Once again BC Wood organized the Canadian Pavilion at the Nikkei Newspaper’s construction industry trade show. This year, seven BC Wood members took part covering a variety of products including log & timberframe homes, kitchen cabinets, WRC, mouldings and flooring, as well engineered wood. Our Canada Wood partner, Canada Tsuga, took space with us as usual. We also included a special display on the Canada-Tohoku Reconstruction Project so that show visitors could see the efforts being made by Canada in helping to rebuild after the March 11th, 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
Having Japan’s most influential newspaper behind the show means that it will always be a well-attended event. The show is only open to industry people and yet attracted 242,353 visitors over four days. This represents a 2.6% increase in attendance over 2012. In total, there were 1,279 exhibitors (for a total of 3,640 booths) representing 13 countries. The show organizers are looking to further build this event by clearly branding it as a “Nikkei Show”. Therefore, from this year, they started using “Nikkei Messe” as the overriding name connecting the various sections such as “Architectural and Construction Materials 2013,” “Japan Shop 2013,” “Lighting Fair 2013,” etc.
Aside from the strong numbers, you could also sense the bullish housing sector in talking with the visitors. While there is a concern of what might happen after next year’s consumption tax increase, many people that I spoke with are now feeling optimistic that the economic recovery will keep housing starts strong past the tax hike. More importantly, participating members reported a good number of business leads and strong sales figures by the end of the show.
During the week, BC Wood also worked with COFI to put on a seminar for the Japanese committee members working on the new CLT JAS code. This is a crucial time in these deliberations as the first draft is expected to be tabled by this spring and the final draft brought into effect by next spring. Therefore, we seized the opportunity to have Colin Chornohus speak to the committee as Structurlam was participating in the Nikkei Show. Colin was able to address their questions about using mixed species such as SPF as well as the types of glue used in Canada and Europe.
All in all, it was a very busy and successful week!