The International Alliance of Furnishing Publications (IAFP), a global group of the world's top furniture magazines, held its 2013 annual meeting in Shanghai, China, this month.

Hosted by UBM Sinoexpo and held alongside the Furniture China/Office China/FMC 2013, some of the world's leading furniture trade fairs, the half-day meeting took place on 11th September at the Kerry Hotel in Pudong, Shanghai.

During the meeting, there were in-depth discussions regarding the recent development, opportunities and challenges of both the furniture and publishing industries worldwide. Two new members – Meubihome from Belgium and MD magazine from Bulgaria – were inducted at the meeting. This increased the IAFP global membership of leading magazines to a total of 19. In addition, the new executive committee for 2013-2015 was also elected at the meeting.

The following is a list of new office bearers for the period covering 2013-2015: chairman - Dr Casey Loo, publisher and editor-in-chief, Furniture & Furnishing International, Singapore/Malaysia; vice-chairman - Zeki Yucel, general co-ordinator, Furniturk magazine, Turkey; secretary general - Imre Zilahi, publishing editor, Mobila, Romania; honorary treasurer - Takayoshi Nagashima, president, The Home Living, Japan; marketing and PR director - Helmut Merkel, chief editor, MoebelMarkt, Germany; and special advisors - Pedro Ruben Romero, editor, Moblaje, Mexico, and Joseph F Carroll, international marketing consultant, USA.

Members: Australia  - Furnishing International; Belgium - Meubihome; Bulgaria - MD magazine; Brazil - Mobile Logista; China - China Furniture; France - Le Courrier du Meuble; Germany - MoebelMarkt; India - Index Furniture; Italy - GDA; Japan - The Home Living; Mexico - Moblaje; Romania - Mobila; Russia - Mebelny Biznes; Singapore/Malaysia - Furniture & Furnishing International; Republic of Korea - Gagu Guide; Taiwan - Taiwan Furniture; Turkey - Furniturk; UK - Furniture News; and US - Furniture Today.

"It's an invaluable relationship for everyone involved"

Dr Casey Loo took over the helm from immediate past chairman, Pedro Ruben Romero. According to Casey, "the IAFP is a tight-knit family comprising the world's premier furniture trade magazines. Under the leadership of former chairmen such as Joe Carroll, formerly publisher of Furniture Today USA until his retirement and Pedro Romero, our immediate past chairman, the IAFP made great progress. Since its formation 16 years ago, the alliance now has a global network covering major furniture markets around the world.

“I am honoured to have been elected its new chairman. Supported by a highly capable executive committee and many active members, I am confident we will be able to further our objective for greater exchange of information between members and markets, which is crucial to help furniture businesses, agencies and organisations for effective decision-making, as well as our larger goal to facilitate the positive development and growth of the international furniture trade and the global economy.

"In addition, in my other capacity as advisor to the Council of Asian Furniture Associations (CAFA), I hope to be able to link and bring both IAFP and CAFA to work together. Asia has grown to become not only the world's largest furniture manufacturing region, it has also become one of the most attractive markets for furniture products. With the official membership of the China National Furniture Association in CAFA this year, CAFA has the power to help integrate the industries and markets in the region and to push for greater collaboration around the globe. IAFP would be a strategic partner to industry agencies and associations such as CAFA to enable them a more global perspective and world view of the furniture business and establish vital connections worldwide."

Paul Farley, editor of Furniture News, adds: "Since joining the IAFP, Furniture News has been able to access unrivalled information when it comes to global markets, which has strengthened the magazine significantly. It has also helped make our approach to publishing more effective, and provided advertisers with touch-points around the world where needed. It's an invaluable relationship for everyone involved."