September 6-8, 2013
Orange County Convention Center
Board Demo Day: September 5
Encompassing more than 215,000 net square feet of the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando Florida, Surf Expo's September 2012 trade show, held September 5-8, has been roundly praised as the most successful in years.
Encompassing more than 215,000 net square feet of the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando Florida, Surf Expo's September 2012 trade show, held September 5-8, has been roundly praised as the most successful in years with more than 11,400 buyers attending the show during its three-day run.
"More than 3,000 individual retail companies representing more than 7,000 retail storefronts were greeted with fresh visual merchandising concepts, ample educational opportunities, incredible industry parties and award celebrations, and of course 2,038 booths of the best new merchandise," says Show Director Roy Turner.
"It's gratifying to see thousands of buyers from across the globe come together, united by a love and deep understanding of the watersports and beach lifestyle industries," Turner continues. "While they are unified in mission, their stories (and stores) are as varied and unique as the customers they serve. And that’s Surf Expo great advantage. Nowhere else does the surf, skate, wake, resort, wind, dive, fashion and swimwear retail markets gather like at Surf Expo. For three days, worlds mingle, rub off on each other, and chart new directions together. We're thrilled to be the destination of choice for these businesses and take our responsibility to floor amazing shows very seriously."
Attendance was up, both on the exhibitor and buyer front. "Surf Expo enjoyed a nine percent increase in buyer attendance compared to September 2011, which in itself was a very successful show," says Steven Fisher, senior buyer relations manager. "Cumulative attendance over the three-day show topped 24,200 retailers, exhibitors, media and industry guests. Retail representation included 47 states and 67 countries with strong growth from both the international and Western states markets.
Surf Expo September 2012 Highlights from Surf Expo on Vimeo.
The September show featured 925 first-time companies at Surf Expo alongside the largest and most established mainstays. The new consumables category made a successful debut at the September show and the dive market continues to increasingly rely on Surf Expo. The SUP market continued its growth with 52 exhibitors in the category and 45% of all buyers indicating an interest in the sport.
"First and foremost Surf Expo provides an unrivaled opportunity to meet face to face with all the brands retailers need to compete and succeed in this dynamic marketplace," says Turner. "But we also understand our role of being a gathering place not only for new products and new ideas, but a place where the fun and love of the industries we serve is propagated out to the larger market around the world."
Indeed, the September show offered a wealth of on floor special features and afterhours gatherings, including our second annual board demo day at the Orlando Watersports Complex, the return of the Transworld Wake awards; The AWSI Wind, Kite, and SUP Awards; the TransWorld Business Showroom Fashion show and a special Swim fashion show at the Peabody hotel; and a full roster of educational seminars, autograph signings, galleries, concerts, and speakers.
One event in particular will no doubt define the success of Surf Expo September. The Surf Expo industry party at Typhoon Lagoon, presented by Sanuk, not only was an incredible time for the nearly 3,000 partygoers, it also helped launch the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association's new fundraising campaign: Stokes Me. Fun, wild, slightly irreverent, the Stokes Me surf contest is one for the ages.
The next Surf Expo is Thursday to Saturday, January 10 to 12, 2013. For more information, go to surfexpo.com or to Surf Expo's Facebook page.
Casey Fleming // Director of Sales // RustyThe first goal is to be where the retailers are. That's why we are here. However, we were pleasantly surprised with the number of new accounts we've opened here at the show. There's a lot of new energy that seems to be reinvigorating the retail market, which is great. Account quality seems to be really good too. It was a very successful show for us.
Robert Oswell // President CEO // RoswellSurf Expo exceeded my expectations. We've been really impressed with it. A lot of international guys from all over the world come to Surf Expo: Sweden, Brazil, South America, Japan. We've also been impressed with the amount of exposure we've received within our industry from the other boat companies and magazine writers—it's a good place for brand awareness.
Courtney Kincaid // Director of Sales, Mens // O'Neill ClothingWe had over 100 appointments. That was way more than we expected. Originally, coming into the show, we had about 50 lined up, but when we got here we had so many additional walkups looking for an appointment that we ended up with more than 100 meetings. We're excited.
Gus Cawley // U.S. Creative Director // RhythmIt was awesome to be back on the right coast. Surf Expo continues to provide the perfect platform for us to connect and reconnect with retailers, media, and other supporters of the industry from this side of the country. We have barely finished wrapping up the booth from this showing and are already looking forward to January.
Joe Cartaya // Inside Sales Rep // PrydeGroup AmericasIt's been a great show for us—certainly the Surf Expo staff has been incredibly supportive. Traffic has been incredible. We had appointments booked prior to the show but we had a lot of walk ins as well. We really didn't expect that. That was great and that's where the true busyness came in, where we couldn't even go grab a bite to eat. Everyone seems very serious and focused on business.
Jake Ptasznik // Owner // Spirit ActivewearWe were busy the whole day. It was a great show for us. We had significant, double-digit growth from where we were last year at the show. We opened a lot of new accounts, many of whom were from the Carolinas, The Caribbean and Florida. We saw a steady stream of good quality accounts, so we're really happy. It was a great experience and of course we were happy to win the "Best New Design" award. You guys did a great job.
Peter Coulter // Director of Media & Advertising // Juil FootwearJuil Footwear was able to open several key accounts at our very first Surf Expo. It was a fun and inviting atmosphere that brought buyers right to our booth! This show will be marked in our history as a launching pad for the Juil brand. What better way to get grounded with Juil—surrounded by surf and beach companies that also relish what the earth has to offer.
Linda Crouch // National Sales Manager // SeafollySurf Expo was a great show for Seafolly! We have been growing quite rapidly here in the U.S. and internationally. We utilize the show as an opportunity to work with several existing accounts as well as new ones that heard about our brand and want to place orders for Spring deliveries. Since our parent company is based in Australia, I am always delighted to inform them of the great turnout we have at the Surf Expo. Not only do we come prepared with preset appointments, the amount of new business was overwhelming!
Lewis Abercrombie // Marketing // PranaSurf Expo has introduced us to a brand new customer, opening up a whole new realm of seasonal business. It's a great opportunity to get in front of buyers that we traditionally do not see at the rest of the shows that we attend. Surf Expo is definitely the place to be if you want to get in front of surf, skate, swim and resort customers. In terms of show management, we found Surf Expo to be very well organized and effectively promoted. All in all, a fantastic show.
Matthew Jung // CEO // Wellen"Surf Expo was amazing! We met with a ton of really awesome shops that seemed to really embrace Wellen. It was the first show we've been at where we have written orders every single day of the show and left with paper. Overall, we are excited to exhibit in January and step up our presence now that we know what the show is like."
Vipe Desai // Owner // HDX Hydration MixThis was our very first trade show and the results far exceeded our expectations. The diverse group of retailers from around the world that stopped by our booth and placed orders on the spot proved that Surf Expo attendees are ready for not only new and exciting brands like HDX Hydration Mix but that consumables is a category that progressive retailers are ready to embrace and add incremental sales to their annual revenues. We're proud to have introduced our brand to the action sports community at large at Surf Expo and look forward to being part of its growing exhibitors and attendees in 2013.
Wells Bartlett and Wenlee Fei // Owners // FeifishFeifish has been exhibiting at the Surf Expo since 2010, and with every year each show keeps getting better. The energy and atmosphere of this show is second to none and most important, great buyers come from everywhere. The Surf Expo is a trade show done right.
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