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March  2 0 1 6

T R A D E  S H O W  N E W S


Outstanding design was celebrated at AmericasMart Atlanta as designers and retailers gathered to source trend-making merchandise at the Atlanta Spring Gift, Home Furnishings and Holiday Market in early March. The intimate buying opportunities gave buyers another occasion to explore the Market center’s over 1,500 permanent Home, Gift and Rug showrooms, complemented by a curated Temporary showcase of up-and-coming and artisan lines. The weekday run allowed buyers to be back in their stores for the busy spring shopping season.

The early March dates also allowed retailers and designers to secure on-trend Holiday and Floral merchandise before manufacturers’ deadlines.

“AmericasMart’s Holiday/Floral and Home Décor collection really sets the industry trends,” said Brooks Beard, leasing director for the category. “Placing orders in March ensures that retailers and designers will have the latest and greatest, must-have items when they need them.”


NY NOW, the Market for Home, Lifestyle + Gift, has announced the winners of its Best New Product Awards, as well as the winner of the Best Exclusive Launch Award. Winners were announced at the winter 2016 edition of NY NOW, which ran in late January and early February at New York City’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

Winners in the Best New Product category were: The Berlin Table Lamp by Pendulux; Stagg Pour-Over Kettle by Fellow; Milestone Toddler Cards by Milestone; The Doodle MONET Placemat Set with Wash-out Pens by eatsleepdoodle; Chelsea Rain Cover for Purses by The Gussy; Bohemian Rose Body Balm by McEvoy Ranch; The Rogue Backpack by Peg and Awl; Fish Zooties by Silk Road Bazaar; and the SustainAbility clutch bag designed by Ann Ong for Imperial Nova.

The winner of the Best Exclusive Launch Award was Love Mae’s Woodland Feast four-piece bamboo dinner set.

“The ability to see exclusive products is one of the things that sets NY NOW apart from any other market event, and this year, the number of products that debuted at NY NOW was positively overwhelming,” said Randi Mohr, NY NOW co-director and vice president. “We’re pleased to award Love Mae with this honor and look forward to seeing the product’s success in the market!”

Winners were determined onsite by a panel of industry experts and members of the media after each qualifying exhibitor’s booth was visited to see the products first-hand.

Surf Expo

Surf Expo, the largest and longest running tradeshow for brands and products in the boardsports, resort and beach lifestyle markets kicked off its 40th show season with a strong January show.

SVP and Show Director Roy Turner said, “The industry gathered in Orlando to help us celebrate Surf Expo’s 40th year and we couldn’t be more stoked. From the Bustin’ Down the Door presentation with Shaun Tomson, PT, Ian Cairns and MT on hand, to the 25th anniversary of Eastern Surf Magazine and highlighting the history of the Ollie in our skate section, the show came full circle. Once again Surf Expo offered the very best working environment for the thousands of qualified buyers who trust us to deliver.”

The show featured more than 2,300 booths of hardgoods, apparel and accessories in the surf, SUP, skate, swim, footwear, resort, coastal gift and boutique categories. Nearly 20 percent of exhibitors were exhibiting at the show for the first time, and with the many new products unveiled by long time exhibitors, buyers were presented with a wealth of new brands and products to diversify their mix.

“We found about a dozen new lines, which is phenomenal,” said Jeoffrey Nathan, owner of Coastal Urge in Wrightsville Beach, N.C.

Charlie Bunger, owner of Bunger Surfboards in Babylon, N.Y. said, “The show met all my expectations and I was able to secure a few new brands I wasn’t aware even existed, that I think will be a nice addition to our shop.”

The pace remained consistent across the three-day show as buyers from more than 3,100 retail companies from 46 states and 51 countries viewed lines, met with manufacturer executives and placed orders.

“Surf Expo is a working show, and we write more orders and get more done than any other trade show. As far as a trade show, Surf Expo’s got it down,” said Eric Miura, owner of Déjà Vu in Hawaii.

USA brand manager for The Mad Hueys, PJ Connell, said, “The Mad Hueys is an emerging brand and every dollar we spend has to count. Investing into Surf Expo proved to be the highest return on investment to date growing our retail account network exponentially. We’re going back.”

Brandy Faber, the Roark Revival’s marketing director added, “Roark had another amazing Surf Expo this January with appointments booked solid from the moment the doors opened on day one until the lights went off on the last day.”

The show continues to capture the core surf market, with strong turnout from surfboard manufacturers as well as shapers and accessory brands.

Jim Vaughn, owner of Whalebone Surf Shops in North Carolina and Virginia, said, “We had a great show. The best part was the turnout of surfboard manufacturers. There’s so much new technology changing so fast. It was great to touch the boards and talk to the shapers - it builds excitement for me and the shop.”

The show’s second annual Hawaii Pavilion featured exhibitors with unique, one of a kind products made in Hawaii. Dennis Ling, administrator for The State of Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism commented, “Surf Expo has provided the State of Hawaii with the most efficient and effective marketing and sales opportunities exposing our Hawaii manufacturers to thousands of qualified retailers.”

“We really enjoyed the show but we ran out of time. We found a lot of new things that we plan to write orders for and we found some new products we did not see in Las Vegas or Gatlinburg,” added Lakeisha Dukes, corporate director of retail operations for Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts in New Braunfels, Texas.

“The January Surf Expo was again a great experience for us and helped continue to build on the success we’ve had from our last show. It’s not just that we have great buyers coming through the booth, but the networking and brand building you can get done at Surf Expo is just not possible at other shows we’ve done,” commented Bradley Reidl, owner of Beach Road Design.

Highlights from the show included a Florida Shape Off, an industry party, an East Coast Surfing Hall of Fame Ceremony, recognition awards, a 40th anniversary celebration, a Celebration of Florida Skateboard Roots and The Ollie.

Surf Expo Recognized As One Of The Industry’s Fastest 50 For Growth In 2015 By Trade Show Executive

Trade Show Executive has named Surf Expo among the Fastest 50 trade shows in 2015 for growth in exhibitors. This marks the fourth consecutive year the show has been on the Fastest 50 list.

“Surf Expo is excited to be included in Trade Show Executive’s Fastest 50 once again. The award for exhibitor growth is a reflection of our market strength and buyer-focused efforts. We look forward to expanding our market verticals in 2016 and attracting more attendees to help us achieve our goal of being THE marketplace for water sports in the world,” said Roy Turner, Surf Expo’s senior vice president and show director.

“The Fastest 50 Class of 2015 once again includes a mix of established shows and up-and-coming events in nearly every industry sector, proving that face-to-face exhibitions are important assets to the business world,” said Darlene Gudea, president of Trade Show Executive Media Group.

The next Surf Expo will take place September 8-10, 2016, with Board Demo Day on September 7, in Orlando, Florida.

ToyFest West 2016

With over 700 manufacturers being exhibited, ToyFest West has become the show for toy sellers west of the Mississippi to get a jump on what is new for the year. Reps work with their vendors to ensure that great specials will be offered to customers who come to the show to see new and restock on tried and true.

The show changed to three full days this year March 6 – 8 at the South Point Hotel, Casino and Spa and included WTHRA’s Sunday night Gala, an event that celebrated leaders from all aspects of the industry. This year’s Retailer of the Year was Cheeky Monkey from Menlo Park, Calif. The 2016 Hall of Fame inductees include Bernice Baird, John Hansen Jr., John Hansen, Mark Philips, and Sue and Dennis Daniello. The Gala was longer than in previous years with dancing added at the end of the evening.

This year the show offered attendees a special opportunity to make the most of their travels to Las Vegas. The EDexpo show took place at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino beginning on March 9, and buyers who attended ToyFest West received free entrance to the show on opening day.

Urban Expositions and Development

In response to ongoing construction resulting from the Moscone Center’s expansion and improvement project, Urban Expositions will relocate SF Market (formerly the San Francisco International Gift Fair) to the San Mateo Event Center for the August 27-30, 2016 edition. Located 10 minutes south of the San Francisco International Airport, the new site offers a convenient and cost-effective alternative for the show’s loyal attendee and exhibitor base, as well as the opportunity to attract even more retailers from the western region and nation.

Located at 1346 Saratoga Drive in San Mateo, Calif., the San Mateo Event Center is the only venue serving all of the major population centers in the Bay Area from San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose. Offering easy access to all three major Bay Area airports and Cal Trans, the center also has over 48 acres of on-site parking spaces located conveniently to the main entrance.

“The timing and construction for the next phase of Moscone’s renovation/expansion project would impact the space and accessibility needs for our summer show,” explained Donna Guess, vice president of souvenir shows, SF Market and the Seattle Gift Show, Urban Expositions. “As one of the Bay Area’s top destinations for trade events, the San Mateo Event Center is a very viable alternative for SF Market. From its easy accessibility and exhibit space availability to parking and surrounding hotels, the Center’s location and infrastructure will deliver a virtually seamless transition solution.”

The summer 2016 edition of SF Market will feature a versatile product selection built around the Northern California lifestyle. SF Market will continue to showcase the same same classic best-sellers, sophisticated styles, California-based companies and local artisans its loyal buying audience has come to expect - all featured in the same categories: Design, Gift, Makers Market, Outdoor Living, Pairings, Personal Style, Tabletop, Gourmet & Housewares, Treasures to Go, Village Arts, and Vintage Collection. In addition, retailers from throughout the Western region and nation can look forward to finding even more fresh new resources that reflect the interests and lifestyles of their customers.

The Winter 2016 Seattle Gift Show Spotlights Regional Specialties, Handcrafted Styles

Held January 22-25, 2016 at the Washington State Convention Center, the winter 2016 Seattle Gift Show delighted retailers with a versatile selection of regional best-sellers and handcrafted styles across all categories. Joining the show’s popular Makers’ Market section, the new Urban Craft Uprising pavilion offered retailers even more unique, hand-styled designs to shop with more than 30 artisans from Seattle’s largest indie craft show featured.

During the show, Urban Expositions announced the summer 2016 Seattle Gift Show schedule at the Washington State Convention Center, slated for August 19-22, 2016.

“The Pacific Northwest market is unique and we understand the specialized needs of the region’s retailers and their clientele. We’ve worked hard to assemble a selection of product in every category from a wide range of exhibitors and manufacturers that truly reflects the regional interests, eclectic tastes and discerning needs of the marketplace,” said Donna Guess, vice president souvenir, SF Market, Seattle, Urban Expositions. “The introduction of the Urban Craft Uprising pavilion is another way we’ve tried to stay true to the Pacific Northwest retailer by offering even more handcrafted and artisan goods and we’re so pleased to hear how happy our attendees were with the addition.”

Among the show highlights, Urban Craft Uprising hosted a roundtable discussion focusing on Indie Crafts that joined the full educational seminar line-up at the show, which also included a conservation-focused seminar led by Tommy Brown of the Saint Louis Zoo. Retailers also had the chance to win prizes ranging from $100 cash giveaways to exhibitor-sponsored gift baskets. The show also asked for retailers’ input in voting for their favorite product on display in the Maker’s Market section, choosing Lucky Horses the Seattle Gift Show’s Best Maker.

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