The mayors of Dallas and Fort Worth arrived in Berlin on Sunday, leading a Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport delegation in an effort to develop business relationships and travel connections, especially nonstop cargo and passenger flights, between DFW and Europe.
Joining Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price are DFW Airport Board of Directors Chair Lillie Biggins, DFW Airport Board Member Bernice J. Washington, DFW Airport CEO Sean Donohue, and a contingent of business leaders from the region.
“The relationships we have with Germany and the U.K. go back a long time,” Price said. “Our regions have strong industry connections across diverse business sectors, such as aerospace and defense, technology, construction, energy, manufacturing, transportation, logistics, and of course, travel and tourism. … Business ties further reinforce our connections, and this mission gives us an opportunity to share and build on these relationships.”
Robbie Briggs, President and CEO of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty, is part of the delegation. Meetings are scheduled in the United Kingdom and Germany. Germany is the second largest foreign investor in the DFW market.
“The growth in our region is staggering – from both the international and domestic standpoint,” Briggs said. “It is incumbent upon business leadership to reach out and establish lines of communication, and to explain what the DFW market has to offer investors, visitors and new residents.”
DFW International Airport currently has five European nonstop destinations: Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Paris, Heathrow/London and Madrid. To ensure a smooth arrival, the airport organizes 700 “ambassador” volunteers to greet and assist international travelers. The light rail that carries visitors to center city Dallas will expand within two years to Downtown Fort Worth, airport officials said.
The airport delegation began its European visit with a debriefing my Mortiz Holtz of the U.S. Commercial Service of the American Embassy in Berlin. He offered an economic update on Germany and Europe.
The delegation will meet with officials in Europe through June 13. The aim is to increase the role of the Dallas-Fort Worth region in the international arena.
The trip also helps set the stage for the Word Travel & Tourism Council’s meeting in Dallas in April 2016.
“The decision to bring this important gathering to Dallas confirms that our city is growing as an international destination with an increasing number of direct flights out of DFW International Airport,” Rawlings said. “… Dallas has hosted the New Cities Summit, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and now this prestigious global organization has recognized Dallas as a key city and region within the United States.”
President and CEO Robbie Briggs independently owns and operates Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty with seven offices in Dallas, Fort Worth, Uptown, Lakewood, Ranch and Land, The Ballpark and Southlake.