The Weber-Stephen display at last year's Spoga+Gafa. (Photo: Koelnmesse)
EVENTS

Next up on world stage: Spoga+Gafa

The trade show people at Koelnmesse have a growing story to tell.

BY HBSDealer Staff

The sprawling Koelnmesse convention center in Cologne, Germany, home of the every-other-year Eisenwarenmesse – or International Hardware Fair – is investing 700 million euros on an improvement project. The mission is not to get bigger, but to get better, said Stefan Lohrberg of Koelnmesse.

Part of the project involves a new entrance to the facility and a conference/exhibit area designed for flexible meetings and networking events, both large and small.

In 2020 a revamped Hall no. 1 will greet visitors to the Eisenwarenmesse show. More immediately, Spoga+Gafa, billed as the world’s largest lawn and garden and outdoor living show, is expecting 2,132 exhibitors from 59 countries for its Sept. 2-4 show in Cologne.

As part of the trade show company’s culture of innovation, Koelnmesse says it plans to expand its “theme platforms,” a term used to describe special areas of interest. “Exhibitors of the future want to have added value,” Lohrberg said, during his visit to the National Hardware Show in Las Vegas. “Certainly, meeting with people is the most important thing, but businesses today want added value.”

Lohrberg said he was impressed with the activity at the National Hardware Show’s Inventor’s Alley, which showcases the creativity for which U.S. shows are famous.

At Spoga+Gafa, those platforms will include “islands” of POS Green solutions; Akku (battery powered) & Smart Gardening World; Outdoor Kitchen World and a “Carousel of furniture.”

Promoting international trade is a major mission of the Koelnmesse group. The first step is to help people imagine trade, he said. “People think that there are more barriers than there really are,” Lohrberg said. “And trade shows are very good at building bridges.”

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EVENTS

Hardware Show hits Las Vegas

BY HBSDealer Staff

Las Vegas — Opening day at the National Hardware Show brought the industry to Las Vegas for three days of networking, learning and, of course, products.

“This year is all about new,” said Rich Russo, VP of the National Hardware Show, in his opening remarks. That includes the show’s new branding, as well as “thousands of new products.”

Some 2,800 exhibitors were on hand to welcome the hardware industry to the show, which runs Tuesday through Thursday. Here are some of the visual highlights from the early going.

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National Hardware Show 2018 in Las Vegas
EVENTS

As the show goes, so goes business

BY HBSDealer Staff

The National Hardware Show is more than a show. It’s a business-building tool for the home improvement retailer — or any retailer who can benefit from knowledge of the latest home products, trends and best practices.

That’s one of the messages hammered home by the organizers of the 2018 National Hardware Show coming to Las Vegas from May 8 through 10.

“Now, more than ever, we’re focused on ensuring every single National Hardware Show attendee comes away with something new, exciting and informative to advance their business,” said Rich Russo, VP of the National Hardware Show.

With NHS’s My Show online planning tool and the NHS mobile app, attendees can build their plans for the 2018 National Hardware Show and start connecting with exhibitors now. When registering for the event, attendees will be asked to identify the types of products and manufacturers they are hoping to see. Once registration is completed, they’ll get exclusive access to My Show, the free online planning tool, allowing attendees to browse the thousands of exhibitors, mark favorites and even search for specific products.

“At its core, the National Hardware Show is the industry’s leading platform to preview, showcase and experience products, and that’s all thanks to the thousands of vendors, including some of the biggest names in the industry who participate in the Show,” Russo said.

One of those attendees is TJ Comstock, owner of Northwest Hardware in Billings, Mont. “I think it’s critical in today’s competitive environment, to take time away from your operation and gain a fresh perspective on where our industry is heading,” he said.

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