* Cleanzine_logo_3a.jpgCleanzine: your weekly cleaning and hygiene industry newsletter 21st September 2023 Issue no. 1081

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If you’ve been a regular reader of my Leaders over the past 19 years you may well have seen me refer to this industry as being something like the Hotel California in the hit Eagles song: "You can check-out any time you like, but you can never leave." That doesn’t seem to have changed over the years and our industry functions, be they exhibitions, conferences, awards events, company open days or press visits, have always felt like the lifeblood of the industry, drawing us together so we can remind ourselves that we work in a great - and highly important – industry, full of wonderful people… People we may see representing a number of different companies or even setting up their own business in competition with the employer they’ve recently left!

One of the exhibitions John Austen and I have always particularly looked forward to is the one set up under the Pulire brand in Verona (now in partnership with ISSA). While lots of other shows have been cancelled since the pandemic began, this is the first ‘biggie’ that bravely went ahead and although we weren’t able to attend because I had Covid, we understand it was a huge success, as you may have read in Cleanzine last week. The show drew over 10,000 visitors, which John and I agreed was very respectable bearing in mind travel restrictions, lockdowns and our natural caution when it comes to personal safety. Visitor numbers at the last event in 2019 were somewhat different, at over 17,000. Is this an encouraging sign of things to come, I wonder?

Have we become so good at conducting business via Zoom or Teams, that we’re going to continue using them, rather than going back to normal? Will exhibitions actually become easier to navigate, because there are fewer visitors? You may recall my grumbles at having to weave around slow-moving crowds whilst navigating a show floor (not regarding Verona, I must add), or being unable to get onto a stand as it was too busy… Frustrating for me but far more so for a buyer tasked with sourcing new products and equipment. I’m told it takes around six months for an exhibitor’s sales figures to reveal whether the show was worth the outlay. It will be interesting to learn whether fewer visitors at Verona actually produced a better show. After all, while a busy show provides a great ‘buzz’, if visitors aren’t buying (or can’t because the stands are too busy), one of the main objectives of paying to exhibit is being missed, don’t you think?



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Jan Hobbs

16th September 2021

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