Strong Attendance, Orders Reported For Vegas Market
Las Vegas Market announced that the 2014 Summer Market, which ran Sunday, July 27, to Thursday, July 31, was a success for both buyers and suppliers by virtually every measurable benchmark—attendance, number and diversity of resources, new contacts made, and orders written.
According to Bob Maricich, chief executive officer, International Market Centers, the strong positive reactions to Summer Market from participants are a direct result of the phased growth and enhancement of Las Vegas Market over the past two years. “Just two years into our three-year strategic growth plan, Las Vegas Market has added 1,200 resources and more than doubled its gift and home décor attendance while simultaneously maintaining and growing the existing furniture buyer base. We are delivering on our promise to transform Las Vegas Market into the only major furniture, home décor and gift destination in the western United States.”
The Summer Market featured the largest number of resources in Las Vegas Market’s history, with the addition of many high-profile new resources in the Market’s core furniture segment, as well as substantial numbers of new exhibitors in the booming gift and home décor categories. Continued growth in temporary exhibitors, as well as increased density in showrooms, is attracting a broad array of retailers and interior designers in record numbers, including 77 of the top 100 home furnishings retailers.
Attendance growth has been most dramatic in the emerging gift and home décor area, where in just two years (from summer 2012 to summer 2014), gift and home décor attendance has more than doubled with a 132% increase. One key growth area is new-to-market retailers, which has been facilitated by concerted outreach by IMC’s Retail Relations team.
“There’s so much variety here – you can go from fashion accessories to foods to home décor to baby items,” noted buyers Jennifer Pomerenke and Betty Moss of Idaho-based Marigolds, who attended Las Vegas Market for the first time. “The variety is what drew us to Las Vegas Market the most, and we are very impressed.”
Both new and returning retailers praised the positioning of Las Vegas Market as conducive to cross-category shopping, and the fast growing lifestyle store category citing an increasing array of complementary furniture, home décor and gift products. “It’s very beneficial for us to be able to see everything under one roof – furniture, mattresses and gift items,” commented Mike Forwood, store manager for Texas-based Louis Shanks Furniture. “We’re doing a brand new gift gallery in our store, so gift has been important for us. We find new products here in Las Vegas that we typically don’t see in some other markets.”
Similarly impressive, attendance from the interior design trade was up 76% from Summer 2012, with designers taking advantage of the synergies and opportunities for cross-category shopping between furniture, home décor and gift items.
“We seem to be seeing more designers than in the past and we’ve even seen a few gift retailers,” noted Amy Peterson, marketing associate for furniture supplier Star/Orient Express. “We show at Las Vegas Market to expose us to a broader audience who is not familiar with our company.”
In line with Las Vegas Market’s tactical positioning as a regional powerhouse, attendance from the Western states increased 62% over the past two years; attendance from the Midwest states was up 43%, and the TOLA region (Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas), registered increases of 39%. The top states in terms of attendance were California, representing more than 34% of total attendees, and Nevada, representing 15%, followed by Texas, Arizona, Utah, Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Florida and Idaho.
Many exhibitors reported making substantial numbers of first-time contacts at the Summer Market, especially among Western buyers. Exhibitors also reported strong and steady order-writing throughout the Market.
“We thought we had high penetration in this market, but more than half of our walk-in traffic didn’t know our company!” declared John Roudabush, chairman of Bungalow 5, a supplier of furniture and home accents. “We’re seeing a lot of companies from California, Utah, Arizona and Nevada who don’t regularly shop Eastern markets.”
Adriana Mello, chief marketing officer for Keena, a leading gift and home décor sales agency making its debut at the Summer 2014 Market, pointed out, “It’s refreshing to see buyers outside of our typical territories and we are excited to be part of what feels like a national show. We’ve seen buyers from New York, Minnesota, Missouri and Canada as well as buyers that we have not seen in regional markets where we normally show. This offers us nice expansion on our buyer base and we have huge expectations for Las Vegas.”
Las Vegas Market is the leading furniture, home décor and gift marketplace in the western U.S., presenting 2,200+ gift, home décor and furniture resources in an unrivaled market destination. Las Vegas Market features thousands of gift, furniture and home décor lines, allowing for cross-category commerce among these industries. The Winter 2015 Las Vegas Market runs January 18-22, 2015, at World Market Center Las Vegas. For more information, visit www.lasvegasmarket.com.