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NYIGF returns to pre-recessionsize & delivers record results
Aug '11
Marked growth in attendance and exhibitor participation resulted in the largest New York International Gift Fair (NYIGF) since summer 2008.

Reflecting a pre-Recession level of business activity, the summer 2011 NYIGF presented more than 2,800 companies – 110 more than in winter 2011 – and attracted some 35,000 attendees. The summer 2011 NYIGF ran August 13-18, at New York City's Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and Passenger Ship Terminal Piers 92 & 94.

NYIGF also recorded attendance gains, with a 5% increase over summer bringing nearly 35,000 attendees to market. Despite the recent economic downgrade, attendees to NYIGF actively wrote orders in advance of the fourth quarter holiday season. Attendees hailed from all 50 states and 80 countries, with especially strong attendance from Japan, Australia, South America and Canada.

“Anecdotally, exhibitors reported strong sales and order-writing,” said Dorothy Belshaw, NYIGF director and GLM senior vice president. “Despite negative economic reports, buyers were optimistic, and the resulting energy on the show floor was palpable.”

Busy exhibitors reported solid sales, and in many cases, record shows. “Both the winter and summer New York show are equally great for me now – this is a recession-proof market,” enthused JoAnne Grazzini, of Bed Head, an exhibitor in NYIGF's Personal Accessories division. “I find the quality of buyers to be higher at NYIGF, and they place bigger orders here.”

Nanda Soderberg, an exhibitor in Handmade Designer Maker and owner of Solos Glass, added, “The summer NYIGF has been our best show in the last four shows, and the most successful show of all our gift shows!”

Nearly 450 companies exhibited for the first time at NYIGF, joining a raft of leading brands in categories such as home, tabletop, textiles, housewares, personal care, accessories, children's products and more. The Fair's already robust international representation was bolstered with new groups from Argentina, South Korea, Panama, China, India, Malaysia and Nepal. In total, 46 countries were represented throughout NYIGF's ten divisions.

Highlights of the summer market included the debut of the Gourmet Housewares Show at NYIGF, featuring 150 exhibitors offering high-end resources in cookware, bakeware, and kitchen and bar accessories. Exhibitors included companies who transitioned from other NYIGF divisions, as well as many new to NYIGF.

Overall response was in favor of the integration. “The Gourmet Housewares Show has really been good for us. We have gotten 'real buyers' versus just 'shoppers,' and a good mix of both new and existing customers,” said Katherine Waymire, president of Talisman Designs. “This Show is easier for our customers to work because it is a separate, dedicated area within the overall Fair. We're very pleased with the changes.”

Two new “neighborhoods,” featuring groupings of related merchandise, also were introduced at the summer market, with a new “On Trend” neighborhood in General Gift showcasing trend-forward personal and home accessories, tableware, toys, apparel and more; and the Artisan Jewelry Showcase presenting fine handcrafted works ranging in media, style and price point within New York's Newest.

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