China’s sourcing opportunities and the country’s burgeoning retail sector were likely to be the catalyst of the success of Paperworld China’s debut.
The event, which took place from 15-17 November at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre, saw over 12,600 buyers from 81 countries and 452 exhibitors from 22 countries. Out of the 22 per cent of exhibitors and the 22 per cent of buyers that came from outside China, the countries of Taiwan, India and Korea were among the top five.
Roland Bleinroth, president of event owner Messe Frankfurt, was pleased with the event. "US exhibitors and attendees seem to be quite positive about their experience at the first Paperworld China," he told OPI. "The growing local demand for high-quality products makes the market more attractive for non-Chinese exhibitors than in the past… and of course the total number of attendees always tends to be significantly higher at Chinese shows…
"Similar to the recent Las Vegas edition, Paperworld China is off to a good start and promises to be even better in its next edition," he added.
The show’s triumph was also marked by positive feedback from exhibitors and visitors alike, all of whom spoke of the show’s potential.
Better Tsui from Chinese exhibitor Oma Office Equip-ment told OPI: "I think it was the most successful fair held by an overseas professional fair company that I have ever seen. It is well known that China has become the world’s workshop, so Chinese suppliers would like to go abroad to show off their latest items. Owing to the small stands and limited platform at Paperworld Frankfurt, Paperworld China offers suppliers a broader platform and helps them realise their dreams of stepping out to the West."
Rob Nirsimloo, director and general manager of UK exhibi-tor Multichem, added: "The potential is there and my personal feeling is that Frank-furt is steadily declining. The high cost of exhibiting in Frankfurt (travel, accommodation and booth space) is something that is constantly pointed out to me by Asian customers. I can see that Paperworld China could become the Paperworld exhibition in the next five years."
(see ‘Going global’, pg 26)