Nikkei Show 2009 Report

Posted by Jim Ivanoff
March 10th, 2009

Nikkei 4
Nikkei 3
The positive mood I reported after day 1 of
the Nikkei Show luckily held for the entire show. Both our exhibitors and the
show visitors were surprised by the amount of people coming through. The
combined Nikkei Show attracted 236,740 visitors. Of that, 142,467 people were
there specifically for the Architecture and Construction Materials exhibition. Despite
all of the doom and gloom about the economy, these numbers are only down 9% and
7.8% respectively from last year.


However, even with the drop in attendance,
the show actually felt busier. How can this be? Some people postulated that attendees
were spending more time on the show floor looking carefully at the exhibits. With
the economy slowing down industry professionals had more time to not only visit
but to also stop and talk to exhibitors. Also, the even more competitive nature
of the industry these days is really pushing people, especially architects, to
search out new ideas and products. This again probably led attendees to spend
more time at the show.


Many people were also surprised to see so
many companies exhibiting this year considering that a lot of businesses have
been cutting back on expenses. The Nikkei Show has sold-out year-after-year,
but the fact that it was sold out again this year is really impressive.
However, if you take into consideration how successful this show has been for
exhibitors over the years, it is not surprising that this would be the last
marketing activity that companies would want to cut. The combination of this
year’s strong attendance figures and exhibitor numbers also shows how important
trade shows still are to the Japanese construction industry.


As for the Canada Wood pavilion, throughout
the entire four days of the show we had a constant stream of clients invited by
BC Wood coming by to meet with members. This opportunity to meet with key
industry players was appreciated by both new participants as well as our
regulars. Many new business relationships were born out of this while others
were cemented.


However, one of the most appealing aspects
of the Nikkei Show for all exhibitors is that fact that it attracts so many
architects. Even for our regular exhibitors this guarantees meeting a lot of new
faces at the show. These architects tend to be involved with higher-end custom
homes and commercial projects which are a perfect fit for high-quality Canadian
building products. Hopefully these new contacts will lead to many new
opportunities for our members.

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