By Moe Lastfogel
Director of Sales and Marketing for The Retail Observer
My last few months have been a whirlwind of travel. I’m ready for a well-needed break which I’ll be able to take in April. While traveling to Germany for IMM and Living
Kitchen, KBIS, TICE, two buy fairs, LV World Market, the International Housewares Show, ASTI and Arch Digest, I’ve seen hundreds of thousands of very upbeat and excited people.
KBIS, the featured expo in this issue, was absolutely stunning. The numbers still aren’t in, but a good guesstimate is that KBIS drew well over a hundred thousand visitors for Design and Construction Week – a 30% increase over last year, and one of the biggest of all time. Many manufactures stepped up their game with larger booths and many new products, which we will highlight over the next few months starting with this issue.
IMM and Living Kitchen were two big highlights of my travels. Cologne, Germany is a great city for trade fairs, with gigantic facilities. Filling 11 halls, some with two stories, these shows definitely warranted a transatlantic trip. Living Kitchen showed the newest trends in the kitchen, and IMM had more furniture offerings than I’ve ever seen. I’m looking forward to returning in 2021, and this time I’ll add a few more days since two just weren’t enough.
As for all the other shows and buy fairs I visited – I can only say a big triple-WOW!!! The attendees were excited, the vendors were joyous, and the general atmosphere was truly upbeat. A large number of these shows achieved double-digit growth in attendance and significantly more vendors than in prior years. The outlook for this year is great, and we can’t wait to show you these fantastic events in our upcoming spring and summer issues.