ALTHOUGH the outlook for exhibition industry growth in 2013 was not substantial, significant pick-up is expected in 2014 and 2015 with positive and accelerated exhibition growth over the long-term.
Statistics released by the Centre for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) (2013) reported that although the industry had been hit hard by the struggling global economy, overall the exhibition industry showed growth of 1.5% for the financial year 2012. Exhibition space sold grew by 1.2%, the number of exhibitors increased 0.5%, the number of visitors increased 2.5%, and real revenues grew 1.6%.
On the local front, Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery reports that its broad portfolio of exhibitions continues to expand with future growth expected from developing local trade exhibitions in addition to building its international partnerships with shows like Grand Designs and IFSEC.
“We are expanding our brands regionally as well as moving into new geographic areas. Propak Cape is back in Cape Town in 2014 and Propak has also been successfully launched into East and West Africa,” says Gary Corin, Managing Director, Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery. “The highly successful Electra Mining Africa has extended its footprint in Africa with the launch of Electra Mining Botswana in September 2013, with Electra Mining West Africa taking place in Ghana in March 2014 followed by CBM-Tec Zambia (Powered by Electra Mining.)”
“Over the past two years, we have seen a continued increase in visitor attendance at our shows,” says Corin. “On site sales, plenty of sales leads and brand visibility are cited by exhibitors as being the major advantages and benefits of exhibiting. Our shows are delivering a good return on investment for exhibitors and providing a world-class event for visitors keen to see the latest in products, services, technologies and trends.”
Exhibitions remain a powerful medium to source new customers, engage with existing customers, build brand awareness, launch new products and generate sales and sales leads. But, says Corin: “The economy has forced greater scrutiny in how marketing budgets are spent and companies have been more selective in their choice of exhibitions and in their choice of exhibition organisers.”
“Exhibitors want to know that the exhibition organisers have an equal interest in the ROI for both the organiser and the exhibitor – as this ensures long-term mutually beneficial partnerships between both.”
All eyes will be on Cape Town this year as it claims the ‘World Design Capital 2014’ title, and Hostex will be right there in the mix bringing another installment of Africa’s leading hospitality, catering and food services expo to the celebrated Mother City.
Even after 26 years, the show just simply refuses to slow down. “Hostex keeps evolving over time and recent strategic restructuring ensured that each visitor got the chance to experience the best the show had to offer, from the myriad of culinary competitions, to the more than 200 exhibits of the best in hospitality products, services and free educational content,” says Corin.
Propak Cape returns to the Cape Town International Conference Centre (CTICC) from 21-23 October. With a demand for exhibition space, stands are almost completely sold out well in advance of the show.
“Top local and international companies in packaging, food processing, printing, labelling and plastics will showcase the newest products, latest industry trends and product developments with many interactive displays and on-site product demonstrations,” says Corin. “Together with co-located shows FoodPro, Pro-Plas Expo, Pro-Label Cape and Print Expo, the show brings exhibitors together across the various sectors, and enables visitors to engage with the most progressive companies in the country.”
Another first for Cape Town is the launch of the Wine Manufacturers Equipment (WME) 2014 Expo, which is being held alongside Propak Cape. Cape Town is host to the heart of the wine-making trade and South Africa has long been established as a country that offers some of the best wine and sparkling wine in the world.
Aimed at vine-growing, winery, bottling, equipment and farm sectors, this expo will attract visitors from manufacturers and food and drink industrialists to importers-exporters, oenologists, wine growers and producers, members of co-operatives and major wine retailers and wholesalers. The expo is jointly organised by Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery, Feria De Zaragoza and Feder Unacoma, and is powered by Enomaq-Eima.Techovid.
Other top brands within the Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery fold include Electra Mining Africa, IFSEC South Africa, Interbuild Africa, KZN Industrial, Markex in addition to international partner shows like Grand Designs Live SA, which is a joint venture between Montgomery Africa and Media 10 (UK) and perfect for anyone who has an interest in interiors, build, kitchens, bathrooms, gardens, shopping, food and technology. If you’re looking to make the most of your home, the show will provide you with plenty of amazing ideas to unlock its potential and turn your dream home into a reality.
“We offer South Africa’s largest portfolio of exhibitions servicing business to business sectors of the Southern African economy and our geographical reach extends across Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and the Western and Eastern Cape,” says Corin, “whilst also now increasing our African footprint.”
“Always striving for excellence, we were thrilled to receive the EXSA Awards for two of our top shows and as Best Organiser Company 2013 and Best Organiser Employee. It was further confirmation that we are a market leader in the exhibitions industry. This is the experience we bring to Cape Town. We also recognise and appreciate the tremendous support we get from all our exhibitors, visitors, suppliers and staff and accept that, without them, there would be no exhibition industry,” added Corin.