1 year ago

Day 6 - IFA International

  • Text
  • Products
  • Berlin
  • Appliances
  • Consumer
  • September
  • European
  • Washing
  • Panasonic
  • Sennheiser
  • Electronics


Trade News Buyers’ Breakfast Every morning at IFA, hundreds of visiting retailers gather in the Trade Visitors Lounge for the Buyers’ Breakfast, a networking opportunity that precedes the day's meetings, discussions of trends and searches for new products and innovations. The Trade Visitors Lounge Norman Struck Sales Director, Saturn, Berlin, Germany What is your main purpose in attending IFA? I come to IFA to see the innovations across a range of product areas, but currently what interests me most is the TV sector. How many days do you usually spend at the event? I come to the show for two days. Do you plan all of your schedule, or do you leave room for spontaneous meetings? My days are completely filled with meetings. How important is IFA to you? IFA is absolutely the most important annual show for the industry. Rory Wiggin Head Buyer, Pocket Media, UK What is your main purpose in attending IFA? I’m looking for audio equipment, mobile phones, speakers and headphones, with special emphasis on wireless connectivity. Since the price of Bluetooth-enabled devices has fallen so much, we are seeing much more interest, but it hasn’t yet translated into sales. But I do believe that Bluetooth will finally take off in the next year or so What other product trends are you seeing this year? We have been selling a lot of Monster’s Studio Beats headphones by Dr Dre, much more than any other brand, but lately their popularity has meant that there are a lot of counterfeit versions around and that has impacted on trade. We also sell a lot of iPhone and iPad accessories so of course I’ll be visiting the iZone, and I’m interested in seeing what is being developed ahead of the launch of Windows 8, which I think will pose a serious threat to Apple’s domination of touchscreen devices. I’ll be going to see some of the Chinese manufacturers as well. Samuli Seppala CEO & Head of Acquisitions, Verkkokaupa, Finland How many stores do you operate? Currently, we have three shops and a very popular website, and our strategy is to get people to order online, and then come to the shop to pick up their order. That way we maximise the relationship and get the chance to sell them peripherals while they’re there. But because Finland is a big country with a small, concentrated population, we also operate a popular mail order service for customers who can’t get to the shops. What are your main objectives here at IFA 2012? We’re mainly looking for home appliances. How long are you staying, and do you place orders while here? We’re around for two days, and today I’ll be having six meetings. We don’t buy on the spot, but of course if we see something we really want, we’ll open discussions and then dig deeper when we get back home. What advice would you give a first-timer? Don’t come at the weekend, because the stands are so full of members of the public, and plan your meetings bearing in mind where each company is located, in order to avoid walking extra kilometres. Patrice Robyne Managing Director, HomeCine Solutions, France How long have you been coming to IFA and how long do you normally stay? This is my third year and I’ll be staying for two days. What advice would you give to an IFA first-timer? Remember your business cards and plan your time well. What will you be looking for this year? Mainly audio, video and hifi innovations, basically we’re looking for the sorts of products that we’re likely to be selling in 2013. What trends are you seeing that might influence your buying decisions? Everyone’s talking about wireless, but we sell high-end products, where cabling is still very important, because clients like to buy a complete package. And from our point of view, we can source own-brand cabling at very good prices from Chinese manufacturers. What advice would you give an IFA first-timer? Book a hotel that’s close to public transport facilities, wear comfortable shoes, but most importantly be flexible. By that I mean that it can be a good idea to forget the B2B side and just walk around like a member of the public, watch product demonstrations, but most of all watch how the public are reacting, you can learn a lot that way. IFA International • Wednesday 5 th September 2012 37

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