As we can finally see the light at the end of the Covid lockdown tunnel, Expertise Events is launching a live event to give retailers an opportunity to stock up for Christmas and into the new year.
Held at the ICC in Darling Harbour from 7 to 8 November, the idea for the tabletop event was inspired by similar events held in Adelaide and Perth earlier this year, says managing director, Gary Fitz-Roy.
“We have maintained contact with our clients including retailers and exhibitors throughout the year and the recurring theme seemed to be that people want to reconnect,” he says.
“They are tired of online and Zoom and want to go back to face-to-face meetings and social networking.”
Indeed, Victoria based exhibitor Get Posh director, Gary Davis, believes face to face presence is needed and it will help the industry to recover.
“We are looking forward to get back to normal face to face business with our existing customers and promoting our brand to new customers,” he says.
“The industry needs signs of normalcy to help it get back on track.
“We will have some new products to show at the event including some of our storage seats, our ever increasing man cave range and some Christmas items we did not have at previous fairs earlier this year.”
The timing of the event is deliberate says Fitz-Roy. “Vaccination rates are providing light at the end of the tunnel with current projections being that NSW will open around 11 October to double-vaccinated people, with Victoria and Queensland not far behind.
“With Christmas looming and even with current lockdown restrictions, retailers need to review new products and collections that will be available for the busiest and now the most important sales period in 2021. And they must forward-plan for the annual New Year sales, which are growing in importance.
“Also, with the dates falling on Sunday and Monday, this gives retailers to still trade on Saturday which is one of their busiest days of the week, while Sundays and Mondays are usually quieter,” he explains.
The low cost tabletop trade event will be held in two adjoining rooms, one for gifts and one for jewellery, and you will need to check in for each separately. Each company will have a certain amount of space, trestle table, three chairs and corporate signage.
Feedback has been very positive so far, in fact, says Fitz-Roy, they have upgraded to a bigger room to accommodate everyone.
“With increased demand we wanted to have more space to make sure we are a Covid compliant event. Also, while most companies will have two to three tables to display their products there are some companies that have requested three to four tables. We aim to have around 40 exhibitors.”
Artico’s Huw Rees expects a retail bonanza once everything reopens so it’s full steam ahead to engage with its customers and get back to business.
“We are looking forward to meeting and interacting with retailers, displaying our 130 plus new products including Harlequin Games, Bluhen Sleep Centre, Bluhen Shower Hub, William Morris Gifts and many more.”
Fitz-Roy adds that he has extended an offer for a free stand to AGHA and the Australian Toy Association as it is all about the industry coming together.
“This event is not about getting the biggest orders, it’s all about getting back out there, reuniting communities and getting together face to face.
“There is a real desire and need for suppliers to connect with clients before Christmas, something we understand and appreciate. It’s even more important for those companies who have not met face to face with clients for more than one year and as much as two years.”
The Giftguide team will be at Stock Up & Top Up Christmas so make sure you stop by and say hi!