Woodworking Event Exceeds Expectations

August 11, 2009
Meetings & Events

The AWFS Fair 2009 exceeded expectations, with exhibitors reporting strong buyer interest, especially from international delegations, according to organizers.The woodworking industry event, held in July in Las Vegas, gathered 9,000 attendees and close to 600 exhibiting companies.

“The show was much better than we expected. We came in hopes of gaining market share so that when things turn around we’ll be a few steps ahead of our competition,” says Mike Serwa from Vortex Tool Co., Schofield, Wis.

“We saw better quality prospects and have already closed on some new business,” adds Cami Waner, marketing director, The Collins Co., Portland, Ore.

“The show was excellent for us,” agrees Brent East from Thermwood Corp. “Both the number and quality of buyers were much better than I anticipated.”

Guatemala and Mexico proved to be the two most active international delegations, in terms of purchase orders, according to Ana Druk, who heads the AWFS international buyer program. Buyers from the two countries were on the show floor each day, making purchases of both equipment and supplies.

New features, such as a Green Desk staffed by experts in various subjects, were credited with helping to boost turnout at the show.

“The signs of life turning up in the housing market suggest that our industry really has passed the worst of this economic downturn," says Archie Thompson, AWFS tradeshow chair and national sales manager of Spectrum Adhesive. "Two years from now, we will look back at these tough times and remember how we were able to pull together as an industry and survive.”

In 2011, the AWFS Fair will return to the Las Vegas Convention Center, July 20-23. Information is availalble at www.awfsfair.org.