Scotland's Trade Fair Spring has announced that it will become a virtual event in 2021 due to ongoing implications of COVID-19.
The virtual event will remain online throughout 2021 to provide a resource for buyers all year. It will be available for them to dip in and out of when they are sourcing new suppliers and new ideas. Buyers have become used to using show websites as a sourcing tool throughout the year so Scotland's Trade Fair online will continue to provide this service. It will be supported by a series of mini virtual events, throughout the year, to provide a focus on particular product sectors and retail themes to help buyers with buying and sourcing.
Mark Saunders, show director says: "Restrictions on indoor events are likely to remain in place for some time yet. In addition, our regular venue, the SEC, as well as possible alternatives, are either supporting the NHS or are not operating as event venues until the Spring. As such we would prefer to remove the uncertainty and concentrate on events we can deliver. Therefore, we are planning to host Scotland's Trade Fair as a virtual event in 2021."
Scotland's Trade Fair Autumn has recently finished after six weeks as an online event and has helped keep buyers and suppliers connected.
Jon Bishop owner of card company The Grey Earl, says, "Scotland's Trade Fair Online was a really great opportunity, allowing me to reach an audience that I may not have found at a physical event. I gained an influx in social media followers and interest in my posts surrounding the event, as well as invitations to stock my work at new shops in Angus, Ayrshire, Stirlingshire and Perth and Kinross.
"There has also been dialogue with independent stores in England as well and I'm currently working on some sample packs to forward on to these businesses. Opportunities like this really help to give brands like mine a sense of legitimacy for stockists interested in a maker's work, but wanting an extra level of approval before committing to ordering. Undoubtedly this opportunity has helped my work stand out and given The Grey Earl a business platform to work from."
Online plans for Scotland's Trade Fair 2021 will be announced shortly and will aim to ensure that Scotland's Trade Fairs remain a useful resource for both buyers and suppliers until the team is able to run physical events once more, which it will do as soon as it is able to.
Further details will be announced as soon as they become available.