CITEXPO concluded on August 21 following three trade fair days and it drew 12,324 professional trade visitors in total. Around 44.7% are international visitors who came from 125 countries. Of these, approx. 20% were at the event for the first time. The footfall was good during each of CITEXPO’s three days. 82 percent of exhibitors said they had achieved their goals for the event.
A trend has been witnessed by the exhibitors of CITEXPO in this year that is a shift to ‘push’ internationalization. Sam Lai, international marketing manager from show organizer - Reliable International Exhibition Services, explains: “Tariffs may have knocked the competitive edge off ‘made in China’ products in markets, such as Europe and America. Manufacturers are now more aggressive to go out of China (push) to set up productions (Thailand was a show buzzword) and find markets where they can sell their products, especially emerging markets like one-belt one-road countries and South America. We’ve increased our show marketing in those countries and this coming year we will increase our efforts even more.” Because we advertised and marketed CITEXPO more intensively this year by targeting emerging markets through various channels in both traditional and social media, we saw a lot of new visitors and the energy level of the show increased significantly compared with last year. The second reason is that the typical CITEXPO visitors are proactive in nature and attends this year’s show because of current market challenges. They come to our show for first-hand market information and sourcing new products, especially from countries that are not affected by the tariffs. And of course, they want to negotiate better prices thought face-to-face discussions,” Lai adds.
Wheel is another pillar of the show
Over 100 wheel manufacturers and distributors were presented this year and this trend has continuously grown at CITEXPO in recent years. Lai believes this phenomenon will continue in the future. “China is the main producer of wheels, both for cars and trucks. According to data I’ve seen, around 70 percent of the world’s wheels are made in China. And we are one of the most important wheel trade shows in the world. It is an important pillar for us.” The Chinese name for CITEXPO was already changed to include wheel. Lai says the existing English name CITEXPO will be retained as the show has built up high brand value over the years. “However, we will emphasize that we are also one of the main wheel trade shows in the world through our media channels and advertisements. Also, there are growing upper and middle classes in China that prefer imported cars and related accessories, such as high-end wheels from overseas. We aim to cater to this market going forward, too.”
Early Interest In CITEXPO 2020
More than 80 percent of next year’s booths have already booked up. Some prior exhibitors who only attended this year’s show as visitors have also committed to exhibiting next year. Lai says this reflects the “very good” feedback received about CITEXPO 2019. There were some up-and-coming companies, such as IRIS Tyres and Tomket Tires, promoted their brands to both Chinese and major international importers in this year's show. Lai says: “Those up-and-coming companies would benefit the most from exhibiting at CITEXPO because our show started as an export platform for the then up-and-coming Chinese tire and wheel makers. We have a very clear positioning and grow to be a very big show. CITEXPO has long enjoyed a good reputation in the tire export channels and has been recognized by global distributors. Now a lot of manufacturers have achieved their success through us and continue to leverage our platform to promote their brands.” Lai shares that more than 80 percent of the exhibitors present at the very first CITEXPO in 2003 are still exhibiting. “This really tells you something.”
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