The Hotel Show 2005 goes international

This year’s Hotel Show, taking place from May 22 to 24, is set to be the biggest in the event’s history. With a venue switch from the Airport Expo Dubai to the Dubai International Exhibition Centre (DIEC) and the addition of ten new countries to the exhibitor list, the show hopes to reflect the incredible recent growth in the marketplace.

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By  Robbie Greenfield Published  May 16, 2005

This year’s Hotel Show, taking place from May 22 to 24, is set to be the biggest in the event’s history. With a venue switch from the Airport Expo Dubai to the Dubai International Exhibition Centre (DIEC) and the addition of ten new countries to the exhibitor list, the show hopes to reflect the incredible recent growth in the marketplace. “The regional hotel supplies market is booming and has become a major target for the big global names within the industry,” says Bernard Walsh, managing director of dmg world media, organiser of The Hotel Show. “This is one of the reasons why this year’s event will be bigger and better than ever.” Over 325 exhibitors from 36 countries will be present at the event this year. International markets will be out in force, with ten countries making a Hotel Show debut, including Tunisia, Philippines, Thailand and Hungary. Greek companies will join forces for the first time in an effort to capitalise on the millions of dollars worth of hotel developments in the Middle East. At least nine leading Greek manufacturers and manufacturers’ associations will make a debut under the umbrella of the Hellenic Foreign Trade Board (HEPO), an organisation under the supervision of the Greek ministry of national economy. “Many Greek companies are interested in establishing business links with the Gulf region and our debut at The Hotel Show aims to open the lines of communication between them and their potential clients or partners in this region,” says Michalis Pavlakos, project manager, HEPO. “We believe Greek companies are perfectly positioned to gain a good share of the market for hotel supplies in the region.” The line-up of Greek exhibitors includes manufacturers of lighting systems, high-quality bedroom and table linens and blankets. One exhibitor is G-Style S.A, which specialises in stainless steel bathroom accessories as well as specially designed bathroom accessories for disabled people. “The Middle East market is our number one strategic target for the forthcoming years,” says Andreas Giannaros, the company’s managing director. “At the moment we generate 7% of our turnover in this region and our aim is to increase this figure to 30% by the end of 2006,” he adds. Meanwhile, established pavilion-holders like Portugal, Spain and Germany are looking forward to a strong presence. The Portuguese Business Association will head the Portugal pavilion, while neighbouring Spain has brought 22 companies as part of its Hotel Show delegation. “Suppliers in the world market look upon the Middle East very seriously and want to come and do business here. The Hotel Show is the perfect platform to announce themselves, so it would be very surprising if the event hadn’t grown this year, given the growth of the market,” adds Walsh. This sentiment is seconded by the show’s exhibitors: “We’ve chosen to exhibit at this event because we consider the Middle East region to be a fast growing region in terms of the hospitality business,” says Petar Cerimanovic, export manager of Swiss company Ligo Electric. Italian mini bar specialist BarTech views the show as one of the major trade exhibitions in the Middle East. “As a supplier of automated mini-bars and with more than 100,000 units installed worldwide in four- and five-star hotel rooms, we are convinced that the Hotel Show is the place in the UAE where we can promote our system,” says Sophie Longevialle, marketing director for BarTech. Despite the convenience of the airport location for international visitors, Walsh believes the show has outgrown that venue, both in size and reputation. “The DIEC is very much the premier exhibition venue in Dubai, if not the region, with world class amenities at our disposal. More importantly, it gives us scope to grow further down the line,” he explains. Featuring exhibitors from both large multinationals and smaller, local companies, the new location at DIEC will enable The Hotel Show to showcase more new product launches, larger stands and more visitor amenities. Multinationals are arriving in greater numbers as an acknowledgement of growth in the region, but Walsh believes the event also provides a perfect starting block for debut firms. “The show allows them to determine pretty quickly the potential for their product, and additionally the three days will provide excellent exposure to all sorts of people from the industry. Exhibitors know that we will bring the key buyers, distributors, hoteliers and restaurateurs to the show.” Furniture and tableware will also be well represented at the show. One such company, Indonesian manufacturer Warisan, is targeting the UAE as a potential growth region. “Being based in Indonesia gives us access to fantastic raw materials and diverse inspirations. [At the Hotel Show] we are looking for an impressive platform to present our brand in Dubai and chose this show as being the best of the bunch,” says C James Newbould, managing director, Warisan.

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