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World Enterprise 108 Fair Review(HKTDC Enterprise, Vol 01,2008)

AsiaWorld Expo Events
Four of the best



An exciting new sports show set the scene for an action-packed week for buyers at Hong Kong's AsiaWorld-Expo in late October last year

The first edition of Sports Source Asia featured around 300 exhibitors from seven countries and regions - Hong Kong, the Chinese mainland, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Taiwan and Thailand.

The inaugural event exceeded expectations according to Anne Chick, Senior Exhibitions Manager at the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (TDC), which organised the show with MMI-Munich International Trade Fairs Pte Ltd.

"Sports Source Asia was supported by the ispo group, which connects more than 85,000 industry players worldwide," Ms Chick notes.

"More than 6,400 buyers attended the fair, including 38 buying missions consisting of more than 500 buyers from around the world."

The fair spotlighted a vast range of sports goods in five theme zones:

  • Sportswear
  • Sports Equipment
  • Sports Shoes
  • Sports Accessories
  • Fabrics and Materials

The launch of Sports Source Asia coincides with the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2009 East Asia Games in Hong Kong and the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou all on the Asian horizon.

Given Hong Kong's strategic location, Sports Source Asia undoubtedly served as an ideal platform for sourcing products and developing new business opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly in the emerging Chinese mainland market.

Hong Kong sportswear and sports accessories exports totalled US$4.3bn in the first nine months of 2007, up more than 3% over the same period in 2006.

Sports Source Asia joined the Hong Kong International Building Materials and Construction Equipment Fair, Hong Kong International Furniture Fair and Eco Expo Asia at the AsiaWorld-Expo facility.

Now in their second year, the latter three events are "marvellous platforms for suppliers and buyers," Ms Chick claims.

The Hong Kong Int'l Building Materials and Construction Equipment Fair, for example, attracted more than 240 exhibitors from six countries and regions - Hong Kong, Belgium, the Chinese mainland, Italy, Indonesia and Taiwan.

A new Building Ceramics and Sanitary Ware Zone was added to ease sourcing, while visitors were also kept abreast of the latest market and product trends through seminars highlighting building and lifestyle trends, sustainable development and architecture. "Some 45 buying missions consisting of more than 1,000 top buyers visited the fair," Ms Chick adds.

Hong Kong's exports of building materials and hardware reached US$12bn, up 14.6%, in 2006. "Latest figures show they had already grown 7.7% to reach US$9.5bn in the first nine months of this year, with the Chinese mainland, the US, Japan, Germany and Macau as the top five markets," Ms Chick notes.

Not to be outdone, the Hong Kong Int'l Furniture Fair drew in excess of 170 exhibitors from 19 countries and regions, with Austria, Egypt, France, Germany, Indonesia, Spain and the UK taking part for the first time. "Attendees included more than 1,140 top buyers from 46 buying missions," Ms Chick says.

The fair featured a wide selection of offerings, including designer, office, contract business, indoor, outdoor and classic furniture, as well as parts and accessories.

The IGLOO zone - Inspirational, Glamorous, Lively, Original and Outstanding furniture - was again staged following the previous year's successful launch. "It was joined by the new Classic Furniture Zone, which covered both antique and reproduction items of exceptional quality," Ms Chick explains.

Finally, the Eco Expo Asia - International Trade Fair on Environmental Production, which is the only event of its kind in Hong Kong, featured the region's latest environmental solutions.

"Some 135 exhibitors from 18 countries and regions participated, including new exhibitors from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, India and Vietnam, as well as 24 buying missions consisting of more than 520 VIPs," Ms Chick notes.

Eco Expo Asia spotlighted the latest products and services in three zones:

  • Green World addressed buyers of regional and national organisations
  • Green Enterprise offered solutions for business and manufacturing
  • Green Living concentrated on eco-friendly consumer products and services

"All four shows were outstandingly successful and are rapidly becoming established events on their respective international calendars, with Sports Source Asia being particularly timely in view of the forthcoming Beijing Olympic Games," Ms Chick concludes.