Canton Fair – you could find the next big thing!
With the Canton Fair just around the corner, I know many of you will be making plans to head there soon. It’s a fantastic time of the year, despite being humid, with over 200,000 people from all around the world congregating to Guangzhou.
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With thousands of factories and trading companies participating in this 3 phase fair, it is an invaluable opportunity for you to go and see what’s made in China. It gives you a real sense of awe and you will find yourself walking away saying – what’s not made in China? Many people also walk away, not knowing where to even begin despite grand ideas at the beginning of their trip. Any entrepreneur who attends will see a multitude of potential business ideas, but knowing which one is the next best thing sends them into a frenzy of indecision.
From my point of view the biggest opportunity for attendees going to the fair is the chance to see new products and designs. It’s also an opportunity to learn – learn from other buyers, exhibitors and factory owners.
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What you need to be wary of is the many trading companies and equally entrepreneurial Chinese that exhibit there. You will find these people harder to identify, but their keenness to d a deal will be one give away – nothing is too hard for these guys until its time to deliver, so be very aware!
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My best advice to new attendees to the Canton Fair is to take it slowly, use it as a research tool and be prepared to walk away and think about the next steps. Don’t be in a hurry to hand over your cash before you do your due diligence and make sure your next supplier ticks all the boxes. From experience, anyone can host a great looking exhibition booth with flashy products on the shelf, even place a few impressive certificates on the walls to make it look like they comply with a CE or AS/NZ Standard, but what really happens after you place an actual order is sometimes not quite as you would assume.
Most of all enjoy the experience! I wish I was with you, but can’t make it this year. I am however here when you get back to help you make decisions about next steps.