The fifth edition of the Print Show took place from September 17-19 at the NEC in Birmingham. Total attendance figures for this year stood at 5,445, with exhibitors reporting steady footfall on their stands across the three days
As was the case with previous years, the floorplan included some of the biggest names in global print. HP, Epson, Vivid Laminating Technologies, RISO and Morgana Systems all had their own stands at the show, while Mimaki was represented by Hybrid Services, Xerox by Xeretec, and Ricoh with Smart Print.
Event Director Chris Davies said: “We’re delighted with the success of this year’s show. It’s been a difficult 12 months for everyone in the industry, with ongoing uncertainty over Brexit having an impact on confidence.
“However, seeing so many visitors speaking with exhibitors from right across the print market, shows there is still plenty of activity and confidence in print. There was also plenty of business done on the show floor, which shows that visitors still have enough demand from their own customers to warrant spending money on new kit.”
This year, many eyes were on a brand new feature, which saw three celebrities take part in special Q&A sessions with visitors. Explorer and adventurer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, boxing legend Chris Eubank and celebrity chef Gregg Wallace were in attendance, chatting with and signing autographs for visitors.
Sir Ranulph entertained visitors and exhibitors with anecdotes of his incredible career, including an interesting tale involving explosives and a famous film. Eubank gave an emotional account of his unforgettable bout with Michael Watson, while Wallace gave an insight into his journey from the market stall to running his own business empire.
“It was such a privilege to be able to welcome three famous faces as part of the celebrations for our fifth year anniversary,” Davies said. “It’s something we’ve not done before but it proved to be a huge success, with visitors and exhibitors alike able to chat with the celebrities and have their photo taken with them.”
A number of major exhibitors have come forward to praise The Print Show 2019, with many paying tribute to organisers for bringing in high quality visitors from a range of backgrounds.
Exhibitors have been busy going over the leads they took at the show and following up with visitors who placed orders at the NEC.
Hybrid Services had a busy three days, staging UK, European and worldwide Mimaki launches on its stand.
Chief Operations Manager Brett Newman, said: “There was terrific interest in the Mimaki SWJ-320EA super-wide format solvent printer and the Mimaki JV300Plus series printer and CJV300Plus printer/cutter which were debuted at the show, as well as the other latest printing technology from Mimaki that was featured on the stand.”
Elsewhere, Soyang Europe and Blue Castle Group used the 2019 edition as a launch platform for the new PVC Banner Recycling Scheme. Kerrie-Anne Moore, Sales and Marketing Manager, Soyang Europe, said the show was the perfect opportunity to showcase the initiative to the market.
She said: “The interest in PVC recycling has been incredible and we are still working our way through all the leads. We were not surprised at all that there was so much interest from printers, print management companies and even competitors of ours to discover more about how we have managed to get to this stage.”
Ben Crosby, Business Development Director, Blue Castle, added: “We had plenty of interest from visitors. As our scheme requires site visits to determine viability, no sales were made over the three days but we did gain over 100 quality leads from across the print industry, which we were delighted with.
“We were also delighted with exhibiting companies coming to us at the end of the show with their PVC waste, which we are recycling for them.”
HP was also keen to praise The Print Show. Phil Oakley, Regional Business Manager, large-format printing at the HP Graphics Solutions Business, said: “I was very pleased with HP’s presence at the show. Our marketing team did a fantastic job, positioning us well and creating an attractive stand for delegates.
“The organisers of the show also deserve credit for building a truly great experience through the use of genuinely interesting guest speakers, the Golden Ticket feature, book signings and more. I think next year, we as vendors and exhibitors at the show have a responsibility to match that level of creativity and wow attendees.”
All change for 2020
Organisers of The Print Show have revealed that the 2020 edition will switch to a run of Sunday to Tuesday. The dedicated print event will remain at the NEC in Birmingham, providing both exhibitors and visitors with a gathering point central to the whole of the UK, and will take place from September 27 to 29 in Halls 7 and 8.
By making the switch, organisers say that the event will become more flexible for members of the industry who may not be able to get out of the office to visit on a weekday to attend.
“We’ve had great success staging the show during the working week, but the fact is that some members of the industry aren’t able to visit as they are too busy in the office or workshop in the week,” Davies said.
“By moving the opening day to a Sunday, we’re opening up The Print Show to a whole new audience and becoming much more flexible. This is really important to us as we seek to evolve the show year on year.”
First name on the floorplan
Davies continued: “From our initial talks with exhibitors, the move to a Sunday to Tuesday event will suit all parties and offers something completely different to visitors.”
The move has seemingly proved a hit already, with finishing technology leader Vivid Laminating Technologies booking its stand for The Print Show 2020. Vivid is the first name on the floorplan for next year. A familiar name to visitors, the firm has exhibited at each edition of the show since its launch in 2015.
“Seeing so many visitors speaking with exhibitors from right across the print market shows there is still plenty of activity and confidence in print.,” Davies commented.
“On the back of another busy show this year, we’ve had an incredible response from exhibitors, with plenty saying they are looking to book for the show next year. We look forward to revealing even more exciting changes to The Print Show in the coming weeks and months,” he concluded.