Largest and Most Successful Show to Date
VINEXPO Asia-Pacific 2012 was confirmed as the biggest and most successful in the history of Asia’s premier professional wine and spirits expo when it ended today at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre (HKCEC).
The three-day trade only expo from May 29-31 exceeded all expectations with 1,050 exhibitors from 28 countries.
More than 15,000 wine & spirits buyers and professionals converging from around the world shattered the previous record of 12,617 visitors set at the 2010 expo. There was the usual strong support from Hong Kong while well over 50% of visitors were from overseas with increases from the Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, Malaysia and China markets.
At the close of the show, VINEXPO Chief Executive Robert Beynat said: “The results from our annual IWSR survey were indicative of the growth of the Asia-Pacific market. Even during our lead-up promotional campaign in Tokyo, Seoul, Shanghai, Beijing, Taipei and Hong Kong, I could already sense that the knowledge and sophistication of the markets had grown tremendously from two years ago, and this was reflected in the business buzz and atmosphere of this year’s show.
“VINEXPO Asia-Pacific has now become a landmark event for the global wine and spirits industry to capitalise on the sustained growth and potential of the Asia-Pacific region, from China and Japan to Southeast Asia.”
Officiating at the opening ceremony, the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Gregory So also said: “It is a great honour for Hong Kong to host this major wine exhibition again. Similar to the many fine wines on display, Hong Kong has all the ingredients to ensure another memorable VINEXPO Asia-Pacific.”
Exhibitors and visitors were unanimous in their praise for the event, commenting on the décor of the show, the quality and look of the stands, and on the increased levels of knowledge, sophistication and spirit of openness to the business of wine and spirits.
Comments from exhibitors included Louis Fabrice Latour, Managing Director of Maison Louis Latour who said, “Being here at VINEXPO Asia-Pacific allowed me to see all my distributors from across the region, and to better understand their culture and their needs.”
First time exhibitor Federico Domingo of Bodegas Castillo Viejo at the debut Uruguay Pavilion added, “VINEXPO is a renowned organisation for the wine and spirits industry and it was the perfect opportunity for us to reach out to the Chinese market.”
Meanwhile, Chairman and Executive Director of Dynasty Fine Wines, Bai Zhisheng said, “VINEXPO is an excellent platform for Dynasty Fine Wines Group to promote our wines to overseas markets, as well as for foreign producers to develop their distribution in China with Dynasty.”
Visitors had the opportunity to share their VINEXPO experience with great wine makers, owners and notable guests including former winners of the ‘Best Sommelier in the World’ title such as Japan’s Shinya Tasaki (1995), France’s Gérard Basset (2010) and Sweden’s Andreas Larsson (2007), along with Masters of Wine Bob Campbell, Charles Curtis, Susan Hulme, Jeannie Cho Lee, Debra Meiburg, Caro Maurer and Lynne Sherriff, and world renowned winemaker and personality Michel Rolland.
Host of seminars at the Academy Certificate programme, Debra Meiburg MW said, “It’s clear from the vast range of attendees from all around Asia that Hong Kong continues to be the regional hub for wine and spirits because of its trade-friendly business environment. There is a marked increase in the knowledge and sophistication of the audience since just two years ago showing that Asia’s progress in this regard has been remarkable. ”
Meanwhile, Jeannie Cho Lee MW added, "Congratulations to the VINEXPO team on their success this year and for providing the opportunity for the international wine and spirits community to congregate, meet producers, make new business connections and share our love for wine in Hong Kong."
The VINEXPO Asia-Pacific Academy featured more than 60 tastings, seminars and presentations by experts and industry specialists. Academy participants also increased from 6,000 people in 2010 to approximately 8,000 participants.
During the closing press conference, Chairman of VINEXPO Asia-Pacific Madam Dominique Hériard Dubreuil remarked, “The fact that we have increased our exhibition space by 25% and still can’t meet the demand is very encouraging. The Asia-Pacific market, while maturing, still has great potential for growth and VINEXPO Asia-Pacific remains firmly the premium choice for professionals in the wine and spirits industry. We believe that VINEXPO will continue to play a major role in shaping the business in this region as reflected in the very constructive feedback from our exhibitors and visitors.”
Technology also played a major part in bringing VINEXPO Asia-Pacific firmly into the digital age, with visitors tasting wines and sourcing information on vineyards on their smart phones while exhibitors utilised QR codes to further provide information to potential buyers. Information on the show was also disseminated via VINEXPO’s social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter and Sina Weibo.
VINEXPO is the world’s largest wines and spirits trade exhibition, staged annually in alternative years between Bordeaux and Hong Kong.
We look forward to seeing you at VINEXPO 2013 in Bordeaux16 – 20 June 2013
Source = VINEXPO Asia-Pacific