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Bumper Time at JFS2017

The 2017 January Furniture Show (Birmingham NEC, January 22 – 25) proved to be another successful outing with thousands of visitors enjoying 5 packed halls, with over 500 exhibitors, affirming the importance of the show to the UK furniture industry.

Laraine Janes, event co-director, was delighted with the show, stating: “There’s a significant momentum to the event; visitors and exhibitors were impressed with the standard of product and presentation, resulting in orders taken at the show reaching record levels. This has been reflected in the number of rebookings we have received so far.  We are already looking forward to a sell-out show in 2018.”

Many exhibitors reported record order days and the successful introduction of new ranges. Collaborations were a stand-out feature and shown at their best with the Whitemeadow and Conran tie-up in the Content by Conran collection, and the Tetrad and Ralph Lauren alliance with the new Lauren collection, also launched at the show.

Collaborations featured elsewhere with ex footballer turned Hollywood star Vinnie Jones appearing in the Flooring Showcase to promote the new Deacon Jones collection in a joint venture between him and Crown Floors. Football also featured in Hall 5 with the FA Cup making an appearance and ex Manchester United and England footballer Bryan Robson cheerfully signing autographs and posing for photographs; both were there to promote the Mlily partnership supplying mattresses to Manchester United.

As well as collaborations, the lively show was full of texture combinations with 1000s of new products launched and well received in every sector.

“We’ve had a brilliant show,” said Nichola Bell, sales director of upholstery giant Westbridge. “We always wonder before the show if we’ve got the right product, if the people will come and if they’ll buy. And we have got the right product, they have come and they did buy!”

Notable at this years show was the number of high-end European exhibitors. Hall 2 was bursting with Scandinavian cool, Italian chic and German engineering expertise.

The show organisers have confirmed that the 2018 show is likely to see other high-end European companies join the sophisticated Hall 2 line-up.

Lukas Cornelius Lazzari from Tomasella and Ego Italiano said: “This is our third time at the show and we keep coming back as we’ve seen how it’s grown. We have found there have been lots of quality visitors and our new products have been well received.”

Interior furnishings and decorative accessories in Hall 3 again proved to be a huge draw for visitors, with Gallery Direct and Culinary Concepts both reporting bumper order days. Volume and Contract in Hall 4 treated visitors to a wealth of new ranges, both VIDA Living and Global Home had large-scale stands full of new products and German majors Nolte and Weimann reported excellent show days. Hall 5 saw Buoyant, among others, bustling with buyers whilst bed companies reported 4 days of great selling.

As the doors closed, fellow show director Theresa Raymond expressed her delight and commitment to deliver another quality show in 2018 saying, “This show works; it works for the exhibitors and it works for the buyers from every sector of the furnishing industry who come to see what’s new and to buy. Many exhibitors have outdone themselves this year with jaw-dropping stands and a high standard of products. We have received many highly complimentary comments from buyers who attended the show and it will be back next year delivered by the same dedicated team who are committed to making the 2018 show bigger, better and even more successful.”