19 May 2024, 16:10
By William Knight Sept 13, 2016

Giving it 100%

And so September – and London Design Festival – is with us once more. As the attention of the design world again shifts its focus to the UK, we find ourselves in extraordinary times.

Though the Government (at the time of writing) is yet to formally beginning the process of negotiation to leave the European Union, at this year’s festival, conversations will inevitable turn towards the potential implications of June’s momentous decision.

100% Design is the UK’s largest design trade fair and the commercial heart of London Design Festival. Exhibitors and visitors come from the UK, EU and beyond. By its nature, design is an international business sector, with ideas, people, goods and services travelling around the world.

Last year’s 100% Design attracted over 26,000 professional visitors from all around the world with a spending power exceeding £3.4b, and we know it is important to make the case as an industry for the positive steps that Government should be pushing for in the months ahead.

'The design industry and Brexit’ is just one of the outstanding talks taking place at 100% Design this year, and it’s worth having a look at the extensive programme in advance of your visit to make the most of this. We’ve partnered with our new neighbours, the Design Museum, to curate this year’s talks.

The programme combines agenda-setting panel discussions, daily trend reports from leading forecasters and keynotes from the great and good of the design world with a fantastic preview of what visitors can expect when the Design Museum opens its doors to the public in November.

The geography of the festival shifts each year. Alongside the addition of a new fair, LuxuryMade, the opening of the museum further bolsters the strength of the Kensington area’s design offer, and I know this will continue to grow in future years.

“By its nature, design is an international business sector, with ideas, people, goods and services travelling around the world”

Since becoming show director of 100% Design, much of my focus has been on creating the optimum experience for both exhibitors and visitor within which to do business – both face to face across a range of spaces at the show, but also online, hence 100% Design’s partnership with eporta, the key platform for interiors sourcing, which allows visitors to save their favourite designers, view exhibitor catalogues, navigate the show and get quotes, making it easier than ever for buyers to keep records of suppliers they meet.

This focus is also reflected in this year’s theme of ‘experience’. This will be explored across the show through specially commissioned installations, immersive experiences and sensory experiments. Visitors can physically engage with the latest product innovations, establish new business relationships and network with design professionals.

I’m confident that the experience of this year’s 100% Design will offer one of the best editions of our iconic show to date, and reflect the importance of ideas in the UK and how they relate to the wider world.

I look forward to seeing you there.

Media 10’s William Knight is the show director of 100% Design, the UK’s biggest contemporary design trade event, and of Clerkenwell Design Week, one of Europe’s most vibrant design festivals.

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