26th KNOWSHOW Tradeshow Returns to Vancouver With a Twist, July 17-18 2018

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By Mario Toneguzzi

KNOWSHOW is entrenched as Canada’s premiere lifestyle trade show in Vancouver - an engaging B2B marketplace where leading lifestyle fashion brands unveil their seasonal products to Canadian retailers.

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The Spring/Summer edition of the bi-annual show, produced by Cube Business Media, takes place July 17-18 at the Vancouver Convention Centre, it connects hundreds of unique retailers and the brands that they buy from in a concentrated showcase of upcoming trends, styles and products.  This summer’s event is followed by the Fall/Winter edition on January 16-18, 2019.

Perry Pugh, General Manager and one of the founders of KNOWSHOW, said the tradeshow began in 2006.

“We are a retail trade event where brands and buyers meet. It’s largely been a buying show for the last 13 years but we’re now creating an all-encompassing retail and brand-based platform where people meet fashion influencers, buy next season’s products and also expand their shop’s ability to market in a changing retail landscape,” he said referring to this year’s addition of a “KNOWHOW” Conference.

Pugh added that the show draws about 600 unique retailers and about 3000 attendees annually throughout mainly Canada but some American retailers too.

KNOWSHOW runs two seasonally-focused events each year with a winter show in January and a summer show in July.

“We’ve got retailers from across the spectrum from lifestyle fashion boutiques, action sports, winter sports and outdoor retailers and now we’re adding heavily into the gifting, accessory, jewelry market as well,” said Pugh.

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This year marks the first year that KNOWSHOW has included a conference component, called KNOWHOW - which is described as a tactically focused learning event for brands and retailers aimed at developing essential marketing. The goal of the conference is to provide actionable strategies to help organizations find, engage, convert, and build solid relationships with key customers.

“KNOWHOW Conference was born out of a need that we’ve seen in the market . . . giving these self-starting entrepreneurs an opportunity to keep their skills up in a changing world,” said Pugh, adding that so much has changed over the years in how retailers connect with customers.

He said KNOWHOW is a way for those retailers to stay abreast of the best skills, trends and ways to make sure they stay relevant and stay connected to the market.

Also new at KNOWSHOW is a TableTop Market with a curated selection of local and international accessory brands. Organizers say the Market aims to create a more functional sales space for accessory and gift brands that want to reach Canada’s hippest Lifestyle-Fashion Retailers. Categories at the Market include: Jewelry; Fashion Accessories; Craft Pantry Items; Home Goods; Men's Grooming Products; and Bath and Body Products.

David Tyldesley, vice-president and co-founder of Cube Business Media which owns the show, commented on the tremendous changes that have taken place in the retail sector over recent years.

“Tremendous change has happened but KNOWSHOW has managed to stay relevant to the core target of independent retailers, in particular in Western Canada,” he said. “We’re bringing some new concepts to the show and for the first time ever we’re planning to open up KNOWSHOW a little bit more so it’s not just a buying show. We’re doing some interesting things and we’re really excited about the innovations we’re bringing this year, and as-yet-unannounced new features for next year too.  You can expect KNOWSHOW to maintain and further expand its relevance in 2018 and 2019.” 

Learn more at knowshow.ca.

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Mario Toneguzzi

Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary has 37 years of experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, city and breaking news, and business. For 12 years as a business writer, his main beats were commercial and residential real estate, retail, small business and general economic news. He nows works on his own as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training. Email: mdtoneguzzi@gmail.com.