Vinexpo Asia-Pacific, the professional wine and spirits exhibition in Asia, broke all records at its 6th show in Hong Kong from 27th to 29th May 2014.
The feedback on this exhibition from both visitors and exhibitors is very positive and proves that Vinexpo Asia-Pacific is leader in its market. Hong Kong is still a privileged entry point for the Chinese market and has clearly been accepted once and for all as a hub in Asia for the wine and spirits industry.
“This market is more sophisticated than ever; you could feel it in the business done as well as in the overall atmosphere of the exhibition”, explained Vinexpo’s Chief Executive Officer, Guillaume Deglise.
Buyers from all over Asia-Pacific
Vinexpo Asia-Pacific 2014 attracted 16,778 Asian buyers i.e. 6.3% more visitors than in 2012.
The quality of the visitors and the contacts made was unanimously recognised by the exhibitors: “We’ve been at Vinexpo Asia-Pacific since 2008 and we can still see how the visitors’ wine knowledge is increasing. Vinexpo is the best opportunity available to us to meet key professionals in the industry in Asian markets”, commented Rodolfo Maralli, Sales and Marketing Director of Banfi (Italy).
The 5,898 buyers, 3% more than in 2012, who came from mainland China to widen their portfolio of brands, confirmed that Vinexpo Asia-Pacific satisfies their needs. As Terry Tang, General Manager of the wine department of Shanghai Jin Feng Wine Co. Ltd. put it: “The quality of the exhibitors is excellent. We found all the producers or traders, who really interest us. On top of this, the Academy and its master classes are top quality. This is the most professional exhibition I have ever attended. We are really satisfied with the organisation”.
7,064 Hong Kong trade professionals, representing 42% of all visitors, who had been very carefully selected, also walked the aisles of the exhibition. Loyal to Vinexpo Asia-Pacific since 2006, the recognised wine educator Peter Kwong, who owns Talent State Asia liked the new features of the exhibition this year: “I can see that the exhibition has made important new steps forward. The international producers are widely represented and there is more space and more services for visitors.”
Among the top 6 visiting nations after Hong Kong and China came Taiwan with 705 visitors, a 10.6% increase, Korea with 370 visitors, down 0.5%, Japan with 355 professionals, up 6.3% and Singapore with 341 visitors, up 20.5%.
The striking feature of the 6th Vinexpo Asia-Pacific was the increasing numbers of south-east Asian visitors with more and more Thai visitors (up 26.25%), as well as 15.5% more visitors from Malaysia, 25.2% more from Vietnam and 19.27% more from Indonesia.
Exhibitors from 34 producing nations
In three days, 1,300 exhibitors from 34 countries displayed the widest range of wines and spirits ever seen under one roof in Asia-Pacific. “Hong Kong is definitely the right place to be and Vinexpo Asia-Pacific is a terrific springboard helping us penetrate Asian markets”, explained Philippe Coste, President of Cognac Meukow.
The SPIRITUAL concept bar designed by Vinexpo was a high-profile new addition this year. Celebrity mixologists from the leading Hong Kong hotels, exploited the general popularity of cocktails to tempt visitors to try a different way to get to know spirits.
The Vinexpo Academy
In parallel with the exhibition, a well-filled programme of 54 tastings, conferences and seminars was delivered by world-acclaimed speakers.
The China Wine Forum, focussing on the future of the Chinese wine market, introduced four well-known panellists: Judy Chan from Grace Vineyards, Don St Pierre Jr from ASC Fine Wines, Dixon Yuan of yesmywine.com and Simon Tam of Christie’s.
The resounding success of the blind tasting commented by Best Sommelier in the World 2013 Paolo Basso, is evidence of how sophisticated the tasting skills and knowledge of Asian professionals have become.
Substantial media coverage
520 journalists, 8.3% more than in 2012, from the Asian written and audiovisual media covered the exhibition as did many correspondents of specialist wine and spirits reviews and the general press, who travelled from Europe and the US.