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Craft and Hobby Blog


Elmwood Park, NJ, USA; February 17, 2012 —The Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) is pleased to announce a 4 percent increase in overall attendees; an 8 percent increase in total buyers; a 23 percent increase in individual buying companies; and an 129 percent increase of international attendees at the 71st Annual CHA Winter Conference & Trade Show held Jan. 29 – Feb. 1, 2012 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif.

While CHA hosted a slightly smaller Show consisting of some 444 exhibiting companies including 62 new exhibitors, filling 158,356-square-feet of exhibit space, the real success was felt with increased attendees, and more domestic and international buyers on the Show floor.

The 2012 CHA Winter Show verified overall attendance is 5,439 representing a 4 percent increase over 2011. Total buyers were up 8 percent from 4,062 in 2011 to 4,385 in 2012 but most interestingly CHA attracted about 300 additional buying companies to the Show representing a 23 percent increase in unique buying companies over 2011. The big story surrounds the surprising 1,660 international buyers from 53 different countries. This represents an incredible 129 percent increase in international buyers over the 2011 Winter Show and the highest internationally attended Winter Show since 2008. “We expect to have a good show each year, but this year the Winter Show was the Best Winter Show in our company’s long history of attending (CHA) Winter Shows,” said Valerie Marderosian, Sr. Vice President of Sales & Marketing and Chief Creative Officer of iLoveToCreate. “We thoroughly enjoy building an incredibly creative booth and welcoming buyer after buyer into our booth to experience our world of creativity. The ability to reach so many buyers from so many different organizations within four days is unmatched.”

“The CHA Winter Show was the best thing we did to launch our new product,” said Andrea Atwater of Shoe Attitude/Kodak Shoe Art Film. ”Exhibiting here introduced our product into the Innovations Showcase and got us in front of key industry decision makers. We were incredibly busy in our booth each day meeting great buyers and making incredible contacts. The Show helped us have a better product launch than we had hoped for.”

“A combination of CHA’s eConnect exhibitor buyer invitation program; the new lower cost of admission to the Show for non-members; a recovering economy coupled with international initiatives in Canada and the United Kingdom have all resulted in stronger buyer participation at the Show,” explained Tony Lee, vice president of Meetings & Exhibitions at CHA. “Next year we anticipate an even stronger international contingent when we are off the competitive show cycle of other European trade shows.”

In 2013 the CHA Winter Conference & Trade Show will return to Anaheim, Calif. January 12-15 to celebrate the 72nd year of the Show.