Amidst the many trade fair cancellations, both local and international, there is some good news to report with the NSW and Queensland Government giving the go ahead for the events industry to start trading again.
This means Gift & Lifestyle on the Gold Coast and Spring Gift & Lifestyle in Sydney can proceed as planned in September 2020.
However, the shows will have to be reconfigured to ensure a safe environment in the Covid era, which has allowed Expertise Events to review how it can help kick-start and help the gift and lifestyle sectors begin trading again and establish a direct link to retailers.
“This extraordinary time requires extra-ordinary ideas to ensure the industry is strong, supported and is in great shape to survive and prosper in the ‘new norm’,” says managing director, Gary Fitz-Roy.
“We know, and fully understand, that suppliers and retailers will be cautious about their marketing activities and expenses over the next 12 to 24 months.
“We also know that the industry wants to come together, unite and connect at one safe event. In many ways the Gift & Lifestyle Fairs should be a cause for celebration; a form of ‘healing’ if you like. And it’s even more important for some given the other major interstate shows have been cancelled, so now the Sydney and Gold Coast fairs are the main events."
The September period will represent a crucial opportunity for retailers to re-stock ahead of the Christmas period and is one of the first opportunities buyers can reconnect with reps and suppliers. It's also important for exhibitors to show their customers they are still in business.
“We believe that the crisis could encourage more attendance, but as always, exhibitor pre-fair activity helps make the event successful,” Fitz-Roy adds.
Expertise Events will be introducing a range of initiatives to ensure a safe and commercially viable event including wider aisle-ways, spacing breaks across the hall with seating to spread the show, registration system and a badge system that identifies their level of comfortability in how they wish to interact with other people. Also, all stands with tables and benches will have the option to come with Covid Perspex protection screen for presenting and displaying product to buyers and completing orders.
“We are also developing some very topical and relevant seminar sessions to help retailers with rebuilding plans which will be released soon.
“It’s in everyone’s best interest that we work towards a successful fair in time for Christmas trading. Now is not your time to give up or quit,” Fitz-Roy concludes.