“Buyers came to Dallas in force and placed larger than average orders with renewed confidence,” said Cindy Morris, president and CEO of Dallas Market Center. “Across all product categories we received positive reports from temporary and permanent exhibitors, with many enthusiastically reporting their best market ever, which further illustrates that Dallas doesn't just deliver buyers, we deliver buyers eager to write large orders. In fact, the show’s strong attendance and steady order writing confirm our position as the premier marketplace for the Central U.S.”
Buyers from all 50 states and more than 60 countries attended the show. Leading the traffic were retail buyers from Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, California, and Florida. International buyers representing Mexico, Canada, Peru, Colombia, Argentina, Brazil, and the Caribbean made up the majority of international attendance. Key attendance increases included new buyers visiting Dallas from across the Midwest (+2%) and high volume buying organizations including buying groups, home centers, online retailers, and mass merchants (+46%).
Increasing consumer confidence and strong retail sales within the strongest economic zone in the U.S. paired with solid growth inside the 5 million square foot Dallas Market Center across gift, home décor, lighting, holiday/floral, housewares, gourmet, fashion, and many associated categories created unique conditions for a January Market where enthusiastic buyers and exhibitors conducted significant business.
Gift resources were showcased across more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space. Highlights included the 6000 square foot expansion of Portico, a leading multi-line showroom in the World Trade Center, and the 4000 square foot expansion of Goetz Inc., a luxury multi-line showroom in the Trade Mart. Goetz Inc. also held a soft opening of their 9,000 square foot World Trade Center showroom with a more formal renovation and grand opening planned for June 2017.
“The January show season was FANTASTIC for Portico. We launched a new division C2 and it exceeded our stretch goals by more than 40 percent,” said Randa Crisler, VP of sales for Portico. “Our loyal customers embraced it with a vengeance. In addition, our original C1 division was up more than 30 percent for the show. Dallas and Portico are thriving! We are excited to see where 2017 takes us.” Inside the temps, hundreds of gift exhibitors created a busy destination across key categories.
The biggest growth category in Dallas for 2017 is home décor, serving both interior design and retailers and buoyed by the nation’s leading housing market and geographic adjacency to the fastest growing cities in the U.S. For the January show, top manufacturers in home décor delivered inspiration with on-point resources including Stein World, which debuted inside new space in the World Trade Center, and a continuing presentation of hundreds of farmhouse vintage resources inside Park Hill. Brad Smith, CEO of ELK Group commented: “We were pleased to bring Stein World back to the Dallas show, giving buyers in the Central US and beyond the ability to explore the brand offering first hand. Dallas Market Center is important for our Dimond Home, Stein World and other brands and we look forward to building upon the success this market venue provides.” Herren Hickingbotham of Park Hill commented: “We had an extremely good show in Dallas. Our sales were the largest ever both in revenue and opening new accounts. It was great to see a renewed confidence among retailers ready to buy.” Vintage and American Made products continued to inspire buyers and also continued to occupy an important portion of the Dallas marketplace. No other marketplace presents the number of artisan, one-of-a-kind, found, and vintage resources inside both permanent showrooms and the temps.
In addition to serving loyal home buyers, the market saw an increase in attendance by registered interior designers and architects seeking resources across furniture, home accents, tabletop, and gift as well as exploring the largest lighting marketplace in North America. The talk among this creative crowd, thousands of whom visit Dallas Market Center each month between shows, was the Interior Home + Design Center, the 220,000 square foot open-daily marketplace to the trade opening in summer 2017. A select number of companies are participating in this opportunity to create their own custom space as part of the largest expansion of home décor resources in more than forty years. It was recently announced that Phillips Collection and Palecek will join ZUO, Visual Comfort, Ambella Home Collection, and many others in the new space. The Interior Home + Design Center is the centerpiece of a long-range strategic initiative to provide enhanced value to manufacturers by serving market-time attendees as well as the growing number of interior designers conducting business at Dallas Market Center each week.
For lighting buyers, the January edition of Lightovation, the Dallas International Lighting Show, provided the largest selection of residential lighting in North America. Resources in the Trade Mart and World Trade Center include all major lighting manufacturers, and January represented the biggest event of the year with hundreds of new product introductions. This show presented new and expanded showrooms, educational programming from the American Lighting Association and two Lightovation keynote presentations, as well as an exclusive lighting industry party and a grand opening celebration for the expanded Spectrum shared showroom. For lighting showrooms, furniture stores and for interior designers, Lightovation was a must-see event featuring more than 130 manufacturers that complement the comprehensive home décor resources available nearby.
Said Rick Seidman, president of Quoizel: “Lightovation continues to be the most important residential lighting event in North America. Traffic was steady, buyers were motivated, and we did great business over the course of the show.” Brad Kleinberg, President of Crystorama added: “Traffic trending earlier for Lightovation at this market sped up the exposure for our exciting launch with Brian Patrick Flynn as well as our other introductions.”
Also in January, a renewed emphasis was placed on the unmatched holiday and floral products at Dallas Market Center. A recent consolidation of showrooms into the second floor of the International Trade Plaza created a neighborhood destination for holiday resources, including Direct Export, Allstate Floral, Craig Bachman Imports, Regency, and many others.
Cathy Malcom, showroom manager, Craig Bachman Imports offered this assessment: “The new neighborhood for floral and holiday was full of buyers, and the show had a terrific spirit of optimism. Overall, we had a good show with steady traffic and solid order writing.”
Inside the fastest growing marketplace for housewares products, a record number of housewares buyers reviewed the expanded neighborhood, which includes corporate showrooms, rep rooms, and shared space for leading housewares lines. In addition, the Housewares Training and Information Group (HTI) offered retailers the ability to buy on a corporate discount plan, and the first Gourmet Gold Housewares Awards, in partnership with Gourmet Insider magazine, took place on Thursday, January 19 in the Trade Mart Atrium.
“Housewares buyers came to market eager to order, including gift stores seeking bridal and baby gifts,” said Patsy Johnson, showroom manager for SourceOne Marketing. “We exceeded last year’s sales numbers and worked many new accounts. Having the HTI buying group here, the Gourmet Gold Housewares Awards and steady traffic every day made January a great show.”
Even after the Total Home & Gift Market concluded its busy seven day run, buyers continued to arrive for the Dallas Apparel & Accessories Market which took place immediately afterward, allowing many gift and home exhibitors to benefit from an influx of new buyers arriving for the second successful market event in January. Dallas offers hundreds of apparel and accessories showrooms across all styles and price points including the largest permanent marketplace of fashion accessories in the U.S. on the 13th floor of the World Trade Center. As retailers create comprehensive lifestyle experiences for their customers, stocking fashion resources has become critical to their success. That’s why Dallas Market Center proudly presented multiple floors of apparel and accessories for two back-to-back shows in January—select permanent showrooms and apparel temps located on the 13th floor during the Total Home & Gift Market and then a complete collection of leading lines during the Apparel & Accessories Market.
“We not only had consistent traffic throughout the show we did great business every day of the show,” said Scott McCartney, showroom director, Craig Clovis. “Most notable were visits from more gift stores seeking unique fashion accessories to help them stand out.”
In addition to new resources, January Market delivered dozens of receptions and parties as well as keynote speakers such as Corey Damen Jenkins and Robin Baron, Libby Langdon, Randall Whitehead, Jim Marvin and Matt Wood. Finally, Dallas Market Center hosted the 28th Annual ARTS Awards, the premier international awards program dedicated to the home industry. The crowd of more than 650 guests celebrated top manufacturers, retailers, designers, and sales representatives as well as honored two special award recipients: Mark Phillips of Phillips Collection, recipient of the Academy of Achievement Award, and industry icon Connie Lineberry, recipient of the Legendary Leadership Award.
“Buyers were energetic, optimistic and added a positive spirit to the entire marketplace,” said Cindy Morris. “This affirmative attitude reinforces the fact that we remain the strongest economic zone in the U.S. with higher consumer confidence and better business conditions than anywhere else. For 2017, as we expand our marketplace and offer exhibitors new marketing tools, Dallas will be creating even greater value for manufacturers and reps seeking access to tens of thousands of motivated buyers who don’t attend any other show.”
Dallas Market Center is the leading home décor and gift marketplace serving the more than 1 million retailers located in the Central U.S. Each January and June, tens of thousands of retailers visit its dynamic marketplace to place orders for new products, network with company leaders, and gain insights into a rapidly changing industry.
To make plans for upcoming markets, visit the Dallas Market Center website and download the Dallas Market App. Also, keep up-to-date on all information by visiting Dallas Market Center on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
About Dallas Market Center
Dallas Market Center is a global business-to-business trade center and the leading wholesale marketplace in North America connecting retailers and interior designers with top manufacturers in home décor, furniture, gifts, lighting and fashion. Inside its dynamic, five million square foot campus near downtown Dallas, nearly 200,000 customers from all 50 states and 85 countries seek industry trends, business education and new products via open-daily showrooms and from exhibitors participating in trade events held throughout the year. The Dallas Market Center website is available at dallasmarketcenter.com.