Tokyo Big Site
The International Stationery and Office Products Fair Tokyo (ISOT), which
will be held this year from July 7-9 (Thurs-Sat) at Tokyo Big Sight in Japan
stands to attract even more major Japanese and international exhibitors, and two
more trade fairs, Tokyo International Book Fair (TIBF) and the newly launched
Scrapbooking Fair, will be held concurrently. These developments have resulted
in the most enthusiastic response on record from the industry, with 750
exhibitors from over 20 countries and a projected 45,000 buyers poised to take
advantage of ISOT 2005.
For 16 consecutive years ISOT has maintained its position as Asia’s largest
stationery fair, bolstered in recent years by the concurrently held
International Office Machines & Equipment Expo Tokyo (OFMEX), which made its
inaugural appearance in 2003. The cause and effect of the fair’s staying power
is that it has become an essential venue for any company looking to make bulk
purchases of stationary and related products from Japanese, Asian, and other
countries. Total on-site orders based on reports from exhibitors and visitors
alike increase in parallel with the show’s size and many report that ISOT is a
vital part of their yearly business plan.
Active on-site business is the major reason for the show’s continued growth
and expansion. The number of exhibitors has shot up nearly 20% in the space of
one year, with 750 in 2005 to 2004’s 639. The projected visitor count has also
increased by 15%, up to 45,000 from 39,083 last year. Expansion is not only
reflected in sheer numbers, as many exhibitors from 2004 have opted to expand
their booth space in order to display more product, enhance their offering and
accommodate more buyer meetings.
Every year ISOT brings Japan’s best brands out for display under one roof.
Visiting buyers are able to peruse the newest collections of such top Japanese
makers as Pentel, Tombow, Zebra, Lihit Lab, PLUS, King Jim, and many more. The
range of countries exhibiting also contributes to the diverse atmosphere of the
show. Not only Japanese exhibitors, but also those from Asian countries such as
Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and China, as well as the USA, UK, France, Germany and
Italy travel the distance to build their business in the Asian market.
The incredible range of products on display at ISOT is also cited as another
reason for the show’s heavy attendance. In addition to a variety of new and
innovative core products such as writing instruments, paper products, and
greeting cards, the show boasts a range of niche products. Such hard-to-find
goods as Braille signs, business card cases, balloons, easels, recycled goods,
mousepads are arrayed alongside industry mainstays like frames, wrapping
materials, and software.
At ISOT 2005, the inaugural Scrapbooking Fair will debut to strengthen the
already booming performance of ISOT. Scrapbooking is growing rapidly as a hobby
and industry in Japan and Asia, with significant growth anticipated in the next
few years. One sign of scrapbooking’s ascendance in Japan is that many stores,
including Itoya, Japan’s leading stationary store, have devoted entire floors to
scrapbooking. Already a number of exhibitors from Japan, Asia, and other
overseas countries have committed to participate in this inaugural edition,
which will be the first of its kind in Japan.
Exhibitors will display scrapbooking tools and materials such as cutters and
scissors, paper punches, paper edgers, seals and stickers, albums and frames,
adhesives, paper products, pens and writing materials, photo-related goods, and
other accessories. Expected visitors include wholesalers and
importers/exporters, retailers such as stationery shops, department stores, home
centres, convenience stores, hobby and handicraft shops, book stores, and gift
shops, and buyers from mail order companies, hotels, wedding companies, schools,