The C&I Expo 2017 is over for another year, with suppliers displaying their newest and most exciting products and visitors getting the chance to speak directly to those brands and engage with the sector on another level.
With over 130 exhibitors, there was no shortage of product innovation or creative displays.
The general consensus was that the expo was a great success for all involved. Speaking to various retailers and visitors across the two days, C&I heard a lot of praise and positivity about the opportunities and insights that the show facilitated.
Koologik managing director Murray White said he received some very solid leads and saw an excellent range of people attend the show.
“We specialise in commercial refrigeration equipment for petrol and convenience stores and this year’s C&I Expo has been very good…we have had decision makers and we have sold some cabinets off the stand and we have a busy couple of weeks ahead of us to do the relevant follow-up and I would highly recommend it for anyone looking to come to this show in the future,” he said.
“I would say I have between 30 to 40 very good solid leads but we are talking high dollar value and a fit out could be worth up to $300,000 so there are long lead times.
“The buyers were here, and they were ready to do the business and they viewed the products and they were happy with what they saw and most of them are happy to place orders within the next two months.”
Mr White’s sentiments were echoed by Bindweld Plastics sales and marketing manager Marcel Bernardo.
Mr Bernardo said the expo was great because a variety of clients came through the show and had a chat.
“In particular our easy to assemble floor stand and a lot of our customers have been excited to use this for their products in the market. It has been a very successful show for us and we are looking forward to following up our leads,” he said.
“We have close to 15 to 20 genuine leads from this show. We have seen a lot of people based in Sydney but also buyers from overseas as well – Italy, New Zealand and a couple from China.”
Imperial Tobacco communications executive Michelle Park said one the main objectives to be a part of the expo was to build relationships with key retailers and members of AACS (Australasian Association of Convenience Stores).
“It has been a great opportunity for us to talk about how important the tobacco category is for their businesses and a lot of retailers have been concerned about illicit tobacco and the impact it is having on their business,” she said.
“It has been fantastic to hear from retailers what their concerns are and give them all the information they need to capitalise on the tobacco category in their outlet.
“We have a lot of retailers from all around the country – mostly fuel retailers. This is the second year in a row that we have exhibited at the C&I Expo and we will definitely back again next year. We think it is invaluable for building and maintaining relationships with suppliers and meet with our retailers face to face.
“Some people that we have met over the last couple of days has been the first time that we have ever spoken to them and then for others we are building the relationship after meeting them so well.”
Pacific Optics GM of sales Theo Foukkare said the show had a great turnout.
“We have seen all of the major retailers come through here – we have seen Woolworths, 7-Eleven, Caltex, United Petroleum, AA Petroleum, all of the UCB team, all of the New Sunrise team and we have also seen all of the key independents,” he said.
“We have met some new customers that are dealing with some of our competitors, so it has been a good opportunity to show them everything that we do in the one location and we have had a lot of success. All in all – it has been a great show.”
AACS CEO Jeff Rogut said he thought the expo looked good and was of good quality.