Dubai, UAE: Exhibitors from Austria to Australia, and everywhere in between, are making their final preparations ahead of the Middle East’s largest trade fair for paper, stationery, and office supplies, which opens doors for the 7th time in Dubai next month.
Paperworld Middle East 2017 will take place from 14-16 March at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, and is all set to welcome more than 300 manufacturers and suppliers from 42 countries.
The three-day event has built up a loyal following, with more than half the exhibitors returning this year, while companies from Ukraine, Sweden, and the UAE are among debut players making a beeline to boost business prospects in the Middle East and African market.
“Paperworld Middle East has gained a solid reputation as a highly-effective facilitator and business generator for companies looking to conclude new deals with regional buyers and distributors, which is why the show has grown to be the preferred trade platform for the industry,” said Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of organiser, Messe Frankfurt Middle East.
“This year we will once again witness a robust presence on the show floor by international and local big names, all looking to make an impact with trade buyers from the region and beyond.”
Among the long-time supporters of Paperworld Middle East is Austrian-based Vienna Office Supplies (VOS), which came on board the inaugural edition in 2011 as a Launch Partner, and exports eight European brands across the region, such as Schneider Writing Instruments, Cretacolor artist supplies, and SAX office accessories.
Karl Vytiska, the Managing Director of VOS, said the company has approximately 70 distribution partners across the Middle East: “VOS has built up its presence in the region based on long-term relationships such as with Dubai Library Distributors as our local partner in the UAE, but also with important new contacts established at Paperworld Middle East,” said Vytiska.
“We’ve placed increased emphasis on exhibiting at the show, as it helps us reach over 95 per cent of our clientele across the region, whether they be small owner-operated stores, retail giants, wholesalers, corporate business, or hypermarkets and online stores.”
Another regular exhibitor at Paperworld Middle East is Australian company Calidad, which manufactures toners and ink cartridges for printers and copiers. It will look to make a big impact on a Middle East region which ships more than four million laser and inkjet printers and 19 million toner and ink cartridges every year.
“Paperworld Middle East provides Calidad with the opportunity to meet existing international distributors and potential new distributors,” said Jamie Kenyon, Marketing Manager of Calidad Distributors. “We’re fast to market with new cartridges, and have our research and development in Australia. We’re seeking exclusive distributors that need a reliable supplier in the complex but rewarding toner and inks category.”
Elsewhere, UAE-based Capital Envelopes, the largest manufacturer of envelopes in the Middle East and North Africa, will approach the region’s growing e-Commerce industry with its packaging solutions such as the Gusset range of expandable envelopes and Tyvek Bubble Envelopes in Golden Kraft and White Paper.
Rifaat Bokhari, Manager of Sales and Marketing at Capital Envelopes, said: “The conventional envelope as a packaging solution will always have its place in every market segment, such as stationers, retailers, e-commerce, offices and wholesalers.”
“Dubai has emerged as a major supplier of stationery and has developed an extensive network of retailers, wholesalers and stockists. Transportation links to all parts of the globe, low freight rates, wide variety, high quality goods and very remunerative prices make Dubai and Paperworld Middle East the ideal location for buyers to procure all their stationery requirements.”
Also returning this year is Hoshan Pan Gulf (HPG), the Saudi-based distributor of 50 stationery, school and office supply brands, and a regular exhibitor at Paperworld Middle East.
HPG signed an agreement during Paperworld Middle East 2016 with Arabian Licensing Company, the Middle East licensee of Sesame Workshop – a non-profit organisation and creator of children’s TV programme, Sesame Street.
The partnership saw HPG distribute its portfolio of school items – including glue sticks, school files, and bags – throughout the Middle East and North Africa, branded with popular Sesame Street characters, such as Elmo, Big Bird, and Ernie.
Abdulrahman Ibrahim, HPG’s CEO, said the importance of Paperworld Middle East had changed over time: “In the beginning, Paperworld Middle East was very important for us to engage with our customers from Africa and Asia, because we re-export to these markets from our Jebel Ali warehouse in Dubai,” he said.
“Now we use the show more as a platform to increase our brands’ visibility, and to communicate our corporate strategies and new business alliances. Our largest market is Saudi and GCC, followed by North and East Africa, particularly Kenya.”
Paperworld Middle East is the region’s largest B2B trade show covering the entire range of stationery and office supplies, from school and gift articles, office or household paper, art supplies and creative materials, to toys, party and festival articles, and printers and multimedia.
The 2017 edition will return with popular features including the Green Office Area, where the spotlight will shine on sustainably produced essential office supplies; and the Wrapstar gift wrapping competition. More information is available at: www.paperworldme.com.