The 51st edition of IHGF Delhi Fair was the third fair to be held on a virtual platform since the Covid-19 pandemic hit in 2020.
While everyone was looking forward to the physical fair this year, unfortunately the worsening situation in India made it impossible and the show was once again moved to the digital realm.
Held from 19 to 23 May, the fair was spread over 15 virtual halls with 700 manufacturers and exporters showcasing their latest products and ranges.
“During the five days of the event we noticed that since the pandemic has forced people indoors, items like furniture, home furnishings, rugs, décor etc, have been very popular with buyers,” says Dr. Rakesh Kumar, director general, EPCH.
“Further, the pandemic situation has eased in countries such as Australia, Europe and US and buyers from these countries are looking to replenish their stores and want to source products from the fair.”
Indeed, 2,400 overseas buyers from 110 countries visited the virtual fair including Boyd Blue, Florabelle Imports and Bed Bath n Table from Australia; Zara Home from Spain; London Ornaments from the UK; and Ashley Furniture, Benzara, ELK Home, Walmart and Homeroots from the US.
The Ajai Shankar Memorial awards were also held during the fair with awards for best design display for virtual booths in categories such as decorative, gifts houseware, tableware, kitchenware and hotelware, bathroom accessories, lamps, lighting and accessories, furniture, home furnishings and candles.
Overall, the fair was a success says Shri Ravi K Passi, chairman, EPCH. “The show was a success both in terms of exhibitors’ participation as well as buyers visiting, leading to generation of serious business enquiries,” he says.
“The highlights of the fair remained craft demonstrations, webinars and thematic participation of crafts of Jammu & Kashmir and North Eastern Region.”
Webinars on topics such as ‘Quick ways to optimise forex operations in turbulent times’; ‘Seven easy ways to grow your exports’ were organised to provide in-depth knowledge to the participants, so that they can keep themselves abreast with the international trade requirements, adds Kumar.
Further, craft demonstrations by artisans included blue pottery, Warli painting, screw pine craft, Kani shawls, Meenakari, and artistic textiles.