UK – For the fourth time, the Sourcing City Marketplace was staged from September 23 to 24, 2014 at the FIVE Show Centre in Farnborough, close to London. Contrary to classic promotional products shows, the Sourcing City Marketplace is not devised as a product show, but rather as an appointment event: The distributors organise appointments with the suppliers in the run-up to the show. Then, at the event a gong is sounded every 30 minutes, which announces that the discussion partners have to move on – in other words speed dating for the industry.
260 employees from 160 distributor companies arranged around 1,800 appointments over the two days of the fair. On the supplier side, in total 66 companies were represented at uniform stands with around 90 brands. Among the trading companies, it is above all Executive Directors and Managers, who visit the Sourcing City Marketplace. Only distributors that achieve a minimum turnover of 250,000 pounds a year are allowed to attend the show. The atmosphere was characterised by a concentrated working climate: Instead of hustle and bustle in the aisles and small talk at the stands, intensive consulting discussions were held. The organiser, David Long predominantly designed the format as a presentation platform for suppliers: “They were to name the distributors they had arranged appointments with ten reasons that made them unique as suppliers. Thus, the focus is being placed on the service and competence aspects of the company, not purely on the products.“
A detailed report will be printed in eppi magazine, No. 102 (December 3, 2014).