Exhibitors reported great satisfaction with sales and the number of quality buyers as the 2018 Manchester Furniture Show (MFS) ended on 17th July.
The addition of MidPoint and its higher end brands at MFS this year further raised the profile of the show. It demonstrated the evolvement of MFS into a ‘must attend’ event for buyers seeking new products for autumn and Christmas selling in upholstery, cabinet, beds, mattresses and accessories and across the full breadth of market sectors.
The overall attendance figure was resilient in the current climate with the show attracting over 5,000 visitors - only marginally down on the 2017 attendance. The slight drop was due to the challenges of the World Cup Final, the Men’s Wimbledon Final and the exceptional hot weather.
MidPoint proved to be highly successful drawing in buyers from large retail and group stores who had not previously been part of the VIP Buyer Programme. These included CFC Interiors, Casey’s Furniture, Home Designs, Julian Foye, Meubles and Cubbin & Bregazzi who all welcomed the opportunity to see a large variety of products from exclusive brands including Italia Living, Kesterport, Venjakob, Chelsom and SITS who had not shown at MFS before.
Many of the MidPoint exhibitors reported great results from their first MidPoint outing at MFS. Spink & Edgar Sales Director, Tina Reilly, said, “We weren’t sure what to expect but are thrilled with the buyers we’ve seen and the positive reaction to our sofas. The show has a lovely feel and we will definitely be back next year.”
In the Main Hall many exhibitors also reported their satisfaction with the event and were also impressed by the quality of the attending buyers. UK Sales Director Steve Lamb from VIDA Living commented, “We’ve had our best ever Manchester with great sales across a broad spectrum of products. We’ve seen new buyers, especially from Ireland and high-end UK stores and we couldn’t be more pleased. There is no hesitation in booking our space – and hopefully larger space, for next year.”
The extended VIP hosted buyers scheme also brought more buyers to the event with many expressing delight at the high calibre of the companies and products they saw. The relaxed atmosphere of the event and the city centre location of the venue also impressed them. Show Director Cleere Scamell said: “The addition of MidPoint, the enhanced visitor marketing activity and investment in our hosted VIP scheme, attracted a larger number of influential and high spending buyers than ever before. It proved to be a good decision as many of the buyers taking part were impressed by the quality of the exhibitors and the products on show, and many placed large orders for that important autumn trading period.”
Several exhibitors have requested more space at the 2019 event and the show organisers report that the re-bookings for next year are already high at over 80%. The show returns to Manchester Central on 14th-16th July 2019.