U.S. Sellers Praise Activity at Heimtextil
Carole Sloan -- Gifts & Dec, January 16, 2006
Frankfurt, Germany — Despite some pre-show apprehension, American exhibitors at Heimtextil here last week were high in their assessment of the results. It wasn't just the amount of written orders, but also the number of new faces visiting their stands. Traffic, most agree, was down, and the number of exhibitors also dropped by several hundred.
“It was fabulous — absolutely fabulous,” exclaimed Tom Leahy, vp, Waverly. “Wednesday and Thursday we were flat out all day. Romantic Overtures was a monster hit. I was amazed at the number of people looking for prints.”
Leahy added, “Some 60 to 70 percent were new faces — and about the same number were interested in wallcoverings.”
“We were pleased,” said Allen Barwick, president and ceo of first-time exhibitor Shuford Mills. “The decision makers were here and there was lots of interest in our outdoor fabrics.”
“It's been outstanding,” said Tom Muzekari, vp, Quaker. “The Middle East is here in force. And our new location is so much better. We're with competitors on our level.”
“It was fabulous — the best ever,” said Mike Harris, president of Faribault. “We're doing business now in countries we've never done business with: Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and Europe.”
Ramatep, another first time exhibitor, “made lots of contacts, wrote orders,” said Dominique Todeschini. “It's a different global makeup from the Javits gift show. We'll be back next year.”
“It was a great show. We saw quality buyers from all over the world — especially Eastern Europe,” said Bob Harrisburg, president, Bosal Foam and Fibre. “We also saw a lot of American buyers.”
Somewhat less enthusiastic but still positive was Lee Silberman, senior vp, Duralee, who said, “I can't complain. We saw a couple of new customers and our major distributors still come.”
“We're pleased, very happy,” Stan Fradin, president of Roc-lon, related. “We saw some new faces, mostly from the Middle East, which we haven't had for a number of years.”
Howard Sackelman, vp, Dukane Fabrics, was pleased with the show but wished for more customers for closeouts.
Jim Leonard, deputy assistant secretary for textiles and apparel at the U.S. Department of Commerce, remarked, “I was pleasantly surprised. I haven't heard any negatives. Exhibitors wrote orders; there was good networking.”
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