Ly Nguyen, Hinrich Foundation Export Consultant (second from right) with the sales team of Dongguan Boxiang Plastic Products.
Ly Nguyen, Hinrich Foundation Export Consultant (second from right) with the sales team of Dongguan Boxiang Plastic Products.

If you are interested in trade and want to know what is going on in the market, trade fairs are definitely a place for you to gain a lot of insights.

As an international commercial center, Hong Kong is a microcosm of global trade. It is where many well-known trade fairs are held, such as Global Source’s China Sourcing Fair and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council Exhibition, which act as a platform to link suppliers and buyers.

Exhibitors’ target: Find more buyers – get more orders

At the trade fairs, most exhibitors are expected to expose their products to new clients and gain more orders from buyers, increasing their B2B sales volume and revenue.

“It’s the first time I am participating in this trade fair and I am piloting the effect of it,” said Mohd Shahnwaz, marketing manager of Creative International Exports.

The supplier from India manufactures bells, handmade Christmas hearts and wind chimes.

“I target to find 25-30 buyers and have 15 orders from those buyers,” he said. “Our company’s sales target for this year is to increase by 20 percent in revenue, compared to last year. We try to reach the target by expanding our presence in international trade shows.”

Mohd Ammar, CEO of Creative International Exports (left) and Mohd Shahnawaz, marketing manager (right).
Mohd Ammar, CEO of Creative International Exports (left) and Mohd Shahnawaz, marketing manager (right).

Yiwu Styler Cultural and Creative, a Halloween wig and eyelash manufacturer from mainland China, has been participating in the Hong Kong China Sourcing Fair since 2012.

“Our company has found around 20 buyers through the fairs over the past three years,” said Ivy Ji, sales supervisor of Yiwu Styler Cutural and Creative. “We continue to join this fair to find more buyers and orders with the sales target for this year of 20 percent increase, compared to the last year.”

Trends- products and colors

Product color trends of 2016 predicted at the China Sourcing Fair.
Product color trends of 2016 predicted at the China Sourcing Fair.

“For wigs, I think the color trend this year is the basic colors like black, brown and red,” Ji from Yiwu Styler said.

“For bottle cooler and ice pack items, the product trend is hot and cold outdoor use,” said Emily from Yishun.

“For metal key chain and phone case, normally, we base on Pantone colors to design the colors for our products,” said May Xiao, Sales Executive for Dongguan Boxiang Plastic Products.

“For Christmas hearts, I think the product trend will be hand-painted items with intricate details,” said Ammar from Creative International Exports Company. “European and American buyers prefer hand-made items with unique designs.”

“For men’s footwear formal shoes, brogue shoe with gimping and punching design is in the trend nowadays,” said Kenneth Ngai from Dome International Footwear Limited.
For fashion accessories from India, scarves and stoles along with metallic jewelry is seen as in-demand from the buyers.

Product feature trends predicted for 2016 at the China Sourcing Fair.
Product feature trends predicted for 2016 at the China Sourcing Fair.

Understanding exhibitors’ needs by getting in their shoes

Suppliers attending the China Sourcing Fair at Asia World Expo expect more buyers throughout the exposition as they prepare the best for this year’s fashion accessories, home decor and home products show.

Jun Xing Knitting Commodity Co. Ltd., a supplier of mosquito compelling net, has displayed a variety of their colorful mosquito nets.

They expect to get more buyers compared to last year and said, “Hope the sales would be great. Not many buyers are coming as yet,” said the responsible person from the company on the first day of the exposition. The company has decorated their products similarly to last year and expect to have a minimum order quantity of 500 pieces.

A company that produces lanterns, Ningbo Xuanheng Import and Export Co. Ltd. was eager to get more buyers by the end of the exposition. With orders of about 1,000 pieces, the company expects more orders will come from Western countries.

“We hope that the exposition is near to the city and I think the buyers are not very active this time,” said the staff stationed at the booth.

They expect more buyers would inquire in the coming days. The company also expected to get more inquiries and orders in the days to come.

Hinrich Foundation Export Consultant Juliet with the supervisor of Ningbo Xuanheng Import Export Co. Ltd. discussing exhibitor’s observations.
Hinrich Foundation Export Consultant Juliet with the supervisor of Ningbo Xuanheng Import Export Co. Ltd. discussing exhibitor’s observations.

Hinrich Foundation Export Consultant Juliet with the supervisor of Ningbo Xuanheng Import & Export Co. Ltd. discussing exhibitor’s observations.

Aroma Trade produces decorated products like fake waterfalls of different sizes. With a minimum order quantity of about 500 and a price as cheap as $2.5, they also expect to get sales similar to last year.

In the End

According to the China Sourcing Fair Management Office, there were 1,390 total booths in the China Sourcing Fair from April 27-30, 70 percent representing companies from Mainland China, with the remaining hailing from other Asian countries including the Philippines, India, Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand.

Several companies come to the show for the sake of keeping ties fresh with familiar buyers or existing buyers. They may already be at full-capacity with orders but want to keep their buyer exposure consistent, reminding them that “I am still here, everything is still good.”

“We have been participating in the China Sourcing Fairs for the past decade and are able to get orders in every season,” said Mahadevan.P, CEO of Travancore Cocotuft Ltd. from India. “It’s a good platform to meet new clients and to show our new developments to all the buyers who we are dealing with for years”.

One thing is very clear (as observed from the exhibitors interviewed); that to attract buyers’ attention, you have to work hard. You cannot just take part in the fair and automatically get orders. One really needs to have a sense of product trends, should offer new and exclusive ranges of products and take advantage of booth display as a vital method in attracting buyers’ attention. Last, but most importantly, exhibitors should always be proactive when trying to bring in buyers.

About the Author – Sunil Bishnoi

Sunil Bishnoi

Sunil Bishnoi is based in New Delhi as an Export Consultant for the Hinrich Foundation. His main role is to support Indian exporters in laborintensive industries to capture new overseas markets. Through HF’s Developing country export assistance program he is promoting sustainable global trade and generating employment in the country.

He experienced two month training as an intern in Hinrich Foundation. Before joining the team, he had more than three years experiences working in sourcing of footwear and its materials throughout the country and overseas. As an Assistant Manager, he was involved in buying and marketing process for Reebok in India.

Sunil is a Bachelor of Business Administration from Punjab Technical University. Prior to this, he earned a professional Diploma in Footwear Technology from Footwear design and Development Institute, under the Ministry of commerce and industry.

About the Author – Ly Ha Nguyen

Ly Ha Nguyen

Ly Nguyen is the export consultant for the Developing Country Export Assistance Program. She currently carries the mission of supporting small and medium sized enterprises based in Ho Chi Minh city, the southern part of Vietnam.

Ly has background and work experience in marketing department, which helps boost up her capability and skills to offer the professional export consulting service to needy and potential enterprises in Vietnam.

She got the Master degree in International Journalism Studies at Hong Kong Baptist University through the Hinrich Global Trade Leader Scholarship. Before that, she graduated magna cum laude from Academy of Journalism and Communication with a bachelor degree in Advertising.

About the Author – Juliet Shwe Gaung

Juliet Shwe Gaung

She has about five years’ experience as a journalist in Myanmar, mainly focusing in the business filed as well as a communicator for two international Nongovernmental organizations based in Myanmar.

Juliet is a Hinrich Foundation scholar in 2012, having graduated from Hong Kong Baptist University MA in Journalism Studies. During her student life in Hong Kong, she has actively joined many Hinrich Foundation’s activities such as DCSR booth in CSF, Conrad bazaar and Parkview Bazaar.

She has got a bachelor’s degree from Yangon Institute of Economics and also a diploma in accounting from the London Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

About the Author – Mai Nguyen

Mai Nguyen

Based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Mai Nguyen works for Hinrich Foundation as Program manager of the Education & training program. She is responsible for program planning & monitoring accross Southest Asia & Mainland China, as well as buidling and expanding external relationships.

Mai graduated from Hanoi University and has rich experience working with different NGOs and managing community development projects. Mai was awarded a full scholarship from Hinrich Foundation in 2010 to pursue her MA in Business & Financial Journalism at Hong Kong Baptist University.

Upon graduation, Mai went back to Vietnam and worked for Global Sources for a year before joining the Hinrich Foundation team.