Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles concludes with strong business results
Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles’ 22nd edition concluded last month after four days of solid business, with exhibitors and buyers positive overall about the results of the fair and the future of the market in China and throughout Asia
The 1142 exhibitors from 30 countries and regions that participated was down on last year (1402) due mostly to the majority of domestic bedding & towelling suppliers switching to the Spring Edition held earlier in the year, while this had an impact on the visitor number as well which decreased to 37779 from 98 countries and regions (2015: 42048, 97 countries and regions). In total, the fair covered 160,000 gross square metres, and took place, for the first time, over four days from 24 – 27 August, 2016.
Premium editors and Whole-Home exhibitors flourish in hall 5.1
Editors and Whole-Home exhibitors were a big highlight this year, with their placement in the premium hall 5.1 attracting much attention. Being foreign brands with subsidiaries in China, JAB and Prestigious were two editors pleased to see the growing demand for their products in the Chinese market. JAB Anstoetz remarked that Intertextile Shanghai was an effective platform for them to develop the Asia and China markets. “We received more orders and got more useful contacts than before,” Ms Elsa Leung, Account Executive said. “Overseas products are of high quality and they are not very expensive compared with domestic products nowadays. Thus the demand from Chinese buyers keep increasing.” She also commented that Chinese customers are looking for more quality products which benefits editors like them. Prestigious from the UK shared a similar view. Their booth attracted a large visitor flow of which more than 60% were new domestic customers. “Our products are high-end-positioned imported fabrics. The current market demand for mid and high-end fabrics is rising, while domestic customers also have improved style,” Ms Niki Zhang, General Manager Assistant explained their growing popularity.
The Trend Concept Exhibition in hall 5.1, which many editors participated in, also helped attract more visitors to their booths. An agent for brands from different countries including France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Thailand, Turkey and the UK, Jasonite’s Mr Jason Zhao Yu, Managing Director said: “The show has brought us a lot of visitors, thus we are satisfied. We had visitors including retailers, wholesalers, manufacturers and designers from both China and overseas visit our booth.” Jasonite confirmed during the fair they would attend for the coming three years as well. “We value this platform a lot. The fringe programme including forums, seminars and design events, which high-end customers pay attention to, has upgraded the show a lot,” Mr Yu continued.
Also bringing more than 10 well-known European brands to the fair, Beijing Yada considers that it is now the golden age for the mid and high-end home textiles market in China. “Customers can have a better understanding of our imported brands through the display in the Trend Concept Exhibition. Some of the visitors decided to cooperate with us after seeing our products in the display area,” Ms Ailing Gao, Manager said.
Whole-Home exhibitor Lezai Dongfang Culture Co Ltd valued the show as well. Mr Xu Jian Bin, Representative said: “There were a number of visitors to our booth who plan to place orders. I have reached my target this year in which I secured some agents. This is a good platform as it is of higher quality compared to the domestic fairs.”
European suppliers have success targeting high-end market
Pavilions from European countries featured in the International Area, and were a favourite for buyers looking for premium products. One exhibitor in the Belgium Pavilion, Libeco-Lagae NV, considered the show useful for them. “We chose to participate in the fair because this is one of the only shows where we can really attract the higher-end buyers. This is definitely the most important home textiles fair in Asia. We only do one show in Asia, and this is the one,” Mr Thomas Luys, Sales Manager said. They made 66 contacts on the first day alone, with a number of these likely to become future customers. “The market for our products is small at the moment but growing rapidly. In the last four years, we’ve seen the market continue to grow because the middle class is expanding every year and more people have higher purchasing power.”
Enzo Degli Angiuoni from Italy had a similar experience targeting high-end buyers with their jacquard velvet. “We’ve met many buyers here, and around 90% of them were new. Most of them are likely to have serious business cooperation with us. The buyers’ quality has improved over the years, and now when they enter our booth they are serious about establishing a business relationship with us. The luxury market here is still doing well, so our business is continually growing,” Mr Davide Goria, Managing Director said.
Adding to the fair’s range of events was the Trevira CS Design Challenge organised for the first time at Intertextile Shanghai by Trevira GmbH. According to Ms Anke Vollenbröker, Director Marketing & Business Development, the main goal of the event was to support European editors and connect them with Chinese buyers, and positive feedback was received from the editors. “It’s a new concept for us, and it’s given them a platform to display their works. We feel the concept has worked as they’ve been approached by potential customers. Having the Design Challenge at the fair has helped us to be seen as an integrator of the industry. Overall we’ve had a very good response from our partners to what we’ve done here this year.”
Overseas exhibitors achieve strong results in the International Area
Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles international participation was enhanced this year with seven country and region pavilions from Belgium, India, Morocco, Portugal, Pakistan, Taiwan and Turkey in the International Area. As a regular exhibitor, velvet supplier Boyteks Tekstil from Turkey views Intertextile Shanghai as the most effective fair in Asia. “In addition to China, we’ve had buyers from South America, New Zealand, Australia and the US, and many placed sample orders with us which we believe will develop into good business afterwards. We are already thinking about expanding our booth space,” Marketing Manager, Mr Mevlut Baydar said. He was also optimistic about the potential in China. “We think China will become one of our most important markets soon because the market is huge and the number of rich people is probably more than Turkey’s population. If you have articles for this market segment, your business will be in good shape.”
Blackout and cotton upholstery exhibitor Alps Industries Ltd form India also managed to meet their target buyers from America, Europe, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand as well as new buyers form Saudi Arabia, Morocco and Malaysia. Mr Amitabh Sen, Business Head (Fabrics Business) said: “We’ve met many buyers and had very serious business discussion for new projects. I think the good enquiries we got could develop into a quarter million dollars’ worth of business.” He thinks the show is an effective fair in terms of selling to the right buyers, as well as being able to buy from good suppliers themselves.
Selling products from yarn and fabric to linen, Crescent Textiles Mills Ltd from Pakistan was positive about the fair as well as the growth of their business. “It’s been a good experience for us, and buyers have been coming to our booth, especially the big brands. The Polo Ralph Lauren buying office visited us, as well as big Australian brands and others,” Mr Mansoor Tariq, Manager Marketing said. “We don’t feel any effect from the economic situation; people here still have money to spend, and the market here recognises Pakistan products too.”
Targeting the domestic market, first-time drapery hardware exhibitor Sunlit Home Fashions in the Taiwan Pavilion found the fair effective. “80% of visitors to our booth were from China, as well as some from Europe, Australia and Morocco. As well as new buyers we can also meet existing clients, so the fair has exceeded our expectations,” Ms Judy Liao, General Manager said.
From Thailand, Textile Gallery (PASAYA)’s Managing Director, Ms Ratiya Chantian was also satisfied with the number of visitors they received during the show. “We met a number of new buyers from both China and overseas. Many of them seem to have very high potential on making a purchase. Amongst these buyers, some are wholesalers, furniture manufacturers, people in the contract business and even interior designers.”
Original design artwork and digital printing gain in popularity in China
Designer artwork and digital printing are two of the emerging trends in the Chinese home textiles market, so the Intertextile Design Boutique and Digital Printing Zone attracted a number of local and overseas companies this year. Design studio Teceland from Portugal came to Intertextile Shanghai this time because many Chinese buyers at Heimtextil Frankfurt requested them to attend, and designer Mr Miguel Pereira believed both fairs could work well for them. “Chinese buyers appreciate European designs. We sold a lot of designs in the first two days, and after the first hour here I was sure we would come back next year,” he said. He also regarded the fair as a good occasion to learn about the Chinese market, make sales and contacts, as well as receive requests for new designs.
Local studios also see the opportunity in the design artwork market. Regular exhibitors, Ten & Co were satisfied with the result generated in the fair, with Ms Emma Yin, commenting: “The sales for design artworks have kept growing in recent years; there’s a lot of potential here. Being allocated in the Intertextile Design Boutique is an advantage for sure as it is easier for customers to locate us and helps generate more business,” Ms Yin added, also saying they will return next year.
As a first-time exhibitor in the Digital Printing Zone, the Korean company, D.gen Inc found the show worthwhile. Mr Kilhun Lee, President & CEO explained: “We were busy during the four-day fair. Not only Chinese buyers visited our booth, but overseas buyers too.” Among the visitors they met, more than 80 to 90 % were their target. “A fair like this one helps us to collect new contacts and meet new buyers. There is definitely a high demand for our products and digital technologies in this fair,” Lee concluded.
Chinese exhibitors satisfied with number of overseas buyers they can meet
Domestic exhibitors also found the fair rewarding for their business. Mr Chen Kai, Sales Manager of Tongxiang DINUO Textile (Leather) Co Ltd reported that they met many customers from Europe, the Americas and the Middle East, with many placing orders on the spot. The booth of Zhejiang Kaidiya Fabrics Co Ltd was also crowded throughout the fair. “We have received hundreds of orders from different countries’ buyers so far including from new and old customers, and it is only day two of the fair,” Mr Chen Hua, General Manager said. Hangzhou Guoda Silk Mills was pleased with the number of foreign visitors they encountered throughout the fair. Not only were they able to reconnect with long-time clients, they even got orders directly from customers without the involvement of dealers, Ms Xu Yamin, the head of sales reported.
Buyers value fair’s quality exhibitors and trend events as orders remain strong
As many exhibitors mentioned, buyers at the fair were still buying this season, whether they were from China or overseas. Mr Kelven KS Lit from Censpot Trading of Hong Kong was searching for overseas companies which he felt offered very good quality and innovation. “We’ve met with eight companies from Korea and Turkey so far, and will potentially buy from four of them. Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles is definitely the best home textile fair in Asia in terms of exhibitor quality & quantity and hospitality to the fairgoers.” Ms Sarah Bridgens from New Zealand’s Central Threah was also looking for good quality products. “I’m sourcing high quality jacquard, and I found about 10 to 15 potential suppliers in this fair. I think the fair offers a very good variety of products for me to select,” she said. Mr Andrew Ng, Window Image & Interior Furnishing, Singapore concurred: “The quality of exhibitors has greatly improved over the years, and the fair has focused more on the high-end market. I’ve found some suppliers which I’m ready to contact afterwards, so this trip has been fruitful.”
Many Chinese buyers were at the fair to place orders with international suppliers, as well as learn from the trend displays and events at the fair which featured participation from overseas brands. Mr Zhijiang Wang from Airland Home Textile Technology, one of China’s largest home textiles brands, began in the various trend areas before choosing which materials they would use for next season. “Today is only the first day of the fair, but we’ve already purchased patterns from British and Japanese exhibitors,” he said. When asked about the potential of the Chinese market in the coming year, he mentioned: “I believe that the home textile market will continue to grow, and that there will even be a small increase in the next year.”
Other Chinese buyers were searching for overseas brands. “The quality of products here is really good, and I’ve already placed two orders and plan to learn more about high-end brands such as JAB Anstoetz,” commented Mr Wu Yichun of Yulan The Design of Soft Decoration. “Compared with the Shenzhen fair, this has more overseas exhibitors and product categories, and mostly targets the high-end market.” Mr Qin Baowen, a Designer at Shangdong Hengtai Textile discovered Trevira through their seminar and the Design Challenge: “I’ve gained a lot of knowledge about flame-retardant products now, so I will go to their booth to know more about their products.”
Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles – Autumn Edition was organised by Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd; the Sub-Council of Textile Industry, CCPIT; and the China Home Textile Association (CHTA). The next Autumn Edition will take place from 23 – 26 August 2017, while the Spring Edition runs from 15 – 17 March 2017.