Who are the actors of the Fairs and Exhibitions?
Every year, thousands of French companies take part in trade fairs and exhibitions. For companies, this is a unique opportunity to make themselves known and to present their products to visitors.
The exhibition stand is the direct reflection of a company to the visitors of the exhibition. For this reason, companies attach particular importance to it. Exhibitors want to be visible and want to stand out from their neighbours. This is why the choice of their stand designer is extremely important.
There are two types of trade fairs. The trade show reserved for professionals (BtoB), such as Luxe Pack in Monaco, which requires registration under a company name. Then there is the general public trade fair for both individuals and professionals, such as the student or agricultural fairs.
Every year, different players compete for the trade fair market – with different objectives.
Firstly, the venue managers who choose and control the spaces and dates. The challenge for them is to consolidate their strong position in order to maintain their margins. Their main threat remains international competition from other exhibition sites. Consequently, French managers, whether public or private, will have to further increase their investments in infrastructures in the face of extremely ambitious European competitors.
The exhibition centre
Secondly, the organisers of fairs and exhibitions. Their role is to promote and manage trade events. They also aim to provide space for professionals who plan to exhibit and offer their products during the event. For the past ten years or so, they have benefited from an undeniably favourable competitive context, which explains the level of their results and profitability. They must nevertheless face the probable arrival of new entrants (both French and foreign), as the barriers to entry to the organisation business are relatively low.
Thirdly, the providers of services linked to the stand. This category of players remains largely dominated within the sector. Under these conditions, maintaining margins (or even simply the survival of companies) requires a new approach to the profession. Thus, a more creative approach than the « simple » delivery of space is needed. Service providers need to adapt to offer customised services. For example, new materials, more creative designs, the creation of VIP areas, etc. The objective is for them to move from the status of supplier to that of consulting partner, to offer global services in order to increase the average basket and, in turn, to safeguard their margins
In the fourth stage, it is the companies, mostly small and medium-sized, that exhibit their products at trade fairs. They master the keys to success at trade fairs and promote their commercial usefulness.
However, international companies are present at the fair to develop their reputation. In this sense, it is essential for these companies to participate in events related to their main sector of activity in order to consolidate their values. Thanks to these « leaders » of the sector, the show’s organisers strengthen their positioning and visibility.
The number of visitors correlates with the importance of these major players.
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