The four-day Asia Outdoor Trade Fair 2009, which opened on July 30, 2009, reached a record high in terms of scale, the number of exhibiting brands and trade visitors. This year the exhibition area covered 2,500 sq. meters, with hall A, B, C in use, while the number of exhibiting brands reached 288, up 17% from last year’s numbers. Among the brands, 52 were international brands from 24 countries. The total number of visitors also reached 14,344, which was a 52.6% increase over the last year, and the number of present media was 129, with 351 journalists, up 9.7% from the year prior.

“Referring to our registration data and a brief analysis of the surveys we carried out throughout the show, we can say that a large number of trade visitors from the North have found their way to Nanjing. Beyond that, many smaller dealers have attended the show for the first time,” said Richard Li, Assistant Director of the Nanjing fair. “After five years, the booming outdoor [segment] in China has finally become popular among consumers in the second and third category cities, all of them by the way megacities with up to seven million inhabitants,” he added.

Most of the 35 new outdoor brands were OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) producers looking for new markets to replace their devastated export businesses. Newcomer brands were of great interest, especially to dealers focusing on lower-priced segments. Asked how the trade fair ran for them, they seemed extremely happy and satisfied. Combining top-range European and overseas brands, Asia Outdoor now offers a suitable choice for the emerging markets in its surroundings. Even international buyers appeared confident socializing at Asia Outdoor.

As more than 86% of the attending brands signaled they would definitely return in 2010, some of whom have already booked bigger booth spaces, the Nanjing team and its European overseas office in Germany are confident in raising their numbers again in 2010.

“We’re not only focusing on quantities. We have clearly identified the key points for a successful continued development of Asia Outdoor in the future,” said the show director Oliver Schmitt. “Building up a platform for the outdoor community, creating opportunities for brand experience, matchmaking European brands with Asian distributors and investing in the trading up of new markets—these are the targets for the upcoming show,” he insisted.

The next Asia Outdoor show will be held from Jul. 29-Aug. 1, 2010 at Nanjing International Exhibition Center.

—Regina Henkel