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Blogging JCK: Bigger is Always Better

Day 1 Feedback

May 30, 2008 10:02 PM   By Leah Granof
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RAPAPORT...  There were few surprises on the first day of the JCK show. In line with expectations, the “bigger is better” mantra was prevailing. Despite markedly decreased foot traffic, rumors of exhibitor pullouts before the show (Dave Bonaparte, Group Vice President, JCK Events, flatly denied this noting that nothing unusual had occurred this year), and empty and cheaper hotel rooms at the Venetian and nearby venues, most exhibitors were determined to weather out the financial slump in the U.S.
Many manufacturers noted that economy had failed to deter the super rich—especially those from Russia, the Middle East and the Far East from buying up goods.

Show exhibitors offered up various strategies for dealing with the slow market. Bigger players of high end goods said they had no plans to desert the American market and that they would maintain a consistent marketing approach to prepare for the eventual economic upturn.

Almost everyone agreed that the midlevel manufacturer would suffer the most in a weak U.S. market. One savvy dealer of melee goods said that he makes a profit by only buying in cash and never on memo---preferring to shun the glamour of flashy goods in favor of stability.

For others the show is about face-time and reconnecting in person with their customers and meeting detailed orders.“The days of window shopping are gone. Our customers contact us with very specific requests,” noted one dealer. It is too soon to tell exactly how the show will fair, however, and we will resume coverage on Sunday Day 3.
Tags: Economy, JCK, Russia
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