Domotex asia/ChinaFloor: Readying for record 2012 event

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SHANGHAI, CHINA—With nearly six months to go before the 14th staging of Domotex asia/ChinaFloor (DACF), the event is once again showing why it is one of, if not the, largest floor covering markets in the world as officials are reporting more than 70% of what is an expanded exhibition space is already booked.

Set for March 27 to 29 at the Shanghai New International Expo Center, the event will be spread out over 11 exhibition halls as opposed to the nine used in 2011.

David Zhong, president of VNU Exhibitions Asia, which co-owns and manages DACF, said an increase in new exhibitors and an increase in booth space requested by returning exhibitors explain the show’s need to expand. These indicate “increased confidence” in the value of the show to the international industry as well as in the growing Asian construction market, which demands 1.8 billion square meters of flooring annually to meet its growth.

“The increased participation by manufacturers reflects perfectly the growing demand for all types of floor covering products in Asia,” he added. “This is all likely due to the rise of living standards in China. This interesting shift in market demand will clearly influence the show, bringing a more diverse array of products than ever before.”

Officials said the expanded space will allow for an estimated 1,100 exhibitors to participate, along with the ability to offer new education programs, including two product demonstration areas for exhibitors to showcase their installation or cleaning products.

Jerome Lizambard, DACF’s international sales and marketing director, said some examples of the expanded educational offerings include a conference on hospital building and another conference on sports and leisure flooring.

In addition, the National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) is planning to participate both with an exhibit space and by creating a tour for members, the later of which is difficult for them to do on their own, Mike Martin, CEO, told FCNews. “It is much easier going as a group. It’s more organized, structured, much of the work, planning done as a group can create a better sense of being serious about doing business.”

He added, up to now NWFA has been just sending board members to see and report on the show. “So this is a bigger step toward the association’s internationalization.”

Lizambard said the expanded space will also allow for an improved layout. “In 2012, all resilient and carpets will be located in the West halls, while the wood/laminate/cork/bamboo as well as the machinery will be in the East halls. It will make it easier for visitors to find the products/exhibitors they are looking for…and, more importantly, it will ensure a smoother traffic flow.”

With an estimated 40,000 people expected to attend the 2012 event, officials said now is the time to start making travel arrangements, including booking a hotel.

“Asia offers a great future for the flooring industry and untold business opportunities happening now,” Zhong concluded. “Looking at the flooring industry perspectives in Asia, and encouraged by the trust the industry is having in DACF, we feel even more committed to deliver the high quality platform the industry needs to take advantage of the opportunities here.”

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-Matthew Spieler

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