Future-gazing Autumn Fair launches for 2019 with bold new direction

Autumn Fair, the season’s most important marketplace for home and gift retail, is set to launch its new direction for 2019 and beyond this September at the Birmingham NEC. With plenty of new and bellwether exhibitors showcasing exclusive products, and new theatres and areas debuting for 2019, Autumn Fair will offer unrivalled sourcing and deal-making opportunities for retail’s boldest buyers.

More than 22,000 visitors, and 1,300 exhibitors are expected to descend on the NEC for the show, representing the industry’s best opportunity for last minute stocking-up before the all-important Golden Quarter sales period and beyond for key buying points in 2020.

For 2019, Autumn Fair will occupy a new venue within the NEC, moving to the Atrium as part of a re-edited offering designed specifically to facilitate connections between suppliers and retailers, and make it as easy as possible for visitors to get to grips with the products that will drive profits. Across 11 carefully curated show sectors, visitors will be able to explore the latest products driving sales throughout the busy Christmas period and on into key selling periods for 2020. All gifting categories have been brought together into one spectacular Gift sector, in turn creating the UK’s largest gathering of gift inspiration under one roof. Likewise, the 2019 re-edit will bring together the show’s home and interiors sectors, creating an all-new sourcing and exhibiting destination for UK and international buyers and suppliers respectively.

The new show sectors are:

Beauty & WellbeingLiving
Gift (Contemporary Edit)Gift (General)
Greetings & StationaryAccents & Décor
EverydayRetail Solution
FashionThe SummerhousePlay & TechSourcing

New sourcing zone

With the global retail sourcing and procurement market expected to grow by nearly 12% in the period up to 2024*, Autumn Fair 2019 will look to support retailers in sourcing the very best goods internationally. Sourcing at Autumn Fair is a brand-new sector that will enable manufacturers from key sourcing regions around the world to exhibit new products and showcase techniques to a new and relevant retail market.

Throughout hall 10 international manufacturers coming to Autumn Fair from Portugal, Indonesia, China and India, amongst other nations, will be bringing products relevant for buyers for gift, home, toys, fashion and kitchen and dining. 

Julie Driscoll, managing director at Autumn Fair, said: “The new sourcing hall will bring the best of the world to our door, ensuring that buyers who ordinarily wouldn’t have the resource to commit to costly trips abroad to visit potential suppliers can make connections here at Autumn Fair. Not only that, but we’ll be pushing to attract more international retailers to buy from the UK-based suppliers that are the foundation of our show.”

“We’ve gone to great lengths to ensure that we share the latest trend intelligence for international vendors to ensure that they’re bringing the most relevant products for the UK market.”

Trend-worthy products

Each of the 11 sectors will be welcoming exciting new exhibitors as well as the usual visitor favourites. Across the show exhibitors will be committed to showcasing the most relevant trends for Q4 2019 and 2020.

As the season’s largest giftware showcase, both the general and contemporary edits of the Gift sector will deliver a focus on trend-led products, including wellbeing gifts and scented candles and diffusers, making for plenty of opportunities for cross-buying with the Living sector. Exhibitors such as Eclectic Lifestyle, Bubblegum and Zakka Europe will be joining the show as part of the Contemporary edit, whilst the likes of Yankee Candle, Pukator and Widdop & Co. will be key features in the General edit. After another successful run at Spring Fair 2019, the DesignFirst platform for new and exciting exhibitors will also return to the Gift halls for Autumn Fair 2019. 

Flowing seamlessly from the Gift halls will be the Greetings area which will support many exhibitors’ embrace of both giftable and greetings items, as more suppliers bringing stationary and novelty products to the table. Key exhibitor Cardology will be at the show, hoping to build on their success from last year. David Falkner, Director at Cardology said: “Last year at Autumn Fair was incredible, everything seemed to come together and we generated more business than from any other show.”

In the Living and Accents & Décor showcase, visitors will see a real variety of products on display with exhibitors such Sabirian, an ethical wholesale business with a commendable goal of bringing the largest selection of top quality hand crafted fairly traded unique products available on the market.

The Summerhouse is the home of trend-led products, showcasing a range of well-loved brands from Britain, Scandinavia and other global design hotspots. This is where you’ll find interior accessories, lighting, outdoor accessories, furniture and design-led gifts from top brands including Libra, Morgan Wright, Nkuku, Jellycat Ltd and India Jane.

Elsewhere, across the Beauty & Wellbeing visitors can expect to see a greater focus on organic products and ethical sourcing, with key exhibitors such as Luminara and Matthew Williamson Fragrances. Sevin will also be bringing their unique spa-like stand for 2019 offering an environment that promotes a positive sense of wellbeing.  Founder Sevin Ersin said: “As a first-time exhibitor, Autumn Fair 2018 was an enjoyable and useful experience and helped the business grow. That’s why we’re going back again this year.”     

Power of one

Following the encouraging visitor and exhibitor response at Spring Fair, the Power of One campaign will continue for Autumn Fair 2019. Energising the retail industry to take action against plastic waste and unsustainable practices, the campaign is to champion the UN’s sustainable development goal for more responsible production and consumption by driving small individual, yet powerful steps towards a more sustainable future.

Leading by example, this year’s show will see the trialling of a sustainability rating for suppliers to make it as easy as possible for visitors to identify sustainable and responsibly sourced items.

Autumn Fair runs from the 1st to 4th September 2019 at Birmingham’s National Exhibition Centre. Register to attend for free here: https://bit.ly/2Gfs65y