catching the much-sought Comic-Con conference, which is weighing L.A., San Diego and Anaheim for future shows.
"Hosting this banner event for the global technology community is a major win for Los Angeles and an important boost for our local economy," Villaraigosa stated. "We look forward to welcoming Microsoft and its partners to LA next summer, and showing them the best of what this world-class city has to offer."
The Microsoft conference happens July 10 through 14, 2011. The event is expected to draw "between 12,000 and 15,000 attendees from all 50 states and more than 120 countries, generating just over 50,000 hotel room nights and $45 million in attendee spending alone," according to the mayor's office.
Mark Liberman, president of the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau, said it would be the largest convention in city history. He credited the development of downtown, specifically the addition of LA Live's entertainment campus, as one reason Microsoft is coming here.
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Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said, "It's an ideal setting for our global community of 15,000 partners from 120 countries to share their ideas and energy for technology and business opportunities in the years ahead."