International Wine Business Exhibition

Attending Vinitaly is by now a "must" for producers and international buyers. This is confirmed by the number of exhibitors more than 4, 300 attending the 41st edition of the most important Wine Exhibition in the world scheduled 29 March-2 April 2007 and high levels of satisfaction - an impressive 95% of total. Yet even such impressive increase in space is still not enough to satisfy attendance demand - even though this year will see significant expansion of areas for international companies, specifically from Spain and France; confirmation of 2006 attendance is flanked by the "return" of California, Hungary and the "new entries" Georgia and India.

Vinitaly, in short, is the world event boasting the best growth trend for exhibition space sold in recent years - at more than 5%, compared to 1-2% for direct competitors. The exhibitor-contact ratio is also impressive at 30, compared to 11-15 for other exhibitions.

In particular, major organisational efforts focused on professional operators, both Italian and international, through web marketing tools to stimulate 'supply and demand' in advance of the event itself and to optimise contacts during exhibition days - but also to select and invite buyers, especially on an international scale, who will be clearly identifiable to exhibitors.

Efforts to promote B2B meetings also involve the new TASTE ITALY initiative, that envisages contacts between around one hundred companies and 5, 000 selected buyers and operators international, not the least through an innovative formula: wines will be available for tastings throughout the exhibition thanks to a dispenser 'controlled' by individual badges, ensuring personal choice of when and what to taste - yet always assisted by professional sommeliers.

For VeronaFiere, this is already an excellent result - achieved thanks to commitment over the years to ensure timely satisfaction of the expectations of increasingly qualified and demanding exhibitors and visitors. Vinitaly is by now established as the most important international forum for the wine business, yet still retains its special identity as a place for meetings and exchanges of information between operators from all over the world, who enjoy the chance to understand current trends from production and commercial points of view.

The debate topics identified this year concern: research into wine tourism, designed with a focus on the effective commercial value of this sector of activity; large-scale distribution, with particular reference to the distribution of Italian wines on international markets - a critical factor for the 'country system' in general and for wine products; international wine in Italy in terms of quantity, distribution and price bands; an investigation into the true identity of wine lovers, meeting the needs of business and glamour; Vinitaly Tour Focus, with daily appointments investigating commercial questions in Russia, the USA, China, Japan and India; seminar-research analysing Italian wine in restaurant / catering fields over the last five years.

From a logistics point of view, organisational efforts continue to seek improvements in terms of exhibitor layout, with groupings and expansion of spaces dedicated to individual regions. There are high-impact institutional set-ups by several Regions, such as Campania (designed by architect Gae Aulenti) and the Veneto Region with 'scenery' reproducing the architectural beauties of Venice that has in turn launched an increasingly "imitated" fashion.

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