Gift Group Aims To Host National Trade Show
By Becky Boswell Smith -- Home Textiles Today, 11/14/2005 12:00:00 AM
Cincinnati — —
Cincinnati — A national gift trade show to be established as a non-profit venture by United Sales Associates may be a reality by 2010, if that organization's board is successful in its plan.
According to Stuart Miller of Goodwin Weavers, incoming treasurer of the group of about 350 manufacturers and reps, one of the organization's three major goals is the establishment of such a show to help companies manage costs and time spent at trade shows.
A letter was sent recently, Miller said, to George Little Management, AmericasMart, Dallas Market Center, Merchandise Mart Properties and other show managers, telling them of the plan.
“We're not trying to put those people out of business,” Miller said, “we're just trying to make it more affordable for companies. We would like to have them help, but on our terms.”
Citing a decline in retail attendance at shows in recent years, Miller said the buildings “are not doing anything to help their customer. This business is changing, and we have to change with it.
“We don't need another trade show, we need one that is meaningful. We need a show that benefits the industry, not the realtors.”
Because this is a preliminary effort, Miller said locations for the show are yet to be considered, but he mentioned Chicago, Las Vegas and New York as cities that have appropriate sites.
USA, which is changing its name to Gift and Home Trade Association, will hold its annual meeting in Phoenix Nov. 18-19. A retail advisory board has been named for the group and retailers will be invited to join as full members. Miller, who also is president of the Gift Sales Managers Association, said the GSMA also will meet in Phoenix just before the USA meeting. GSMA has about 75 manufacturers as members and Miller expects to build synergy between the two groups on this project.
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