The number of attendees and exhibitors at APCS continued to decline this year, perhaps fueled by SARS fears. Will the 2004 event in Thailand fare any better?
Trade shows have been on a downward trend during the past few years, but one of the bright spots has been in China and other growing nations in Asia. The Asia-Pacific Coatings Show (APCS) has—for the past number of years—been the only major show outside of the “big three” of Japan, China and India. While the show’s numbers have been on the decline for years, the 2003 event, held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, May 21-22, was especially hard hit as attendees and exhibitors were unable to travel due to the SARS epidemic, or possibly used the outbreak as an excuse to not travel to the show.
Despite a number of exhibitors cancelling at the last minute, show organizer dmg world media was forced to press on with the event. As a result, APCS saw its attendance dwindle to just 1,440 visitors during the three-day exhibition. In a statement, dmg said the event was “well attended” in term of “quality visitors,” and those who did make the trip came from 25 different countries, including Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, China and Korea.
However, many exhibitors and attendees Ink World spoke with were disappointed. One attendee, who preferred not to be named, called the show a“complete failure.”
A number of attendees reportedly asked dmg to postpone or cancel the show. A statement from dmg sent to exhibitors approximately one month before the exhibition said the show would be a success.
And as is the case with any trade show, there were exhibitors pleased with how the event panned out. In a letter to dmg, Tony Vets, sales manager with J. DeVree & Co., a Belgium-based equipment manufacturer that exhibited at APCS, said he was “glad” his company didn’t cancel. “We had one of best shows of the last years, both in terms of quantity and quality of the visitors to our booth.”
Organizers also relayed the comments of David Woof, a coatings technologist with Thomas Swan. “We were quite pleased,” he said. “We had a few decent customers and some new leads. It was promising.”
Time will tell how well dmg’s next Asia-Pacific Coatings Show will fare. The location should help. APCS 2004 will be held June 2-3, 2004 in Thailand, a favorite destination for many in the industry.
Third APCS Awards
During the exhibition, dmg hosted the third Asia Pacific Coatings Awards ceremony. This year’s winners were Isimat Japan (environmental award), Malvern Instruments (innovative product award), Osi Crompton (best conference paper) and KMML (marketing campaign of the year).