PENGUIN-shaped water filters. Wardrobes to steam the creases off your shirts and sanitise them at the same time. Face masks with built-in microphones so that people can hear you speak.
These are some of the innovative items that can be found at the Homedec exhibition at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre till Oct 31.
The organisers have created a cosy ambience in the halls by dimming the lights at the beddings and soft furnishings section. One visitor at a booth of designer chairs said it had quite the desired effect as the atmosphere made the velvet recliner that was on display very appealing.
The exhibition showcasing the products of some 130 exhibitors in over 400 booths was no less a show of tenacity by the organising team as they had only 10 days to plan for the whole event, as opposed to the usual six months during the pre-movement control order days.
Nica Leong, senior manager of business development at Homedec organiser C.I.S Network, said this was largely due to loyalty and sincerity of the exhibitors who had supported the event since its inception in 2003.
“The moment the government gave the green light for the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) industry to reopen on Oct 18, our sales team wasted no time in calling the exhibitors who, despite the MCO and the short time given, were able to bring in quality and innovative products to the exhibition.”
She said the entire process was smooth due to good teamwork between the organising team, their suppliers, contractors and venue provider.
"The event having a strong brand position in the market also helped to get the show on the road. “Over the years, the extensive market analysis for the latest updates on market behaviour and shopping patterns has helped us to bond with our exhibitors,” she added.
At this month’s home fair, the strongest profiles are in home appliances and bedding solutions.
The event also found a major participant in the Malaysian Timber Industry Board (MTIB), which brought in 19 companies to occupy 60 booths. “This year we are working closely with MTIB to promote local wood products, to encourage Malaysian homeowners to consider using local wood products,” said Leong.
On buyer behaviour, she observed that attendance at events had been encouraging since the nationwide vaccination rate of over 90% was achieved.
"Though operating capacity is now halved due to physical distancing requirements, spending patterns are showing people are ready to fulfil their home needs after such a long lockdown.
“We noticed that visitors are coming with shopping lists in hand. This shows that they are coming to buy.
"That people are also required to register online beforehand has helped identify those who have the intention to purchase,” she noted. Describing the less than two weeks’ deadline as the tightest one he had to meet in his 18-year career, C.I.S president Datuk Vincent Lim said he was glad to see the MICE industry back on track.
“After going through this difficult time, we hope to move forward and run smoothly by next year,” he said.
He got the idea of holding an exhibition that would cater to all home renovation needs under a single roof after experiencing first-hand the hassles of having to hunt high and low for items that he wanted while remodelling his own home.
“The main draw for Homedec lies in the special deals offered during the exhibition period. Visitors will not get the same offer at the retail store,” he said.
"Through years of experience, the home fair has managed to select the choicest exhibitors because we have taken the effort to find out what homeowners want.
“For example, based on research, we have divided zonings for home appliances, kitchens and gardens,” Lim added.
Homedec currently exhibits in Kuala Lumpur and Penang. There are plans to extend the event to Sabah next year, but this will be subject to future SOP set by the National Security Council.
Visitors are encouraged to register via https://bit.ly/HDKL2_2021PR before going to the venue, to ensure better crowd management on site.
For details, visit www.homedec.com.my