Showcase 2018 in Dublin, the most important trade show on the Irish calendar with over 450 exhibitors in one location, proved a resounding success in January in terms of visitor satisfaction and exhibitor success rates, with generated sales and orders amounting to €23.9 million.
This year’s exhibition saw visitor satisfaction numbers stand at 99 percent. The vast majority of retail visitors to the show reported satisfaction with the event and Showcase continues to attract a steady stream of dedicated visitors each year with very high rates of return from visitors to the event.
In total 2,156 stores from around Ireland visited the event and the numbers of visitors from Nordic countries and from Germany saw significant increases on last year’s figures. Showcase 2018 also saw strong attendance from UK buyers, with a notable mix of buyers from both department and museum stores despite the challenges presented by Brexit.
Show highlights included the MADE/ Slow initiative featuring beautiful Irish products across the fashion, jewellery, home and gift sectors. Daily fashion shows at the event, styled and curated by renowned stylist Catherine Condell, showcased a unique presentation of quality fashion designed and made in Ireland.
The range of contemporary, desirable designs in the fashion show included those from brands such as Magee, Avoca, Triona and award-winning Áine knitwear who was awarded both Best Product Award Overall Winner and Design Ireland Winner for her a-line knitted dress at Showcase 2018.
“These Showcase awards are wonderful — they keep you current in terms of news and they validate the brand and what you are trying to do in business,” says MD and Head Designer at Áine knitwear, Anne Behan.
The Design Ireland exhibition islands at the show were beautifully designed spaces which represented the very best of products designed and made in Ireland. Donegal designer Bernie Murphy showcased her products for the first time this year and was awarded a Highly Commended award for her turquoise tweed three-piece outfit.
Speaking about the event, Bernie was keen to emphasise its importance in “gaining knowledge from and exposure to national and international customers”. As a first-time exhibitor at the show, Bernie took orders from national buyers as well as those visiting the event from the US and Germany.
Sectors represented at the show included those across the home and gift, jewellery and fashion sectors. A wide variety of brands were represented, from large well-established companies such as Irelands Eye, Foxford Woollen Mills and The Shamrock Gift Company to smaller brands such as Jando Design and Holden Leathergoods.
The Local Enterprise Showcase on the balcony at the RDS provided an opportunity for visitors to meet with emerging brands such as Alex Thiel jewellery, Brookfield Farm or The Bearded Man, while a series of seminars provided visitors with information on topics such as the latest retail trends and how technology can drive business.
Trade visitors to this year’s event reported that it satisfied their demand to both source new suppliers and to investigate new products or innovations. Visitors were also attracted to Showcase 2018 as it provided them the opportunity to meet existing suppliers and to research new trends in retail.
Core visitor loyalty to Showcase stands at almost 21 percent above global averages for similar trade shows, while the percentage of visitors that reported full intent to return to Dublin for Showcase 2019 stood at more than 20 percent above the global benchmark for such events.
Visitors to the Showcase exhibition are both domestic and international. While Showcase 2018 saw a high percentage of visitors from both the US and France in particular, buyers from Japan, Germany and Spain also saw significant representation at the event.
From the perspective of visitors from Ireland, Dublin and Leinster provided the greatest numbers of visitors to the event, something which can be attributed to population density and proximity to the event which takes place in Dublin, Ireland’s vibrant capital city.
To keep informed about the show and to receive your Fast Track entrance badge for Showcase Ireland 2019 register now