Al Ghurair inaugurates trade shows
UAE Q1-Q3 2011 toy trade grows 17.5% over that of 2010
Two trade shows organised by Epoc Messe Frankfurt, got off to an encouraging start yesterday, (Tuesday, March 6th), at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, after being inaugurated by H.E. Abdul Rehman Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman of Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum also toured the exhibition halls during the first day. The second editions of Paperworld Middle East and Playworld Middle East are clearly consolidating their positions as effective trade platforms, attracting a representative gathering of leading international and regional manufacturers and suppliers. The opening day also saw a considerable number of trade visitors looking for early deals and business leads.
“Even though it’s only the second year of doing business, both Paperworld Middle East and Playworld Middle East have managed to elicit favourable responses from the industry,” said Ahmed Pauwels, Chief Executive Officer of Epoc Messe Frankfurt. “These events were launched to fill a perceived need in the market and their growth in size and scope in a short period of time underscores the enormous potential that exists in the region,” he added.
Paperworld Middle East, representing the world of office and stationery, features a wide range of international paper products and office supplies from around the world. This year a large number of exhibitors are showcasing sustainably produced products as the industry responds to growing green consciousness among its customers.
Among those catching the eye is Allmark, the universal permanent marker for all surfaces from Dollar Industries. This brand has gone all green. Made up of a minimum of 37% recycled materials, the Allmark is eco-friendly: refillable, recyclable and Xylene / Toluene free.
Another green marker is being presented by Edding, which views sustainable strategies as an integral part of the company’s philosophy. At least 90% of the plastic used in Edding markers is recycled material and 70% of the barrel and cap material is made from a renewable resource.
This year’s event is receiving considerable international participation from ten dedicated country pavilions, which include those representing exhibitors from Germany, Singapore, Tunisia, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Italy, India, Malaysia, Taiwan and China. His Excellency M. K. Lokesh, Ambassador of India to UAE officially inaugurated the Indian pavilion.
Yvonne Bleul, overseeing sales at Paper+Design, said: ” We see this as an important and growing region especially for our types of products. With so many weddings in UAE, our products are in demand. Last year we made some contacts and have participated again to enhance this. We also participate regularly at Paperworld Frankfurt.“
V. Sreekumar, Regional Director of April Fine Paper, said: ” We are the largest producer of pulp in Asia and No. 2 in the world. Our flagship brand is Paper One, which is based in Indonesia. This year we plan to meet new clients from Africa for expansion. Our products are made from plantation fiber. The market is growing and we are also growing along with it.“
Bringing the wide world of kids to the region, Playworld Middle East is enjoying a strong representation of international majors and regional players, all looking to extend their footprint in the lucrative Middle East market. According to figures released by Dubai Customs, the total trade in toys in Q1-Q3 (Jan-Sept) 2011, was 17.5% higher than that in the same period in 2010, an indicator of the high-growth potential of the region.
Attracting much attention on the first day was the White Heart display of baby toys and accessories from French brand Moulin Roty. Also on show is the popular JD Bug Kick, Cool Carver and Air Surfer.
Walid Takrouri, Managing Director for White Heart said: “We had participated last year, Our product Shoulder Buddies has been nominated for the toy award and has proved to be very popular in the Middle East. We feel the exhibition this year is expected to be much better since the market has recovered. Playworld is a strong platform for toys in the Middle East.“
Playwell has brought the German figurine brand Bullyland to the region. Just recently launched in stores in the region the range includes prehistoric and comic figures. Another exhibitor, KR International is also attracting attention with their more traditional Le Toy Van range.
German manufacturer of wooden toys, Mertens GmbH, is displaying a range of attractive products at the German Pavilion. The Mertens range of products is already being exported to 24 countries and they are now looking to establish their presence in the Middle East.
Trade visitors making the early rounds on the show floor included a good number of industry professionals; wholesalers; distributors; paper and office suppliers; gift shops; publishers and printers. Ziad Osmani, who was looking for office products and stationery, said: “I find that Paperworld Middle East is pretty well organised and represents a good variety of manufacturers. This is my first time here and I hope to return to Jordan with some useful contacts,” he added.
Kuwaiti buyer, Tarek Ahmad was scouting for interesting ranges of toys for his store. “The range is pretty good and I’m sure to find a lot of interesting children’s products here.”
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