From 16-19th November, Porte de Versailles in Paris hosted the second edition of Espritmeuble, attracting French and other European visitors. With an impressive display of innovative product presenting the potential of the French furniture market, a positive attitude was apparent at the fair, matching the enthusiasm of its debut. Victoria Noakes paid the show a visit ...
With its focused nature and international appeal, 2013’s Espritmeuble was met with optimism from the trade, which was partially reflected in a 50% increase in visitors – amounting to a healthy footfall of 8477 – and a higher level of interest from exhibitors, drawing in almost 190 industry names. These encouraging figures for a fair merely two years old represent the strong support of manufacturers and distributors for this dedicated industry event.
Starting out with a clear objective to target more international visitors – in order to make Paris an increasingly significant destination in European buyers’ schedules – Espritmeuble identified key high-potential markets including UK, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Russia and Switzerland, and was rewarded with a larger number of foreign visitors.
To meet the current challenges of a market undergoing profound changes, Espritmeuble’s aim was to provide a relaxed, customer-friendly environment in which networking and the creation of long-lasting relationships between manufacturers and distributors could flourish. This careful attention to detail did not go unnoticed by visitors and exhibitors, many of which cited the show as meeting their expectations.
The show also hosted a programme of daily presentations and conferences which aimed to address issues affecting the trade, take a closer look at the current challenges for the sector, discuss how the industry will respond to these obstacles and anticipate future trends and developments.
Visitors’ initial feedback has shown their appreciation for the fair and the fact that more exhibitors were in attendance, presenting a much larger and diversified offer than before. The event clearly represents the furniture industry’s diversity and capability to innovate, and provides the French market with welcome visibility within the wider European furniture sector.
Displaying a wide range of product, including bedding, chairs, sofas and sofa beds, soft furnishings and accessories, exhibitors made an impression with high-quality, strikingly-designed stands, giving the show a professional and creative feel. Influential UK and European industry players such as Natuzzi, Nolte Mobel, Hima, Sealy, Aleal, Fama and Celio were present, in addition to many big names and less well-known companies in the French market.
With a concentration on the modern and contemporary home furniture offering, a vast array of furnishing product in the medium price segment was highlighted. The upholstery sector and the mattress industry were well represented by important brands such as Dunlopillo, Simmons, Brianform and Pirelli.
“The importance of having an event exclusively dedicated to the furniture industry is that it offers buyers a single, central venue in which to discover new products, new collections and major innovations without being distracted by items too remote from their core business, such as small home decor products. This is a great time saver for the industry,” says Gilles Silberman, vice-CEO of Cauval Industries – one of the largest furniture manufacturers in France – and founding member of the event.
Organisers of the fair are already in discussion with new exhibitors for the 2014 edition, and previous exhibitors are said to be keen to return. It is hoped that the next event will attract further attention from international buyers, consequently bolstering its impact on the European market. This year’s fair will be held from 6-9th December at the same venue.