Sweets1The 2013 Sweets and Snacks Expo May 21 to 23 at Chicago’s McCormick Place continues to expand its status as a global resource for products, innovations and insights. Companies from 23 countries have secured booths or pavilions on the show’s floor.

More than 570 confectionery, cookie and snack companies are expected to participate in the expo. Confectionery, cookies and salty snacks sales up 3.8 percent and growing $1.2 billion in 2011, according to the National Confectioners Association, the expo’s sponsor.

Marketing1Strategic decisions are only as good as the information upon which they are based. Currently, most business leaders face the challenge of discerning the quality of information being supplied before determining how best to use it. To forge the way to sustained success and company growth, executives now can and should call for data free of bias and flaws.

Traditional models of data collection and customer research result in a variety of pitfalls, rendering the information obtained only fractionally useful at best. For example, customer surveys cannot objectively measure a store’s performance, because survey respondents are prone to their own bias and subjectivity. Customers do not enter a store expecting to evaluate the experience, and they are thus dependent on recollection and memory.


Fashion2The largest single media event in New York City, the February iteration of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, took place Feb. 7-14 at Lincoln Center. A destination for top designers, Fashion Week is an opportunity to showcase collections to more than 100,000 buyers, editors, retailers, celebrities and VIPs from around the world. The event included more than 80 designers’ shows over eight days.

Producing the event was IMG Fashion, which represents many of the world’s top models, leading designers and influential photographers, art directors and stylists. IMG Fashion produces renowned fashion events around the world, represents some of the industry’s top organizations and federations and works with various local and national governments. This is all part of an effort to create regional and international fashion platforms.

Hardware1As the housing and home improvement industries continue to gain momentum, leaders from across the channels are looking for ways to grow their businesses, and the 2013 National Hardware Show will offer the ideal setting for these individuals to come together and share ideas, find exciting new products, spot emerging trends and discover dynamic best practices.

Scheduled for May 7 to 9 at the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC), the National Hardware Show promises to be bigger and better than ever this year with enhanced product categories, exciting educational offerings and extensive networking opportunities.

Miami2The China Sourcing Fair returns to Miami June 25 to 27 to offer an array of Chinese-made consumer products that buyers and retailers can purchase directly from more than 630 Asia-based manufacturers so they don’t have to travel to Asia to do it. The Miami show will feature exhibitors that produce consumer electronics, gifts and premiums, home products, fashion accessories and garments.

Now in its third year, Miami was the logical city in which to hold the event, according to its organizers, Global Sources. “We were looking for a location that served both buyers in North America as well as those in Central and South America,” says Bill Janeri, general manager at Global Sources. “A large volume of trade is conducted between Asia and these markets, so to meet our objective of organizing the show closer to those buyers, Miami was the logical choice. It is centrally located, has a multilingual business community and has an international-trade focus.”

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