ProWine Asia celebrates rise in visitor and exhibitor numbers

Wine and spirit trade fair ProWine Asia returned to Hong Kong on 7 to 10 May, reporting rises in both the number of visitors and exhibitors attending the event.

After first debuting in Hong Kong in 2017, the show returned to the territory this year with a show it claims “reinforced its brand image as a trade-focus event for Asia Pacific region”.

This year’s show saw the event organisers increase the exhibition space by 20% compared to last year. A total of 340 exhibitors from 28 countries and regions attended ProWine Asia this year, compared to 310 when it was last held in the city in 2017.

Among those making their ProWine Asia debut were Gobierno de la Rioja and PRODECA (Region of Catalonia).

A total of 12,716 trade visitors attended this year, compared to 12,184 in 2017. These visitors hailed from 62 countries – in fact 36% of visitors came from outside of Hong Kong, mostly from southern China, Macau, Taiwan and Korea. This represents a 8.4% rise on the number from outside the region in 2017.

The four-day show also consisted of a programme of masterclasses held by the likes of Debra Meiburg MW, Sarah Heller MW, Jennifer Docherty MW, Darius Allyn MS and China’s first master of Sommelier Yang Lv.

Wine, spirits, whisky and saké masterclasses were also hosted by the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), while specialised regional masterclasses were also given by Business France, the California Wine Institute, the Hungary Tourism Agency and Deutschland Sommelier Association.

Commenting on this year’s show, Bastian Mingers, global head of wines and spirits and director of ProWein, said: “As one of the most open and economically vibrant regions, the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area is definitely the buzzword in 2019, Hong Kong plays an important role in this initiative.

“Four days of business opportunities and rewarding interactions between producers, importers, distributors, key buyers and industry experts proved again that ProWine Asia 2019 in Hong Kong is well positioned as the strategic gateway to tap into the Asian wine boom.”

ProWine Asia was held in conjunction with HOFEX 2019, a leading food and hospitality trade show in Asia. It was jointly organised by Messe Düsseldorf China and UBM Asia, which is responsible for HOFEX.

Paul March, managing director of UBM ISO added: “In 2017, ProWine Asia switched to an annual cycle alternating between Singapore and Hong Kong. We are glad to see this year’s exhibition area has increased 20%. This reflects the strength and development of wine and spirits market in Asia. ProWine Asia (Hong Kong) is entering a new dynamic phase as it becomes more integrated and interactive with trade operators. Many participants are reporting strong orders and deals during the show.”

Commenting on this year’s fair and the experience of the California Wine Institute, Christopher Beros, asia director of the trade body said: “The fair has been great. This is the first time we are doing ProWine Asia, and I must say it has been terrific. We have been seeing good traffic and meeting with many prospective Asian customers. In terms of engagement, in terms of having our presence known, and in terms of letting people in the trade here know that Californian wines is committed to the Asian market, I am pleased to share that the trade fair has fulfilled our participation and business objectives on those levels.”

ProWein’s upcoming shows include: ProWine China taking place on 12-14 November 2019 in Shanghai; ProWein in Düsseldorf on 15-17 March 2020, ProWine Asia in Singapore on 31 March to 3 April 2020 and Prowein Asia (Hong Kong) from 18-21 May 2021.

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