The buzz of buyers continued to fill the halls of the NEC in Birmingham yesterday (Monday September 5) as those in search of new products were out in force at Autumn Fair.
Merchandise on offer at the gift and home trade show, which runs until tomorrow (Wednesday September 7), varies from housewares, home décor, lighting, gadgets, giftware to accessories.
At the forefront of the action yesterday was globally-recognised entrepreneur Jo Malone MBE, who gave a keynote presentation to a packed audience.
Described as the woman responsible for creating some of the world’s most-loved fragrances, her first brand – Jo Malone London – launched in 1995 and quickly gained cult status around the world. She sold the business to Estée Lauder Companies in 1999 and remained creative director until she left in 2006.
In 2008, Jo was honoured with an MBE for her services to the beauty industry. Her passion for fragrance never ceased and in 2011 she launched her fragrance brand: JO LOVES.
Jo shared her ‘brand building journey,’ offering tips for growing a retail business and overcoming trials along the way. Central to this are her five key principles for success: inspiration, innovation, integrity, ignition and instinct.
Seminars were also held on ‘How to Create a Truly Unique Social Channel for your Business’, led by Toby Beresford of RISE global, and ‘How to Achieve Design Success for your Shop Interior’, presented by Martin Holland, winner of BBC series ‘The Great Interior Design Challenge’.
As the show reached its halfway mark, the quantity of retailer visitors from across the UK and overseas continued to grow with names such as Bentalls, Dunelm, Fenwick, Hamleys of London, John Lewis, Joules, Joy, My 1st Years, prezzybox.com, Selfridges and Tesco in attendance.
Adding to the day’s events, The Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China held its official opening ceremony on Monday afternoon to celebrate the 14th European Showcase of ‘Brands of China’. The showcase for this year’s event comprises 180 selected Chinese brand enterprises from 10 provinces, exhibiting across 209 stands in a bid to strengthen and enhance Sino-UK trade and economic relations.
Organised by i2i Events Group, the Autumn Fair will open from 9am-4pm tomorrow, which is the final day. Visit www.autumnfair.com to register for your free ticket.
Jo Malone MBE