Emap invests in consultants for Spring Fair International
10-Dec-10by Annie Byrne
Emap Connect has invested £1m and brought on a collection of celebrity designers and consultants to overhaul its Spring Fair International show from 2011. The next event takes place at the NEC from 6-10 February and extends across 13 halls. Emap Connect Home and Gift MD, Louise Young, said its £1m investment was made over the past 18 months and aimed at improving customer experience and service. This had attracted more exhibitors and buyers to the fair, she added. “New content and features are integral to growing the volume and value of transactions placed at Spring Fair as they help inspire and guide retailers buying, as well as increasing their comfort and overall enjoyment,” Young said. She revealed well-respected interior designer, Justin Southgate, who previously worked on Grand Designs and the Ideal Home Show, is now assisting with new content for Spring Fair International 2011 and 2012. Among features designed for the next event is The Trend House, where buyers can take away trend packs courtesy of online trend forecasting service, WGSN. “Over the last two shows, we have been working with a number of consultants, including Rah Productions and Cleere Koritsas-Scamell, to help deliver exciting content to the show which includes Cook Live, where celebrity chefs such as James Martin and Raymond Blanc have appeared,” Young continued. “Using the talents of our team with ideas from our consultants means we are continually innovating in order to heighten the presentation values and the experience our visitors and exhibitors enjoy, at what is the UK’s largest exhibition.”Among other features planned for 2011 are a new Toy Demo area and Tasting Table, while an additional Life Style Zone will highlight kitchen and houseware products. A dedicated London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games group stand, organised by LOCOG, will incorporate 34 of its official licensees showcasing newly launched games merchandise. Other floor plan additions are a Revive rest area for visitors, and a Graffiti Café illustrated by contemporary artists. A major investment has also been made to improve traffic flow around the exhibition, Young said. According to Emap, 500 new exhibitors and 400 international suppliers will be among 3,000 companies exhibiting next year. This year’s Spring Fair attracted just under 72,862 visitors (ABC audited).This year’s Spring Fair International was supported by increasing numbers of Chinese exhibitors participating in its Brands of China European Showcase.