furniPRO Asia 2012 reported that it completed it's recent show with close to 100 global brands showcasing their latest innovations to some 100 key hosted buyers and over 2,000 trade visitors, of which more than 50 percent came from overseas. Backed by strong support from the industry in the region, furniPRO Asia 2012 is endorsed by the Singapore Furniture Industries Council (SFIC), and supported by the American Hardwood Export Council, Singapore Manufacturing Federation and the Taiwan Woodworking Machinery Association.
“The response from the industry has been very positive. Many of the exhibitors were impressed by the fact that they were able to meet and do business with quality buyers from China, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Myanmar, India, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. While visitors to the trade fair were able to see actual live demonstrations of the latest machinery and technology from big brands like Biesse, Wemhoener, SCM and IMA, among many others. These are two key selling points for furniPRO Asia, which other shows in the region have not been able to deliver,” said Mr Michael Dreyer, Vice President, Asia Pacific, Koelnmesse.
100 key buyers from China, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Myanmar, India, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam were hosted at furniPRO Asia, where they met with exhibitors for three days of intensive discussions on potential deals and collaborations.
Mr Burkhard Sydow, Managing Director for IMA Asia Pacific, who showcased their BIMA Cut machine for the first time to the ASEAN market, said “I’m really happy with our participation at furniPRO Asia. Unlike other shows, the value of customers we have met here are extremely high. Not only were we able to meet existing customers, we had good in-depth discussions with potential new buyers as well, allowing us to expand our customer base further in Southeast Asia.”
Joe Chang, Standing Director for the Taiwan Woodworking Machinery Association, who heads the Taiwan pavilion, said “It’s been 10 years since we took part in an exhibition in Southeast Asia. I decided to participate in furniPRO Asia because SEA is a key region for the woodworking industry. So far, every customer I have met at the fair is a highly qualified, serious buyer. I am very impressed with the results from this inaugural edition.”
Mr Christian Klingsberger, Head of Sales WOODTECH, for Wintersteiger, known for their thin-cutting technology, used worldwide in the production of lamellas and sawn veneer starting from 1.3mm thickness, had this to say, “Our purpose for taking part in furniPRO Asia was to reach out to the ASEAN market. We are pleased to have received very positive response for our products from visitors from our main target markets of Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam. We certainly look forward to the next edition.”
Visitors to the trade fair were keen to find out more about the latest innovations and developments in the furniture production and woodworking industry. They were not disappointed as many exhibitors brought their latest technology to the fair.
Mr Yukky Budiman from PT Agape Terang Mulia, Indonesia said “My objectives for coming to furniPRO Asia was to source for technology that will allow me to enjoy cost savings without compromising the quality of my products. I was able to see many technology advances at the fair that met my expectations. It has been a productive visit for me.”
The “Green Forum” and “Investment in Myanmar” sessions on 18 October, co-organized by Koelnmesse and the Singapore Furniture Industries Council (SFIC) also received good response. Each session saw more than 100 delegates packing the room, to participate in lively discussions on the effects and implications of the European Union Timber Regulations (EUTR) for ASEAN come March 2013 and the opportunities in Myanmar’s growing market.
The session on the “Green Forum” received a lot of attention due to the timely topic of discussion. In March 2013, the requirements of the EU Timber Regulation will come into force. This new legislation prohibits placing timber on the EU market if it was illegally harvested. To achieve this, it sets out procedures which those trading timber within the EU must put in place to minimise the risk of illegal timber being sold.
As Mr Tom ter Horst, Communications Officer, European Forest Institute, emphasised in his presentation, the impact of this regulation on the furniture production and woodworking industry in ASEAN is wide-ranging. He feels that it is critical for the industry to pay special attention to the legal issues pertaining to furniture imports into Europe. The source of the timber used in furniture production will have a great impact on the confidence level of the European buyers when making a decision to purchase from Southeast Asia.
“I believe that furniPRO Asia has arrived at an opportune time to fill a pressing need in the ASEAN market, one which has been vacant for some years now. With our powerful global networks and experience from organising the world's largest furniture and furniture production events including imm cologne, ORGATEC, interzum and interzum guangzhou, furniPRO Asia will be a trailblazer for the region, to discuss the latest issues and policies impacting the industry today, and acting as the gateway to the emerging markets in ASEAN.” Mr Michael Dreyer, Vice President, Asia Pacific, Koelnmesse.
The next edition of furniPRO Asia will be staged in Singapore in 2014. More information can be found on the furniPRO Asia website at www.furniproasia.com
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