HIGH POINT, N.C.–High Point Market Authority reported its buyer registration was stable for spring market, despite the tumultuous economy and a wave of recent bankruptcies in the domestic home furnishings retailing and manufacturing sectors.
With a boost from increases in international delegations, interior designers and first-time buyers, the number of buyers registered for the April High Point Market was 47,168, compared with 47,109 buyers registered in spring 2007, according to Brian D. Casey, president and chief executive officer of the HPMA.
On the international side, 1,743 buyers registered from around the globe, almost double the number of international registrations last spring, Casey said. HPMA also reported a “healthy” increase (4,139) in first-time buyers to High Point, as well as the return of 2,081 buyers who have not attended market in the past two years or more. The interior design contingent also grew from 15,595 designers registered this market, an increase of 4,542 individuals over spring 2007, the authority reported.
“These numbers tell us that our marketing efforts are working and that buyers across the industry are responding positively to all of the improvements that have been implemented throughout the past two years,” Casey said. “In light of these figures, and the positive feedback we received both during and after the event, it’s clear that the High Point Market remains the fashion leader and the primary source for new product in the home furnishings industry.”
The balance of spring market registrants was comprised of exhibitors and sales representatives, suppliers and market guests (32,927), for a grand total of 82,095.