On 11 September 2016, the 22nd China International Furniture Expo (abbr. Furniture China) and the new-launched Maison Shanghai both ushered in a perfect conclusion for its 2016 edition at Shanghai New International Expo Centre (abbr. SNIEC) and Shanghai World Expo Exhibition & Convention Center (abbr. SWEECC). The four-day exhibition attracted buyers and visitors from more than 158 countries and regions all over the globe, receiving a total of 119,975 visits across the entire exhibition, up 17.75% compared to the statistics of last year.
There was a significant increase in the attendance number of domestic visitors who were mainly from the following “Top 10” cities and province: Shanghai, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Guangdong, Beijing, Shandong, Fujian, Anhui, Sichuan and Liaoning, covering 90% or so of the total domestic visitor numbers. Unfortunately, the visits of overseas buyers dropped to 15,077, a 21.58% cut from the year earlier. On one hand, this is mainly due to the G20 Summit held in Hangzhou which leads to a more difficult application for entry visa by overseas visitors. On the other hand, this is in concert with the situation that China’s furniture industry export for the first half of this year was in the downtrend channel (furniture export saw a 10.73% decrease in the first half of this year compared to the same period of last year).
Whereas, the enthusiasm was far from affected, as the fair was still acknowledged strongly by the international buyers, exhibitors and designers with positive comments to recognize Furniture China as one of the world’s most prominent platforms for the furniture industry. Overseas visitors accounted for 10% of the total on-site attendance. Korea, United States, Taiwan, Australia, Japan, India, Malaysia, Hong Kong, United Kingdom and Thailand became the major national sources of the audience.
In 2016, Furniture China perfectly highlighted the differentiated competition featured by key words such as “premium”, “design” and “lifestyle”, which was also recognized by professional media and experts. Prof. Dr. Peter Zec, Chairman of the Red Dot Award, said that design by China has been keeping him surprised every year, and he would come to Shanghai the next year and even every year in the future as never should he miss such a great furniture event.
Product Quality Is The Core Competitiveness
Furniture China keeps true to form and pursuing good quality as the most important core competitiveness. Hall W housed 7 key National Pavilions from France, Belgium, Italy, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Korea and among others, covering 236 foreign brands in total from 26 countries and regions, accompanied by domestic leading brands in original furniture such as HC28, QM, Norya, U+, Dickson, Expocasa, etc. In the face of intense market competition, the great innovative success of the super furniture event with a history of 22 years in Pudong brought a great surprise to every buyer and visitor at home and abroad.
A Variety Of Trendy Designs
Color was a spot light at this year’s exhibition as many leading brands applied bright colors on their new exhibits. Besides, the application of new materials in furniture was exceptionally amazing. For the new brand Baodian under Expocasa, the Malaysian designer Philip Yap added gems like colored glaze and natural brocatelle and adopted the leather carving technique to make products, making the elegant family-life atmosphere luxurious. Moreover, Design of Designers (abbr. DOD) in the fifth year attracted 167 designer brands/studios, in an obvious contrast to less than 120 in 2015. Thanks to the exhibition, the increasingly improving designer brands such as Madebamboo, Marboretum, and Xiworkshop have expanded their business from single home product series including light fixture to the series covering the whole house, and the “frequenters” like MZGF and Ziinlife are also getting more mature.
The Yoga series from QM famous for its bentwood craft in China also brought a surprise to visitors on site and won the Gold Idea Furniture Design Awards for Single Items. The “I Love Yoga” series is a product of cross-border cooperation between QM and Mr. Zhang Yonghe from FCJZ. They generated a new craft from a new idea, built a new aesthetic image and created a new piece of work that provides reflection on modern furniture design and an exploration of lifestyle.
An Exhibition To Show Various Lifestyles
At this year’s Furniture China, varying lifestyles got a platform to show themselves. In all of the brand halls, international halls, classic halls and DOD exhibition areas in the SNIEC, each brand demonstrated their own life concept. The designers blend the views of the brand on life into their products and showed them to the people from all walks of life with a hope to seek someone who shares the same views.
From the perspective of the development of the home industry, the whole industry is moving along the path of making large household products. For instance, some brands used to making tables, chairs or bedding have not only attracted more customers by selling a couple of tables, chairs, beds and cupboards, but also create an integrated home including living room, study room, dining room and bed room as well as decorations and textiles, which seemingly represents the direction of transformation of each brand. That could also be found in the works of Dickson Furniture, winner of 2016 Gold Idea Special Award of the Gold Idea Furniture Design Awards.
Mr. Liang Shaoxi, Chief Designer of Dickson Furniture, is viewed as the expert of “Home Life” with a sophisticated understanding of modern needs of family life. In his view, home is a place to promote friendship and social contact in addition to a private living space, so it not only should cater for the needs of family life, but also considers the demands of guests.
As the chairman of Gold Idea Furniture Design Awards Committee, Prof. Dr. Peter Zec commented on Mr. Liao Shaoxi: “Because of your creation, we are available to products that lead all of us moving towards the future. They are completely innovative inventions. What’s more, I’m confident that this is bound to make the work of a majority of designers and architects simpler and make our life more interesting.”
“The Sofa of China” Third Season: Searching for Top Chinese Materials
93 sofas from 52 enterprises had participated in the Sofa of China Competition, displayed at booth E8B-D20 in SNIEC. The Awards evaluation was based on an overall criteria from appearance design, function innovation, materials, technology to price and cost performance.
A total of nearly 3,500 exhibitors participate in Furniture China, Maison Shanghai and Shanghai Home Design Week, which has considerably increased 17% over last year. With congratulation to 34 exhibitors who are newly joined the “Ten-year Loyalty Exhibitor”, this honor has been granted to 286 enterprises ever since the year of 2010.
Maison Shanghai, for its new launch this year, surprisingly attracted 24,372 visits during the exhibition. Many people were greatly fond of the fantastic objects inside the exhibition. Home Plus and Modern Chinese Style in Hall 4 had an endless stream of visitors eagerly to watch the Chinese design aesthetic of home furniture and life. Featured events and activities like Maker Future, The Handicraft Year of China and Pop-up Store were designed in particular as open spaces for interactive communication and inspired ideas.
Outlook for 2017
With an improved economy, Chinese people call for a show of high-end lifestyle geared towards the global which influences international Lifestyle. Mr. Wang Mingliang, founder and director of UBM Sinoexpo, also shows his confidence to achieve that. There will be a major change to the next year’s shows. The Shanghai World Expo Exhibition & Convention Center will put its focus of exhibition on home decoration to create a show with the life concept of diversified household products, while the SNIEC will feature high-end contemporary home furniture. In addition, Furniture China will be enhanced with improved FMP level by focusing on premium manufacturing, thus connecting design enterprises and designers with high-level suppliers.
The 23rd China International Furniture Expo / Furniture China 2017 will take place on 12-15 September 2017 in Pudong, Shanghai. See you again next year!