The January Furniture Show has been a must-attend date in the diary of professional retail buyers for the last 32 years, writes show manager James Howard – so what’s in store for 2023’s event, and what role will its international exhibitors play?
The strong heritage of the January Furniture Show, and the reputation it has forged, has made it the only destination for industry colleagues and suppliers to come together to discuss their upcoming year and recent challenges, or to simply just mingle and connect with one another.
In recent years, the challenges facing the industry have not gone unnoticed – most notably with the hit of Covid-19 and the implementation of Brexit restrictions causing both brands and buyers to pivot their way of working.
My team and I have noticed that our exhibitors and retail buyers are having to navigate this uncertain market, and working together to find a solution has never been more important, with the supplier side seeing more caution in the orders being placed, retailers having to source for the next buying seasons on reduced budgets, and import and export struggles, to pick out just a few of the current concerns
These observations have made us more aware of how important it is to unite the industry under one roof and show resilience together. As JFS takes place at the start of Q1, we have found this is the perfect time to discuss concerns, showcase products, and network with every corner of the industry to face these challenges head on.
As one of the major trade shows in the furniture world, JFS is on a continuous quest to support and help the growing community we have built. We thrive on finding ways to navigate these waters and come up with long-term solutions. We have always looked to the industry to be our light in these uncertain times, and we hope that we can be that beacon for you now.
With a keen focus on improving our international offering, with both an outreach to new international brands and facilitating visitors attending from abroad, the show is continuing to diversify. As the challenges of Brexit continue to arise, being able to converse with industry colleagues you might have never met elsewhere is more important than ever, as you will be able to exchange ideas and tips on how best to overcome these new challenges.
I am happy to announce that JFS will also see the introduction of international pavilions, with companies from Vietnam, Portugal and Poland exhibiting at the show. These pavilions are an excellent way for industry insiders to create this connection with countries and companies they might have not seen previously.
As these uncertainties continue to arise, I assure you that the January Furniture Show will continue to strive to be a place where the furniture community can come together to connect and network, as well as being a hub of new ideas and inspiration for the future.