AIS says that reaction to its recent show, held at the organisation’s Shirley, West Midlands headquarters, has been “extremely positive” – even allowing for the current uncertainty in retail.
“This is our main show of the year and, exactly like the rest of the high street, our members are being more cautious than usual,” housewares and gifts controller David Parkes told HousewaresLive.net.
“However, initial feedback from many of our suppliers who attended has been extremely positive – in many cases they’ve already overtaken last year’s results. We’ve had fantastic comments from several key members.”
The exhibition, which is open to AIS members only, showcases new suppliers, seasonal promotions and new products, covering lines for the following six months, up to and including the January sale. Over 90% of AIS’ selected suppliers attended, with just seven unable to take part.
“Supplier support is very important to AIS and the efforts that many of them made with their stands was clearly evident,” said Parkes.
Attendance at the show was marginally down with four fewer stores attending.
AIS holds its shows in its purpose-built, 30,000sq ft exhibition centre. The next, which will run in March 2012, will benefit from the new showroom annexe.