London-based gift trade event Pulse will move forward from June to May next year following extensive retailer and exhibitor market research.
The news came as the trade show reported a three per cent rise in VIP visitors to its most recent event from 10 to 12 June at Earls Court, against a four per cent dip in attendance. Total figures were not disclosed, but the show usually expects to attract more than 7,000 industry representatives.
Pulse organiser Clarion Events attributed the visitor drop to current market conditions along with a show date that fell directly after the Jubilee bank holiday weekend. However, it claimed VIP visitors increased three per cent, while press attendances soared by 118 per cent.
Pulse also saw a 30 per cent year-on-year increase in new suppliers and designs on the show floor across several new sections including its Launchpad zone. This year’s Pulse featured the first Dragons Den competition in partnership with House of Fraser and retail marketing consultant Mary Portas.
Clarion said the new dates for summer 2013 will benefit buyers by giving them a longer lead-time to source product fro the current buying season, as well as avoid clashes with the half-term break and the May bank holiday.
The organiser said current exhibitors had thrown their support behind the May date and pointed out it was the proven dateline the show had enjoyed for several years previously.
“Design shines through in any economic mood and this sector enjoyed good orders while slightly lower footfall from smaller independents showed retail caution,” show director Raj Gill said.
“The support for Pulse’s new 2013 dateline has been strong as it clearly promotes earlier sales for retailers and suppliers. We very much look forward to next year and our clients can’t wait to see which new endorsements we work with as the show continues to grow in importance.”